To Read Or Not To Read


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"Do I need to know how to read music?"

A very valid question.

I'm sure many of us, when they first started playing, worked out of one of the old Mel Bay books that had shown standard notation while learning a song. Got pretty boring didn't it?

Personally, I just wanted to ROCK! Forget all of the theory and reading music crap. Show me songs so I can play with others!!

To many, a piece of sheet music in standard notation looks like nothing more than a page full of black ink spots thrown across a bunch of lines. Very intimidating.

The answer really lies in this question:

"Exactly what is your goal for your playing?"

Do you wish to start a band? Just entertain yourself? Become a studio musician? Work for hire? Write your own music? Sit by the campfile and try to impress the ladies (or men)?

More often than not, if you are learning to play just for your own entertainment there may not be that much call in learning to read standard notation.

However, with being a studio musician it is almost a requirement. I'm quite sure you wouldn't get all that many calls if you couldn't read.

If you wish to write your own songs, it could be a great benefit to have the skills necessary to notate so others that can read could play along.

Guitar tablature is great, but it DOES have it's limitations.

Bottom line, it all depends on YOU.

"Exactly what is your goal for your playing?"

Jerry Mathis has 25 years of guitar experience - playing, teaching, recording and performing live. Visit his website to get all of your guitar tablatures, articles, reviews, accessories and more all in one place!


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