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Learn to play the guitar, fingering

To learn to play the guitar it is very important to know notions of fingering and some guitar terms

A guitarist has to know the signs or terms of his instrument to be able to read the scores correctly, it is what we call the guitar language.

In this language, fingering, that is, the way to indicate strings, fingers and other signs that tell us how and where to play the strings, is essential to learn to play the guitar.

The right hand

The fingers of the right hand are named with the initial letter of their own name: Thumb (p), Index (i), Medium (m) and Cancel (a). The Pinkie, as it is not usually used, is not indicated. If indicated, it would be done with the letter ñ.

The left hand

The fingers of the left hand are named with numbers: 1 for the Index, 2 for the Middle, 3 for the Ring and 4 for the Pinky. The Thumb, as it stands behind the handle, is not named.

When a string is touched and is not stepped on with any finger of the left hand, it is said that the string is touched in the air and indicated by the number 0.

The strings and the frets

In guitar learning, the nomenclature helps to read the scores. The strings are indicated in the fingering with the number that corresponds to them, within a circle and according to their order. The first being the E of the trebles and the sixth, the E of the basses.

The frets are indicated with Roman numerals: I, II, III, IV, until the last fret of the guitar.

In short, a digitized score makes reading much easier since it indicates the “path” that our fingers must follow to play it correctly.

On the way to learn to play the guitar, fingering is a very important part.

Musical writing systems: pentagram and figure or tablature

There are two systems for writing music for guitar, writing on staves and writing by number or tablature. The latter is a form of writing only for string instruments.

Knowing the musical language is hard and it takes a long time to completely master it. However, some basic notions will help us understand what is "hidden" inside the staves and be able to play any guitar music by reading a score.

Music is the art of combining sounds over time. This simple definition reveals two of the basic pillars of music: sound and rhythm. The staff is the "graphic" in which the sounds are placed to indicate their height or tessitura. It is formed by five lines that in turn contain four spaces. The higher a sound is on the staff, the louder it will be and vice versa. If the height of the sounds does not fit in the staff, the so-called additional lines are used to continue maintaining the indication of the height of the sound.

The tablature is easier to interpret. It indicates the string and the fret where the note to play is located.

In future posts we will continue with more indications to learn how to play the guitar.

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