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Reading for Ukulele - The Next Steps

Take your reading to a pro level.

Reading can be thought of on many different levels. 1) the ability to slowly and painfully work out the written music. 2) the ability to hear the music by looking at the notation. 3) the ability to notate< your ideas in standard music notation. 4) the ability to read music as you read a book or an article. 5) the ability to communicate with other musicians in the written language of music. 6) the ability to learn songs that you have never heard.

This series of lessons picks up after right after the Reading Music on Ukulele - Primer which focused on reading in the open position. This series is a Pro level series of lessons to get you really reading.

PUBLISHED: Jan 1, 2003 UPDATED: Jan 1, 2003 • VIEWS: 27 • SERIES CODE: UKEREAD1S

9 Lessons in the “Reading for Ukulele - The Next Steps” Series

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson One, Introduction • Updated: Feb 17, 2014

This is a series of lessons for reading music for ukulele at a pro level.

Reading can be thought of on many different levels. 1) the ability to slowly and painfully “work out” the written music. 2) the ability to “hear” the music by looking at the notation. 3) the ability to “notate” your ideas in standard music notation. 4) the ability to “read” music as you read a book or an article. 5) the ability to communicate with other musicians in the written language of music. 6) the ability to learn songs that you’ve never heard.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Two, Note Recognition • Updated: Feb 18, 2014

Once you understand the basic concept of reading, it’s time to get down to the development of the skills. We know our goal is to read music as well as we read words. Now, how do we get there?

Note Recognition

If you can’t recognize the notes on the staff, you certainly can’t read them. For anyone who is past this step, great! But in many cases, the recognition of notes on the staff is not as good as it should be. If you can’t read music, this skill doesn’t exist at all.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Three, Open Position • Updated: Feb 18, 2014

Now that you can recognize the notes on the staff in the Treble clef, it’s time to start connecting that knowledge to the ukulele.

One of the most significant problems in reading for the ukulele, is that many of the same notes can be found in multiple locations on the neck. For example, the same A note is an open string one, string two - fret (5) and string three, fret (9) and if using a high G tuning - string four fret (2). The only way to cut down this complexity is to organize the ukulele into positions where this duplication is either eliminated or at least, minimized.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Four, Key Signatures, Sharps • Updated: Feb 18, 2014

This lessons covers the natural symbol and the sharp key signatures keys.

In musical notation, a key signature is a collection of sharp or flat symbols placed together on the staff. Key signatures are generally written immediately after the clef at the beginning of a line of musical notation, although they can appear in other parts of a score, notably after a double barline. A key signature is use to indicate the “auto sharping or flatting of specified notes. Key signatures are also used to identify the key of a composition.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lessons Five, Key Signatures, Flats • Updated: Feb 18, 2014

This lessons covers the natural symbol and the flat key signatures keys.

In musical notation, a key signature is a collection of sharp or flat symbols placed together on the staff. Key signatures are generally written immediately after the clef at the beginning of a line of musical notation, although they can appear in other parts of a score, notably after a double barline. A key signature is use to indicate the “auto sharping or flatting of specified notes. Key signatures are also used to identify the key of a composition.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Six, Ties • Updated: Feb 18, 2014

This lessons's work will advance rhythm by introducing Ties. Many ukulele players can find the notes on their instrument but can't read rhythm with enough accuracy and speed to be considered "sight readers". Remember that sight reading is just a level of reading. It's not some special and mysterious skill. When you read a book or magazine, you don't have to "work out" the words before you "read" them. You just read them.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Seven, Rests & Position II • Updated: Feb 19, 2014

Lesson seven covers reading in position II.

After spending time on open and first position, we’re ready to move into the second position. The second position is defined as the notes on frets 2, 3, 4 and 56 on all four strings. The first finger will play notes in fret 2. The second finger will play notes in fret 3. The third finger will play notes in fret 4 and the fourth finger will play notes in fret 5.

The second position is a natural position for the key of C major and G major as well as their two relative minor keys, A minor and E minor.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Eight, Position III • Updated: Feb 23, 2014

After spending time on open, first and second position, we’re ready to move into the third position. The third position is defined as the notes on frets 3, 4, 5 and 6 on all four strings. The first finger will play notes in fret 3. The second finger will play notes in fret 4. The third finger will play notes in fret 5 and the fourth finger will play notes in fret 6.

The third position is a natural position for the key of Db major and Ab major as well as their two relative minor keys, Bb minor and F minor.

This lesson also cover level III rhtyhm.

Reading for `Ukulele - Lesson Nine, Position IV • Updated: Feb 19, 2014

Lesson nine covers reading in position IV.

The fourth position is defined as the notes on frets 4, 5, 6 and 7 on all four strings. The first finger will play notes in fret 4. The second finger will play notes in fret 5. The third finger will play notes in fret 6 and the fourth finger will play notes in fret 7.

The fourth position is a natural position for the key of D major and A major as well as their two relative minor keys, B minor and F# minor.

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