How To Read Piano Music
Music notation uses the following 7 letters of the alphabet.
The group of letters repeat up or down the keyboard.
From A to A is an octave.
An octave is 8 notes or A to A.
Then you can find
C to C
Middle C is right where it says it is in the middle of
THE GRAND STAFF
Music notes are written on what we call a GRAND STAFF.
A grand staff consists of 2 sets of 5 parallel horizontal
lines and spaces on which the notes are placed.
They are called the TREBLE CLEF and BASS CLEF.
A simple way to remember what notes are on each clef is
to follow this.
The TREBLE CLEF has the notes from Middle C and higher
or all the notes to the right of middle C.
The BASS CLEF has the notes from Middle C and lower
or all the notes to the left of middle C.
The G clef or treble clef is called that because the symbol
does like a G.
The F clef or bass clef symbol looks like an F.
Middle C itself is not noted on either staff and
sits on a ledger line between the two staffs.
The note on top of that ledger line or on the space above it is D.
The next note or E sits on the lowest or first line
of the treble clef.
The next note or F is on the space above the first line.
You can continue to go up the alphabet to find G, then A, and B
The note G is on the next line or second line.
The note A is on the space above G.
The note B is on the next line or third line.
The next note C is the higher C one octave up on the keyboard.
The note C is on the space above B.
The note D is on the next line or fourth line.
The note E is on the space above D.
The note F is on the top line or fifth line.
A good way to remember what notes are on the lines
of the treble clef is to remember the phrase
EVERY GOOD BOY DESERVES FAVOR
You see the E on the lowest line followed by the G,
then the B, then D, and F is on the top line.
If you want to remember the notes on the spaces
you can use the word FACE
You see the F on the lowest space followed by A, then C, then E
Now we can go to the notes below Middle C or the Bass Clef.
Use the same method going down the keyboard.
The note on the space below Middle C is B.
The next note A sits on the top line of the bass clef.
The note G is on the space below A.
The note F is on the next line .
The note E is on the space below F.
The note D is on the next line.
The note C is one octave below Middle C
The note C is on the space below D.
The note B is on the next line below C.
The note A is on the space below B.
The note G is on the lowest line of the Bass clef.
If you want to remember what notes are on the lines
of the bass clef you can remember the phrase
GOOD BOYS DESERVE FAVOR ALWAYS
G is on the lowest line, followed by B on the next line,
then D, then F, and A.
If you want to remember the notes on the spaces of the bass clef
remember the phrase ALL COWS EAT GRASS
A is on the lowest space, C is on the next space, then E, and G.
See the similiarity in the two phrases.
In the treble clef the phrase is Every Good Boy Deserves Favor.
In the bass clef the phrase is Good Boys Deserve Favor Always.
You will want to understand the higher notes above F
on the treble clef such as G, A, and B.
You can see that G sits on top of the entire treble clef
on the space above F and the top line.
A phrase like Mr. G sits on top of the treble clef can help
you to remember that G is above the top line.
A will be the next note and is shown by adding a ledger line
above the treble clef.
B sits on that ledger line above A.
The C is the next octave up. You are now 2 octaves up
from middle C on the keyboard.
The C is shown by adding another ledger line above A.
This high C will be found on the top of the two ledger lines
that are shown above the treble clef.
If you see a note on top of this ledger line it is D.
Then if you see a third ledger line with a note on it that is E.
The high E will found on the top of three ledger lines
that are shown above the treble clef.
Try and remember the three ledger lines above the treble clef
have the notes A, C, and E on them.
You can remember the Am chord has the A, C, and E notes.
Next lesson is the