This might sound a bit daft but when you see the chord at the top and the tab numbers at the bottom what do you play? The chord or the tabs?? Or am i missing something?

Ta much
play the tab and youre playing the chord. sweet
dont take any guff from these bastards man

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play the tab and youre playing the chord. sweet

not usually.

If they have chord names along the top of the tab that's just to indicate the underlying chord tonality. If you want to sound the same play the tab, if you want to simplify the song down use the chords. Also, knowing the chords will usually help you figure out your fingering and hand position.
Actually called Mark!

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That isn't really reading music IMO, its just reading guitar tablature which is balls easy, the chords are usually just the simplified version of the tab, without the hammerons and pulloffs and any added variations.

EDIT : Seagull steve strikes again
Well, sometimes there's a rhythm section along with a lead. Rhythm usually being chords is what your rhythm guitarist or maybe you will be playing, while your lead plays the tab.
I thought the tab numbers were for playing riffs, i.e. individual notes instead of chords?? I might be a mile off as i don't really know what i'm talkin about :-)