Easiest Way to Learn the Note Names on the Fretboard

Learning notes on the fretboard always seemed impossible to me, until I tried this way.

Ultimate Guitar
Learning notes on the fretboard always seemed impossible to me, until I tried this way. We would start by learning all 7 natural notes. (Notes without #'s or b's) We won't use any open strings, and will learn notes up to the 12th fret. Everything after the 12th fret is just a repeat. The video below explains how to write down the locations on fret and string, and go from there. Once you have completed the first note (E), I would learn the rest in this order: G - B - F - D - A - C Just to space things in a way so that you don't confuse them. Pretty easy once you get started. Use as a 1 or 2 minute warm up everyday, longest it should take you is 1 week per note. End of 7 weeks, Presto! You know the names, which is important. I tell my students, when a painter paints, he knows what the colors are he uses and it is just as important for us to know our note names :)
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Hope this helps! Quintin Louw

26 comments sorted by best / new / date

    This is a great lesson. I've been struggling with this. I will incorporate this into my practice.
    In standard tuning, this puts all the notes five spaces from each other. Starting at the low E: 12-5=7, 7-5=2, 2-5=9 (remember it's 1 through 12), 9-4(B string relation)=5, and finally 5-5 brings us back to 12 on the high e.
    Thank you for posting this, I've started trying to learn the names of notes about a week ago, this will really help a lot.
    Great lesson, I will be using this everyday for warm ups. I've actually been trying to find an effective way of memorizing all of the notes!
    www.fretboardwarrior.com is the best way i found and its free... it also help your hearing as you hear the notes played out, great tool.
    this is great! what about the other notes? where do i find the locations of them?
    You just sharpen or flatten the notes you already learned. If you have already learned the seven notes, all there's left is sharps/flats. You know where D is. D sharp is one fret above D. Same with all sharps - they are always one fret above the natural note. And D flat is one fret below D - again all flats are one fret below the natural note.
    Thanks Quintin, a five minute lesson has simplified what I have been struggling to understand for a long time..cheers!
    Decode Music
    Interesting approach Quintin. Have you have found the success of this with your students?
    ken styles
    This is a horrible way to learn the locations of notes on the neck. There is a much easier way.
    i usually associate notes with feelings or songs in which i've heard them used primarily C is the doom tone C# is the dead tone D is the heavy tone Eb is the 80s metal/90s Metallica tone E is the standard tone F is the satan tone F# is the dead tone Led Zeppelin used in "immigrant song" G is "The Mob Rules" tone G# is the "Invisible Kid" tone A is the "Breaking the Law" tone Bb is the Sound of Music tone B is the Tyr tone