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Customer Review

16 of 26 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice Beginners book - so long as you want to read music., 17 Sept. 2009
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This review is from: Guitar Basics: (Book/ECD) (Faber Edition) (Paperback)
Why is there a whole load of music teachers out there, that just because they had to learn music (and so did I by the way) think everyone else has to do it as well. I can tell you for a fact that my 5 year old students don't want to learn music any more than they wanted to be able to read and write before they were going to be allowed to speak. This is a great book to start beginners on - buy why the all standard notation and hardly any TAB?

So if, like me, you want to use this book for youngsters between 5-10 years old, you're going to have to TAB most of it or inflict notation on them. Personally I want young people to play first (as they do if left to their own devices). When they are ready they can develop a hunger for reading music (or not). As the majority of jazz, blues, pop, metal, folk fingerstyle and bluegrass players often don't know standard notation- but still seem to make a living - it's questionable whether students in Primary school will see the need either. And yes I know that if you want to be a pro player it's wise to learn, and yes I know how to read myself - but the majority of players won't become pros.

So... I think the layout is very good and the progression from simple to harder is good and I'll be using it and TABing it myself. But I will also be using the Basic TAB Guitar Method books 1-4.Basix Tab Guitar Method, Bk 1: Book & Enhanced CD
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 2 Jul 2012 18:17:35 BDT
C Philpot says:
Nobody should have to "inflict" notation on a child - it should be fun to learn. I teach guitar, and I asked the same question - and the answer is - "why close that door to a student, when you could leave it open for the future?" It sounds like you had a bad experience with notation - doesn't mean your students have to though does it? Find ways to make recognising notes fun - rhymes - word association - it can be done.

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Jul 2012 07:51:04 BDT
Last edited by the author on 3 Jul 2012 08:41:00 BDT
The essence of what I am saying is this. If we told children that they had to learn to read and write at the same time as they started to speak - sometime around one to two years old - we think it a laughable proposition. Children lean to speak for year before they are encouraged to read and write. Children sing for years before they read and write. The idea that if you learn a foreign language, that you have to read and write it at the same time as you learn to speak it - and speaking is mostly what everyone want to do - is again just plain wrong. I'm not closing doors - I just don't see the justification to push students through it without a clear musical objective. Learning to read music isn't on the route to playing music. Its a tool not a blocking factor.

Books that teach notation to someone starting out playing a musical instrument are just perpetuating something I've noticed in the music teaching marketplace. (Coming from a business background before I started teaching full time for the last ten years, I have a different perspective to career music teachers.) Lots of teachers teach music because its something they know and they can charge students and parents for lessons in something they feel comfortable about. Its more about them making a living, than teaching what the student needs or wants. I've never had a student ask to learn music as a beginning strategy - but I have had parents ask. However, I've never had a student who didn't want to go on later to learn music reading when they realise its so useful. But none of them would want to use this sort of kiddies' book - try these..
Learning to Read Music: How to Make Sense of Those Mysterious Symbols and Bring Music Alive
Music Reading for Guitar: The Complete Method (Essential Concepts)
Reading Studies for Guitar (positions one through 7 and multi position studies in all keys).
I suppose in summary I'm saying, I don't know who this book is aimed at.

Posted on 19 Dec 2013 17:08:36 GMT
RogerF says:
I´m a musician / teacher and I mainly agree with what you´re saying here - music is a language - we learn to talk, then we learn to read & write, similalry we should learn to play, then learn to read & write afterwards (though this skill is not as essential in life as learning to read and write words). The problem is that some children come to learning / playing music too late and are already inhibited or shorn of the natural inclination to sing / play. - With these children it is difficult to get them to play music at all without the ´guide´ of the notation / tab. But once they have started playing something it becomes easier to introduce playing by ear and improvisation which I believe are essential parts of learning to play music for all music students, even thouse with an inclination more towards classical music.

In reply to an earlier post on 20 Dec 2013 09:06:12 GMT
Yep - agreed - whatever gets the job done. If a child needs music notation or TAB to get them started, go for it. Some children like learning by you showing them where the notes are, some like the simple TAB stuff (I useed to start them out on a single string with the fret numbers on sicky lables on the side ofbthe fretboard) and some like the dea of doing the "grown-up" thing, reading music. Sometimes its a good idea to get them working on music alongside fingering because it slows them down and the fingering issues alone don't seem to be so frustrating. It's the teacher being open to explore all the routes forward, in my opinion, that makes the learning experience exciting and effective for a student.

Posted on 12 Jun 2014 16:39:06 BDT
Last edited by the author on 12 Jun 2014 16:39:34 BDT
damien says:
Many guitarists hate notation.But Tab for kids can be just as confusing.(especially in open position.) Why do we read Tab upside down?Well it is how you hear it,not how it looks. just like on the dreaded standard stave.Rhythms look nicer on the standard clef.Dynamics can be easily applied.The only plus for tab is knowing which position to play in and for 5 or 6 string chords,but hey then we have rhythm slashes for that don't we?

Posted on 10 Oct 2014 13:35:08 BDT
Bequickx says:
Hi, I'm a teacher myself and If I am teaching young children (Such as 5-10 year old students) I find it a world easier to start to teach them reading music, as I can base other music games and activities around them. That's why this book is very good, yes It's "classical" based but the pieces are funny and they don't sound boring.

I've had students in the past (the young ones) who have began learning TAB and chords with previous teachers. They could barely play anything that sounded good! Let alone learn anything musical in the long run, wouldn't it be better if they could adapt their skills in reading to other instruments at a later date? Or, it would help them with counting rhythms and maths etc

If your tabbing this out your missing the point of the book. This book introduces TAB near the end anyway!

As for adults, I would most likely begin them with tab as they want to learn a specific song or they can't be arsed starting from scratch learning how to play simple sheet music.
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