Learn Guitar Tablature

It took me over a year to finally learn how to read guitar tab so I hope I can help you learn it quicker than I did.

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It took me over a year to finally learn how to read guitar tab so I hope I can help you learn it quicker than I did. Guitar tablature, tab for short, can be your best friend. It's really easy to learn if you practice. The six lines represent the strings:
e----------   THINEST   1 string
B----------                     
G----------                     
D----------                     
A----------                     
E----------   THICKEST  6 string
The numbers are the frets you would press on.
e--1-2-3-4---------------------                 
B----------1-2-3-4-------------                 
G------------------1-2-3-4-----                 
D--------------------------1-2-3-4              
A---------------------------------1-2-3-4       
E----------------------------------------1-2-3-4
Read this left to right. This is a simple exercise my dad taught me. Start by putting your first finger on the first fret of the first string. Next, put your middle finger on the second fret of first string. Third finger goes on the third fret of the first string. Lastly your pinky finger goes on the forth fret of the first string. Okay, to review:
  • Lines equal string.
  • Numbers equal the frets you press on. NOT the fingers you use.
  • Read the numbers that are farthest left and work toward the right.
  • If you ever see the number zero on a string that means you would play that string open.
  • An X means you would mute the string.
  • Numbers that are stacked over each other equals a chord.
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    6 comments sorted by best / new / date

      daniel.kPL
      What about some rhythm reading on tab, and how to notate techniques like bending, legato, tapping and so forth? This lesson is good and informative, but... Way too short! Keep up the work and make the next one
      jbm351
      This is my first lesson and it is short but it is for beginners. I "might" do a more advanced lesson sometime later.
      tweakyburd
      I'm glad you fill that way I just picked up the guitar and just that little bit I'm still scratching my watch and winding my butt Is there a pre-beginners class?
      sweetestleaf
      What do you do when there is no space between numbers in tablature? So if it just had 235 on the same string with no space...
      robsaxe24
      I thought the dots represented the finger placement on the fret and number was which finger you used. Based on the tabs on "Evangelina" by Hoyt Axton this seems to be the case..