Music Theory

Here is a preview of some of the lessons included in Musicopoulos

Sight Reading

Learning to Sight Read Music

In this series of lessons, we will discover the building blocks used in music notation. Like all things new, this may appear difficult at first but before you know it you will have all the knowledge you need to pick up a piece of music and play it.

Clefs

Like writing on a page, music is written on clefs. Music is represented on 4 different clefs. The type of clef used depends on the type of instrument the music is written for.

The Treble Clef

Treble Clef Image

The Bass Clef

Bass Clef Image

The Alto Clef

Alto Clef Image

The Tenor Clef

Tenor Clef Image

The most frequently used clefs are the treble clef, which is used to represent music written for instruments with a higher pitch, and the bass clef, which is used to represents music written for instruments with a lower pitch. There are some instruments with a range around middle C, which fit between the bass and treble clefs. In order to avoid using ledger lines, the alto and tenor clefs, also known as the C clefs, are arranged to suit the range of such instruments.

Lets look at the Treble Clef first. The lines represent the following notes

Treble Clef Line Notes

The spaces represent the following notes

Treble Clef Spaces Notes

When beginning to memorize these notes it is helpful to use acronyms that help you quickly identify the note represented for any line or space on the staff.

For the treble clef, the lines represent the notes E-G-B-D-F

The acronym Every Good Boy Does Fine is helpful in memorizing this sequence.

The spaces on the treble clef represent the notes F-A-C-E

There is no need for an acronym here as the notes spell the word FACE

Now lets look at the Bass Clef. The lines represent the following notes

Bass Clef Line Notes

The spaces represent the following notes

Bass Clef Space Notes

For the bass clef, the lines represent the notes G-B-D-F-A

The acronym Great Big Dogs Fight Animals is helpful in memorizing this sequence.

The spaces on the Bass Clef represent the notes A-C-E-G

The acronym All Cows Eat Grass is helpful in memorizing this sequence.

If you have trouble memorizing these acronyms you can create your own. The acronym is only a tool we use to help learn the notes on the clef. As you practice you will find that you will be able to read music without having to refer to these acronyms.

Now lets look at the alto clef. The lines represent the following notes

Alto Clef Line Notes

The spaces represent the following notes

Alto Clef Space Notes

Now lets look at the tenor clef. The lines represent the following notes

Tenor Clef Line Notes

The spaces represent the following notes

Tenor Clef Space Notes