New fretboard markings idea

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by The Captain, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    Prompted by JonR's question in another thread. He asked "if all the piano keys were white, how would a piano player find their way aound" ?

    My response.......

    So, why aren't the accidentals flagged on a guitar fretboard with a groovy marker of some kind ?? Now that would be a very useful thing to do with inlays, I'm thinking.
    Piano players have it easy with the black keys not only marking the sharps but also placing the b/c and e/f combinations etc.
    If a fretboard was marked similarly, we would all be able to effortlessly find the C scale and identify all our other noes using the sharps clusters etc.
    What a great teaching tool that would be.

    Really, we struggle uphill a bit trying to learn all the note placements with nothing to guide us. So, I know that violin is probably harder, but that has been proven in song to have a certain natural owner, so it does not count.
    It will make my life a lot easier learning the fretboard when I modify one of my guitars now I've had the brainwave.
     
  2. bubbafat

    bubbafat Member

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    Very few people would intentionally play a piano in an alternate tuning.

    Just use stickers.
     
  3. Austinrocks

    Austinrocks Member

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    I think it really comes down to not needing to know the notes, I played piano before guitar, self taught but I read music, and when I started playing guitar, there were no tabs, had to work it out of the music, most guitar players can not do that and don't need to since the tabs are available and describe bends and vibrato the way music can not.

    For me I play key based and know the notes on the guitar, its how I started playing from the music, the notes took me a couple minutes to figure out after I knew how a guitar is tuned, a couple of minutes. I think it really comes down to not needing to know this stuff to play guitar, the tabs make it so easy.

    also before we had tuners, relative tuning was used, so you had to know that the 5th fret was the same as the string below, don't even need that any more.
     
  4. clothwiring

    clothwiring Member

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    They do make those lighted fretboard guitars. Why not get one of those.

    On a side note, the way I really learned was spending some time each day throwing a finger down at random and then calling out the note. Just do it for 5 minutes a day. Also associate that note with a few scales you might be working on that would go with a song you're currently learning. Also jamming with a friend can help you a lot.
     
  5. Luke

    Luke Senior Member

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  6. Gigbag

    Gigbag Member

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    Just learn the natural notes A-B-C-D-E-F-G (the white keys). The rest are the black keys. Nothing between B-C and E-F.

    I have seen pictures of someone's custom guitar that had the fretboard marked with black and white like a piano. It looked pretty cluttered. If that's what you want, why not (at least for students) just put the letters A through G on the fretboard.
     
  7. GovernorSilver

    GovernorSilver Member

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    ???

    I play viola and cello. Just takes ears and a lot of patience.
     
  8. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    Guys, ya do know I was being a bit facetious.
    I might throw down a few markers though.
    I pretty much have the fretboard mapped now, though I don't really use that a whole lot.
    Like most people, I play from memory and patterns, use tab a lot, work some stuff out etc, the usual mix.
    I was thinking more of just marking the sharps. I have an older guitar that is a slight beater, so I'll try some stickers and report back.
     
  9. Austinrocks

    Austinrocks Member

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    write the notes out on a piece of paper a few times, my teacher had me do that, however since I already knew the notes it took me a minute to do it, it has to be in your head, and only does you any good if you understand keys, and chord construction. marking a fretboard does not work you can not see the fretboard when you play.
     
  10. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    Yeah, been there, done that, but there is so much information competing for attention in my head that it doesn't stick.
    It's really not that big a deal. I was mostly just being silly about piano players needing black keys to find their way around.
    I do understand keys and chord construction.
    You know, the most frustrating thing for me, is that the best way to learn is to teach. So, I've taught a few people, deliberatly with the intent of improving my own knowledge and familiarity level, but none of the buggers have been the slightest bit interested in learning ANY theory, so I haven't been able to access the results I wanted.
    Just recently one friend has finally realised that he has to learn some note names at some stage, so there is hope in sight.
     
  11. sausagefingers

    sausagefingers Supporting Member

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    A tangent: I like that all of the half steps on a guitar look equivalent. It makes playing in different keys easy: the interval relationships (ie finger/fret patterns) are the same no matter if you play a 3rd at the nut or above the 12th fret, or anywhere else.

    I always thought that is one thing that makes learning theory on the guitar easier than it might be on an intrument where the note relationships are not so visual. Piano is probably a close second, even with those pesky black keys! Must be a left-brain thing for me.
     
  12. Clifford-D

    Clifford-D Member

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    Another tangent,

    Speaking of fret markers, guitar dots are at 3, 5, 7, 9

    but banjo markers are at 3, 5, 7, 10

    why???
     
  13. The Captain

    The Captain Member

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    I'm going to dare a guess and suggest it has to do with the common intervals used in open slide. The usual progression is 2,3,5,7,10,12. I'm thinking banjo and open tuned slide went together a lot in the formative days of American guitar culture in the Ozarks etc, so maybe that was an influence.
    Have the fret markers always been in the current conventional (actually, just using this word kinda answers the question; it's a "convention")positions, or has that drifted around a bit ??
     
  14. Bryan T

    Bryan T guitar owner Silver Supporting Member

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    I had a Dell Arte "manouche" guitar that had a dot at the 10th fret. Drove me nuts! My mandolin has a dot at the 10th fret and I like it, but it makes a lot of sense with the tuning of the mandolin.

    The fretboard markings idea doesn't seem that useful to me. If you are watching your fingers that much, then you need to work on that.

    Bryan
     

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