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How to Read Sheet Music

Learning to play piano is a difficult task…tack on learning how to read sheet music and you might start to feel slightly overwhelmed! Learning to read music sounds very daunting to someone who hasn’t ever read sheet music before but do not be afraid! Reading music is not as hard as you think and with practice it will just keep getting easier.

The basics of how to read sheet music are simple. Follow along with what the sheet music tells you to do. It is simply a matter of learning the “language” of sheet music and how it translates into the piano keyboard.

The basics are covered here, but for more advanced study, you may want to look into some courses offered at the local community college or online. Most of the courses I review on this site also teach you how to read music, but not much more than this site teaches you for free!

There are a few sections of reading music that I will cover with you and they are outlined in a handy dandy list below…

  • The musical staff and clefs
    • This will give you an overview of the standard way to write music and what the lines that its written on mean.
  • Measures and Repeats
    • This tutorial will focus on what a measure is and what repeats are (duh…) and helps develop more foundational skills when reading music.
  • Musical Note Durations
    • This page will help you decipher what different shaped and colored notes mean and how long or short to play them.
  • Musical Rests
    • Given the name…its easy to see that this page covers what a rest in music is. Rests are just as important as notes!
  • More Advanced Sheet Music Symbolsand their meaning
    • This will brief you on what else there is to look out for when reading music.
  • Piano Pitch
    • This one is really important in order to know what notes to play on the piano and how they relate to written music.

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