Learning `Ukulele with Curt

The home for Learning Ukulele and All Things Ukulele with Curt Sheller
Ukulele Player, Musicians, Author, Publisher, Educator, Graphic Artist,...

Reading TAB

Tablature ( or tabulature, or tab for short ) is a form of musical notation indicating instrument fingering rather than musical pitches.

BernsteinP“I think anything that separates guitar players from the rest of the music world is bad. Tablature is a certain secret code only for a guitar player. So you have guitar players who can read tablature and not music.”

Peter Bernstein

( Curt. This applies equally to ukulele players. )

However, You Still Need to Understand TAB

Here are a few of my lessons on TAB.


Reading Ukulele TAB - Alternate Notation

TAB or Tablature Tablature is an alternate form of musical notation, which tells players where to place their fingers on a particular instrument rather than which pitches to play.

TAB is sort of a secret language between guitar players and ukulele players. Although a shortcut to getting started it actually serves to alienate one from the rest of the music world.

With fewer alternate note locations than the guitar, reading music on ukulele is a lot easier than you might believe.


The Trouble with TAB

TAB, short for tablature is a form of musical notation using numbers and letters on a staff that that corresponds to the number of strings of fretted string instrument. Theses number tell a player which fret to place their fingers on the fingerboard.

TAB has a history with lute music from centuries ago and has found wide use in the music publishing industry catering to the guitarist who can?t or doesn?t want to learn to read. TAB doesn?t exist in mainstream music, primarily by some music magazines and on the internet.

Learning to read TAB can be accomplished in minutes. Learning to read standard music notation takes a little longer.

“Example of numeric vihuela tablature from the book Orphenica Lyra by Miguel de Fuenllana (1554)”


FIngerpicking on Ukulele, Lesson Fourteen - How to Read TAB

Tablature (or TAB for short) is a musical notation system for indicating instrument fingering rather than musical pitches in the standard music tradition.

Tablature is common for fretted stringed instruments such as the lute, vihuela, or guitar. Tablature has been around for centuries and was common during the Renaissance and Baroque eras.

Just browsing over both books, they look fantastic! I'm a guitarist and uke player for over 25 years and was thinking about writing a ukulele book but you've already written what I think are the best, most comprehensive and thorough books I've ever seen for the instrument. I just might end up buying every book you've written and I'll be giving my highest recommendation for your books to my friends and students. Thank you so much for taking the time to write such great books! — Peter Rhee

Aloha, Curt, All I can say is WOW! What you have accomplished is simply incredible! All the best — Glen Hirabayashi, The Aloha Boys

Folks, if you haven't stopped by Curt's site, do so right now! ..And get his books, they are fantastic. This guy knows his stuff and is able to pass it along too. — Alan Johnson Proprietor, The 4th Peg

I can highly recommend Curt's Uke books — I have four of them and they are excellent. — fatveg — Portland

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