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Old 01-14-2021, 08:53 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: wyoming
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Originally Posted by Fatfinger McGee View Post
Is there a way to learn guitar that's more like learning to speak, and less like learning to read? I have been watching my children learn to read, and contrasting it with how they learned to speak, and I can't help but wonder if there's a different way.
Hi FfMcGee
I think most musicians (including most very capable and serious professional musicians) are more like children to learn language by listening and speaking without learning to read.

And I certainly would never call someone like Phil Keaggy who reads no music musically-illiterate because he doesn't read notation.

The exception would be the classical community, who I'm not convinced are better musicians because they read.

As one who reads scores, and has a music degree (with focus on theory), I can read notation (and transcribe by listening), TAB, Figured Bass, Nashville Numbering, Jazz chord charting, both Roman Numeral & Arabic numeral charting of chords, and Solfege (both fixed and sliding Do).

I taught intermediate and advanced fingestyle for 40 years (for $$$) without teaching notation, or TAB.

I never mention my capabilities to any group I'm playing with. If the sax/clarinet/flute/keyboardist player needs something notated, I will grab a sheet of paper and quick draw a staff and notate it.

If the group speaks in chord names, or Jazz Chart, I can speak that too. I just want to figure out what language they speak so we are up and running quickly and making music.

I don't think everybody needs to read notation, or Solfege, or much of anything more than basic chord sheets (outside the classical community, or hired-gun studio musicians).

And I think you can converse-musically very well without being at the aforementioned professional writer level.


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