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#1440182 - 05/20/10 09:36 AM Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff  
Joined: Jul 2005
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musdan Offline
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musdan  Offline
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I'v always had problems reading notes above and below the staff. Especially the ones with a few ledger lines.

It would help if I could find a "road map" - picture of all 88 keys with the notes and letter names - this would make it easier to learn.

Thanks for helping and fo being there. smile

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#1440195 - 05/20/10 09:57 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: musdan]  
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mom3gram Offline
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You can order a - hmmm.... not sure what they call it - note chart on heavy paper that you can put on your piano above the keys that has all 88 notes on them. I got it when I was trying to play David Nevue's "Solitude" which had a lot of notes above the staff. I got mine from Sheetmusicplus.com



mom3gram

ALFRED'S ADULT BOOK 1 GRADUATE
Faber Adult PA Bk. 1 Graduate
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#1440198 - 05/20/10 10:03 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: musdan]  
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DragonPianoPlayer Offline
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Hows this?

[Linked Image]

From Czerny's The Little Pianist Opus 823. It's not all 88, but it is probably close enough.

Rich


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#1440205 - 05/20/10 10:10 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: mom3gram]  
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Andy Platt Offline
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This might help too:

http://www.piano-lessons-info.com/piano-notes-above-below.html

For notes above or below those I hope the score would use octave markings like 8va, 15ma.



  • Debussy - Le Petit Nègre, L. 114
  • Haydn - Sonata in Gm, Hob. XVI/44

Kawai K3
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#1440237 - 05/20/10 11:04 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Andy Platt]  
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Morodiene Offline
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The best way to read notes above or below the staff is the same way you should be reading notes on the staff: by intervals. For example, let's say you have a note that is on the line above treble clef. You should know whatever note is on the top line (F), so then it's just a 3rd above that (line to the next line is a 3rd). Or if you have the space note above the first ledger line, then it's a 4th higher than F. If it's 2 ledger lines above, then its a 5th higher than F, and so on. If to read in reference to a note you do know, then it's not so hard.


private piano/voice teacher FT

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#1440270 - 05/20/10 11:45 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Morodiene]  
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Jeff Clef Offline
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Good ol' ledger lines--- we just have to memorize them. Can't be counting lines every time we want to strike a note.
[Linked Image]

The mnemonics can help: every good boy does fine always, face G.

Flash cards can help. You can make your own on 3x5 unlined index cards, or make your own chart on staff paper. It can help the memory to write things out in your own hand.

One should at least know the first two or three without having to count, or spell.


Clef

#1440332 - 05/20/10 01:45 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Jeff Clef]  
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Glen R. Offline
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I used to play tuba, and two ledger lines below the bass cleff is C. Turns out that 2 above the treble clef is also C. So now I have a reference point for ledger lines above the treble clef--I can use intervals from that C.
Of course if you weren't a tuba player who had "low C" burned into your visual processing, this won't help much smile


Be the person your dog thinks you are.
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#1440352 - 05/20/10 02:26 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Glen R.]  
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rocket88 Offline
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Originally Posted by Glen R.
I used to play tuba, and two ledger lines below the bass cleff is C. Turns out that 2 above the treble clef is also C. So now I have a reference point for ledger lines above the treble clef--I can use intervals from that C.
Of course if you weren't a tuba player who had "low C" burned into your visual processing, this won't help much smile


Good point. I'd like to add that the 2 ledger lines above the Treble clef is 2 C's above middle C.

And the 2 ledger lines below the bass clef is 2 C's below middle C.


Piano teacher and Blues and Boogie-Woogie pianist.
#1440353 - 05/20/10 02:27 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: rocket88]  
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Nikalette Offline
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It's a horrible process, but you just have to practice.

#1440359 - 05/20/10 02:34 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Nikalette]  
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Mark_C Offline
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Originally Posted by Nikalette
It's a horrible process, but you just have to practice.

That's right. It's a pain in the [whatever].

Even though I have about 200 years of experience with it smile I still have to COUNT those stupid lines and spaces if it's anything more than 2.

And I sometimes need to get out a magnifying glass. ha


"Everything I say is my opinion, including the facts." :-)
#1440369 - 05/20/10 03:01 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: musdan]  
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photowriters Offline
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Originally Posted by musdan
I'v always had problems reading notes above and below the staff. Especially the ones with a few ledger lines.

Well, here is an answer that you may hate, but it is based upon personal experience.

Before I took up the pyannie, I piddled with the guitar the result of which was sort of an education by osmosis. I learned which notes make up which chords, i.e., C-E-G = C Major, C-Eb-G = C minor, etc. Combined with a couple years of music theory, I began to see the staff, especially the notes on the ledger lines, as the notes of a chord. Ignoring any key signature or accidentals, A-C-E always makes some sort of A chord. Conveniently, the first three ledger lines above the treble staff and the first three lines below the bass staff are A-C-E.

If you know what makes which chord, it is a simple step from knowing that three ledger lines below the bass clef is an A so two leger lines below that must be a D because any flavor of D chord is D-F-A.

If you don't have a good mastery of which notes make which chords and vice versa, you can make up some 3x5 flash cards that you can carry with you and review when you are sitting waiting for something to happen.


Regards,

Bob
#1440394 - 05/20/10 03:59 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: photowriters]  
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Jeff Clef Offline
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ACEs, high and low--- that's easy to remember.

And the Joker is wild.


Clef

#1440449 - 05/20/10 05:55 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: photowriters]  
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Glen R. Offline
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Glen R.  Offline
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Originally Posted by photowriters

Conveniently, the first three ledger lines above the treble staff and the first three lines below the bass staff are A-C-E.

Hey, I like that!

Note identification isn't second-nature to me yet, but I have enough landmarks that I can play decently enough by reading intervals. In order to work on making all note recognition second-nature, I'll regularly play a piece slowly enough to name each note out loud. It seems to be working.

My 2 cents.


Be the person your dog thinks you are.
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#1440700 - 05/21/10 02:38 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Glen R.]  
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landorrano Offline
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Originally Posted by Glen R.
I'll regularly play a piece slowly enough to name each note out loud.


Good !

#1440762 - 05/21/10 06:34 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: landorrano]  
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joangolfing Offline
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Iowa
I have lots of trouble too with reading above and below the staff.

Jeff Clef--Your helpful diagram was the most useful thing I have seen in a long time. Wow! It is the only thing that might help me.
I'm copying it on my printer and will put it in my piano lesson notebook.

Thanks Jeff, keep coming with those creative ideas.

#1440871 - 05/21/10 10:18 AM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: joangolfing]  
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Music Major Offline
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Originally Posted by joangolfing

Jeff Clef--Your helpful diagram was the most useful thing I have seen in a long time. Wow!

+1


Kevin

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Yamaha S90 --------------- SS-69 Grand
The most important thing in music is what is not in the notes.
#1441078 - 05/21/10 04:34 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Music Major]  
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musdan Offline
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Thanks everyone - I call them the "dancing notes" - lot's of good information and it's back
to working out those pesky notes.

#1441087 - 05/21/10 04:53 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: landorrano]  
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Glen R. Offline
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Glen R.  Offline
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Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted by landorrano
Originally Posted by Glen R.
I'll regularly play a piece slowly enough to name each note out loud.


Good !

smile And it works!


Be the person your dog thinks you are.
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#1441330 - 05/21/10 11:34 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Mark_C]  
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Motorama Offline
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Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Nikalette
It's a horrible process, but you just have to practice.

That's right. It's a pain in the [whatever].

Even though I have about 200 years of experience with it smile I still have to COUNT those stupid lines and spaces if it's anything more than 2.


My advice is to practice memorizing those notes 5 minutes everyday (yeah, use a timer) for a week. Guaranteed you will know them.

Lately I'm embracing an anti-pracrastination philosophy smile
It all started when I had to admit to a friend that I didn't know the difference between plasma and LCD televisions. And yet I thought many times about the difference between them. So I realized I just had to check wikipedia once. So many times we say "I don't know that" or "I've always wondered that" while we could just learn it and once and for all.


#1441645 - 05/22/10 01:55 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: Motorama]  
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dannac Offline
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USA
These PDF's will print to 11" x 17" and 18" x 24" sheet.

http://www.olpssongs.com/PDF/piano1117.PDF

http://www.olpssongs.com/PDF/piano1824.PDF

Places like Office Depot, etc... can print directly from USB thumbdrive.

#1441801 - 05/22/10 07:04 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: dannac]  
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musdan Offline
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musdan  Offline
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Thanks dannac

#1441804 - 05/22/10 07:11 PM Re: Reading Notes Above and Below the Staff [Re: musdan]  
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Frozenicicles Offline
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Canada
I have a funny way of reading ledger lines - I've trained my eyes to be able to transpose things up or down an octave. It helps if you write the octave equivalent when going through something with a lot of ledger lines. You can hear it better in your head that way too. I actually prefer ledger lines to 8va signs. The weird jump that 8va signs create in the intervals always throws me off.


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