Reading Music Lesson #7: Clef Signs

reading music lesson 7Clef signs are the symbols that you see at the very beginning of a music staff.

They help us organize the staff so that music notes can be read with ease.

The purpose is to tell the reader where each note (and letter name) will go.

In other words, a clef sign tells us what lines and spaces of the staff will represent each note.

There are 3 common clef signs:

  1. Treble Clef
  2. Bass Clef
  3. C Clefs

Within the C Clefs, there are 3 different types:

  1. Soprano Clef
  2. Tenor Clef
  3. Alto Clef [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #6: The Music Alphabet

reading music lesson 6The music alphabet is not too different from the American English alphabet.

The best part is that it only uses the first 7 letters.

music alphabetWhen those seven letters are done, it restarts all over again.

We begin with “A” and move in order of the alphabet and stop at “G”.  That’s it!

That’s all of the letters we use to name notes.

Once you hit G, you restart back over with “A”.

music alphabet lettersAround and around we go cycling through the alphabet over and over again. [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #5: Space Notes

reading music lesson 5As you’ve probably already guessed, space notes are any type of music note without a line running through it.

They fit in between two lines of the music staff.

Can you see how these notes do not cross over a line?

space notes

Space notes fit within the spaces of a staff.

They are just nestled in there all warm and cozy…

The next thing we’re going to do is learn what the names of these notes are.

Before we do that, we need to have a lesson on the music alphabet.

Reading Music Lesson #4: Line Notes

reading music lesson 4Do you remember those music notes that are placed on lines?

They are called line notes.

You can see how a line of the music staff runs right through the middle of the note.

line notes

It’s almost as though the line is splitting the note in half.

Line notes are basically any type of music note with a line running through it.

Every single line of the staff can hold a note.

Now that you know we call these line notes, it’s time to talk about space notes next.

Reading Music Lesson #3: Pitch

reading music lesson 3The musical sounds that you hear when a music note is played is called pitch.

Pitch is relative.  When we compare the pitch of one note to another note, we can hear if it is higher or lower in sound.

The location of the note on the staff determines how high or low it will be in pitch when you read it.

The higher the note is written on the music staff, the higher the pitch will sound.

higher pitch [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #2: Music Notes

reading music lesson 2Music notes are the round or oval-shaped symbols that you find on the music staff.

They are placed on the lines or in the spaces.

music notes

You will notice that notes can move any direction on the staff.

music notes

They can move up, down, or appear again in the same space or line.

music notes [Read more...]

Reading Music Lesson #1: The Music Staff

Reading Music Lesson 1The music staff is nothing but horizontal lines that run parallel to each other.

music staff

There are total of 5 lines with 4 spaces in between.

music staff lines

We number the lines and spaces starting at the bottom moving up towards the top.

music staff spaces [Read more...]

Reading Music Series

reading music seriesI hear regularly that many people are trying to learn music theory on their own in an effort to learn how to improve their music reading skills.

They search the internet, buy lots of books, and ask different teachers.

Does this sound familiar?

Everything is going okay for awhile until they run into a wall.

The wall of deep frustration.

Of course, much of the information that is being absorbed makes sense at first.  The problem is when you keep adding to that knowledge base, but not sequentially.

Everything gets jumbled up together and your left in a state of confusion.

I call this Swiss cheese syndrome… [Read more...]

Time Signature Chart (Printable)

time signature chartThis simple little time signature chart was designed to help you remember what the top and bottom numbers mean.

It’s always easy to remember the top number, but the bottom number can be a little bit tricky.

Let’s review…

The Top Number

This number just tells us how many beats are in each measure.

The Bottom Number

Whatever number appears on the bottom indicates the type of note that will receive 1 beat.

So, when you see the number “4″, it means the quarter note will receive 1 beat. [Read more...]

How To Build A Chord Or Triad

build a chordWhat is the difference between a chord and a triad?

Is there a difference?

A chord is when 3 or more notes sound together.

A triad is when a 3-note chord uses the root (1st note), 3rd, and 5th note of the scale.

All 3 notes sound simultaneously just like a chord.

A chord is used more as a general term while a triad tells us more specifics about that chord.


The name “triad” was given to this type of chord because it is built in the closest position possible using only 3rd intervals. [Read more...]

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