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Why you shouldn't use TAB

Discussion in 'Tab, Tips, Theory and Technique' started by BigDaddyLH, Jul 11, 2016.

  1. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    What do you think?

     
  2. thebowl

    thebowl Tele-Meister

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    It is mistitled. He acknowledges in the last minute that there is a role for it to play. The title should be "Why I don't like Tab". Or, "Why Standard Notation is better than tab". And, he didn't need to say that he teaches music. That becomes sorta obvious...

    I think that people who never actually listen to music should avoid tab. For the rest of us, it can be useful.
     
  3. Downshift

    Downshift Tele-Holic

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    Meh...

    Yes I understand that reading music is a valuable skill, an art even, and may become a lost art with time. And when I consider that they might have called TAB "put yer finger here, dummy" I think maybe I should learn to read music as well.

    But...

    TAB is an easy open doorway that gets people playing. And that's what the world needs more of. And as your skills progress, you inevitably have to learn some degree of music theory, making the player more an artist than a dude with a guitar.
     
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  4. Valvey

    Valvey Tele-Holic

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    Most tab programs are a hybrid of tab and standard notation . SO you get the best of both worlds.
     
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  5. VWAmTele

    VWAmTele Friend of Leo's

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    He's presenting a false choice. Tab is just a means to an end.
     
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  6. boredguy6060

    boredguy6060 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I never had a music teacher who liked TAB.
    90% of the songs I wanted to learn were not written in standard notation or written for guitar.
     
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  7. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    he says exactly that at the end.
     
  8. bchaffin72

    bchaffin72 Friend of Leo's

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    As far as that goes, yeah. But you still have to know enough standard notation to know what that portion is telling you.

    Now internet tab is where it gets sketchy. Often, it's JUST the tab(and quite often wrong), so you still have to have listened to the song a lot and really know what the song sounds like to make use of the tab.

    I've used both, but I still prefer straight standard notation.
     
  9. Tarnisher

    Tarnisher Friend of Leo's

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    A pet peeve of mine with "musical educators" is that they make the assumption that their musical culture is the only "real" musical culture. Western Classical music uses notation, and assumes that musicians will sight read as they perform. But the vast majority of musical cultures do just fine without notation and sight reading. They assume that you will learn by ear and by watching other players and teachers, and memorize the non-improvised parts of the music in advance.

    He's right that tablature is not as conducive to sight reading as notation. But that's like criticizing a Telecaster for being too quiet when it's not plugged in to an amp. That isn't how it was designed to be used!!!

    I could be wrong, but I think most people use tabs to learn songs that they've heard before. Tabs help them fill in the gaps so they don't have to figure out each chord by ear. The only time I would ever read tabs as I play is if I just learned a song at a singalong and I need to check what chord to go to on the chorus or something.

    In those cases, musical notation is like a map with so much detail you can't figure out which direction to go.
     
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  10. john_cribbin

    john_cribbin Tele-Afflicted

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    You should use whatever works for you.
     
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  11. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Reading sheet music may become a "lost art", but that won't affect anything I do. I use tab when trying to figure out quicker runs that my ears cannot hear clearly. It's never been a problem.
     
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  12. ebb soul

    ebb soul Poster Extraordinaire

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    I my experience, rock music, wether tabbed out, or printed notes published, are only right about 60% of the time.
    I believe this is partly due to two things. Rock is taken less seriously, transcribed by or relegated to less estute transcribers, who are appearantly not proofread at all,
    And that those who 'wrote' it in the first place don't really know how to really write, or read, at all.
    It's often to a bit like some horn players version.
    Seldom any reguard to the actual tuning employed , register, capo, or anything.
    It's beyond sad. Probably messing up beginners for years, never progressing to a better method, ear training, for years, believing that if it's printed or published, and they paid hard money for the lead sheet, it must be right.
    I consider it straight out fraud, nothing less.
     
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  13. johnny k

    johnny k Poster Extraordinaire

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    The best way to learn a song is to transcribe by ear, because, you listen to the music, play until you find the right thing, then write it down, so when you ve tabbed / wrote sheet music for half the song, you already know how to play it.

    With tabs it s more like, ok i ll play that riff, then this other riff, then the chord part, but once you re through with it, you can t remember it.

    So tabs kind of save time, but it s harder to learn with tabs than to transcribe it yourself.

    In my opinion.

    And sheet music takes a lot of time deciphering when you re not used to it, especially when you ve got those 6 notes chords and you ve got to go, ok this is a d , so ill put my finger here, then go ok this is a g , got it, let s move on, and so on.
     
  14. bchaffin72

    bchaffin72 Friend of Leo's

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    Well, I won't claim to be a FAST sight reader. I've always used it for my own purposes, where I have plenty of time to work through it. If someone just threw sheet music to an unfamiliar song at me and said "Play it now!", I'd be sunk.
     
  15. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    I have to give the guy in the video props for the shout out to Noam Chomsky.
     
  16. Asmith

    Asmith Friend of Leo's

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    I'm never in a situation where I have to sit down and learn something that I don't want to, I learn something because I like it and if I like it, I've listened to it... a lot haha. I think it's useful in situations where you need it but I'm sure many famous guitarists can't read sheet music. Also I use the pro tab thing on ultimate guitar (I got it offered for free a long time ago) and as long as I can find an accurate sounding tab I can make it work quite well as it's really helpful with timings and what not since it allows you to listen to the tab as with a marker to follow where it is. Another thing I use which I also got a couple of years ago is rocksmith (I have the original and the 2014 edition), there's quite a few bands and musicians I like (jack white, muse, etc) and the best way to describe it is like guitar hero except you can plug a real guitar into your console/computer and actually learn how to play something.
     
  17. radiocaster

    radiocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I think from the video I get the idea that Chinese is superior to English because of the writing system.
     
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  18. johnny k

    johnny k Poster Extraordinaire

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    I was wondering who invented tablatures, i thought it was Marcel Dadi, who himself thought he invented it because he wasn t so good at sheet music reading, and was looking for a way for his students to keep a written trace of his exercices.

    Until one of his student told him it had been around already.It looks like they ve been around for a while, to quote wikipedia,

    "Tablature was common during the Renaissance and Baroque eras"

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tablature#Advantages_and_disadvantages_compared_to_standard_notation

    And here is Marcel talking about it, french only i m sorry.

    http://www.marceldadi.com/html/dernieresconfidences.htm
     
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  19. Flat6Driver

    Flat6Driver Friend of Leo's

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    It was a fairly obnoxious video (what I didn't skim through). I see his point, but without TAB I wouldn't have gotten started playing guitar in my dorm room in 1993. I had some music training in school, (Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge) and know what a quarter note is, but had a better feeling on This is How the Song Sounds. So I found it useful there. I also used it to work on my ear training (though I didn't call it that). I just played the tab and said, "this isn't right" something doesn't work here.

    1. Tab does not help you with timing, unless it's one of those really timed out tabs I find on the net occasionally. They are usually a hot mess anyhow.
    2. Tab doesn't help you with fingering. "Here's what frets to hit and in what order" but never really tells you that "oh, it's just a C chord at the 8th fret." which would make things 100x easier.
    3. Tab is accessible by the masses, but you need to recognize it for what it is. Use it with some theory or something else. AND you need to know how the song goes.
    4. Tab and chord charts are not the same thing.
    5. It's not for every situation. I dropped in to play music in church recently. I have done this before, but there's no rehearsals in the summer and these are some songs I have never played before. I'm watching the "lead guy" and reading the chart (w/standard notation and chords) and his hands. He keeps getting to the next chord one beat later than me (correctly). I read the chart by looking at the notes and realize it's a change on the last beat of 4/4 time and was able to adjust. I since I didn't know the song, I used the standard notation (which I really can't sight read) to straighten me out.


    I also play bass. I find TAB horrible for that (at first). There's a lot of tab with no chord changes. If I can marry up the Tab with the chord changes from the guitarist's file, I'm a lot better. Or, just give me the chord changes and I will make up my own bassline.

    On ear training...I have gotten a lot better, BUT when you have bad recordings, multiple effects, etc, etc, tab is a lot of help. Fast high pitched notes past the 12th fret with a lot of gain are very hard for me to sort out by ear, so I use the tab to figure out what I'm listening to.
     
  20. McGlamRock

    McGlamRock Poster Extraordinaire

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    Tab has it's place.
    I remember sitting at my Mom's old computer with dial up modem, waiting for (what felt like) forever for the OLGA to load with -what would inevitably be- a real crap transcription.
    I didn't know it at the time, but correcting those tabs was great ear training exercise. Reading tab also got me started thinking about positions and economy of motion. Tab was like the carrot that tempted to look in the music theory rabbit hole
     
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