You are here:

Guitar - General/Official guitar tab accuracy

Advertisement


Question
Hi,

I've been playing for a while and do my best to stick with official guitar tabs I want to noodle with something new. Yet,
there always seems to be one or two notes
that just don't feel right. I mean from your experience, just how accurate are offical guitar tabs that are available for purchase?

Answer
Hey Gene, that's a pretty hard question to answer. It depends who did the transcription. If you buy the book online or in a store, (Mel Bay, Hal Leonard etc...) then you're likely going to get a good transcription note wise. However, there's not always tab in those books. (Mine's just a fake sheet with the melody one in notation.) I'd say the best thing to do is use your ear in conjunction with the tab. If you think one note sounds better than another, then use that one. People make mistakes, so do printers & computer software, so it's possible that there are some mistakes. It's also possible that it's dead on perfect & you're just not playing it with the right feel. You'd be really surprised how different something can sound just shifting the accents around from one beat to another. Try this just for fun:

Get out a metronome & set it to around 90 bpm

Count from one to four over & over in your head. Play a barred A Major chord every time you count a new number.

Now, do the same thing, but count: "one and two and three and four" And play the same chord only on the ands.

Then try playing just one chord on the one and on the AND of two .

Example one is just straight ahead & could be used in rock, blues, folk etc.

Example 2 starts feeling like Reggae & example 3 is called a Charleston which is an old big band jazz rhythm.

Accents are EVERYTHING man. They are what gives the music it's life & makes the rhythm have a feel & direction. Anyways, I hope that helps a bit, I thought that I'd share that with you cause when I was learning some of the tunes in one of my Wes montgomery books there were some notes that sounded strange in there as well till I realized they were passing tones & treated them as such. As soon as I took they accents off them, the whole line started to make sense! Good luck bro, just keep at it & you'll get it. Do what I do. Practice till you wanna break shit & then go play video games for a while or something! lol If you need anything else, just drop me a line.

Peace - J.

Guitar - General

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Jason Fryer

Expertise

Jason Fryer is a Canadian musician, producer, recording engineer & music instructor. Born in Montreal, Quebec, he attended the Musician's Professional Workshop on scholarship from Montreal radio station CHOM FM, studied Classical Music & Art at Vanier College, & holds a degree from Herzing Institute in Micro Computer Electronics. A veteran of the Canadian Music Scene, Jason has had the honour of playing with some of Canada’s finest musicians. Juno & Maple Blues award winning artists such as Jerome Godboo, Eric Shenkman, Jerry Mercer, Steve Marriner & Matt Sobb, Al Wood, Murray Kinsley, Leigh-Anne Stanton, Rod Williams, Thomas Starwalker Clair, David Maracle, Greg Morency, Scott Price, Simon Meilleur & Bobby Watt are but a few of the many Canadian greats Jason has enjoyed sharing the stage with. He has also had the rare & esteemed privilege to work with & study under legendary producer/engineer & former V.P. of Island Records Rob Fraboni. (Bob Dylan, The Band, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards, The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, Joe Cocker, Bonnie Raitt) Rob's generosity in sharing his vast & expansive degree of knowledge & expertise in the field of sound recording has been an invaluable asset to Jason's development as a producer & recording engineer.

Experience

I have been playing guitar for over 30 years & tour regularly with my band River City Junction. We play a mix of Blues, Jazz, Funk, Motown, R&B & Classic Rock so I can help answer any questions related to these genres as well. I also have extensive experience using many different brands of guitars, amplifiers & effects. I do most of my own work on my guitars, & I also build & repair my own pedals & tube amps, so I can help with questions of a technical nature with regards to these subjects as well.

Organizations
River CIty Junction Tone King Records

Education/Credentials
Musician's Professional Workshop Scholarship (CHOM FM)
Vanier College (Classical Music - Guitar)
Herzing Institute (Micro-Computer Electronics)
Have taken numerous online courses in recording/engineering

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.