Here’s a mystery tune to help you learn to read sheet music. It’s a familiar melody that you will figure out as you work through the snippets. The magical part is when you realize what tune it is and say “A-ha!”
Try to read each little part using the A part of the exercises below. Then use the B part to listen and see if you read it correctly.
After you’ve worked through the whole tune, you’ll see a tab for the full sheet music. See if you can read the whole tune.
After that, you’ll see a tab for the full tune audio. I suggest you wait on listening to that until you’ve done your best to figure what the mystery tune is with the snippets.
In this lesson, you will be doing something I call Intuitive Note Reading. even without knowing explicit rules, your brain will figure out how to read if it can correlate sheet music snippets with audio chunks.
Full sheet music
Full tune audio - Try to figure out the tune before listening to this!
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Mystery Tune revealed with sheet music pdf!
She’ll Be Comin’ Round The Mountain
Sheet music downloads are available to paid users. Subscribe here. And thanks for your support. 🙏
Mystery tunes are a new thing I’m trying out as a fun way for you to learn note-reading. Please let me know in a comment if it’s helpful or if I could improve on this idea somehow.
Thanks for being a good student. It makes my job fun…
Here is a quick way for you to access the essential practice tools you need. Under each tab you'll find play-along tracks, tabs and condensed teachings to help you as you practice. This is an evolving idea, so let me know in a comment below if it could be better.
Here's a newer version of the Notefinder which is based on sheet music. If you're interested in learning to read, this will be an invaluable reference. I'll be posting lessons on this in 2020.
Note: the brackets indicate notes that are the same pitch but spelled differently. For example, AH3 (D#) sounds the same as AL4 (Eb). Without going into too much teory detail here, this will be determined by the key of the tune or piece you are playing.
Here's he original table version of the Notefinder. Sometimes people learn in different ways...
Sawmill tuning Notefinder
This is used to find notes in Sawmill tuning (when the G string is tuned up to A and the D string is tuned up to E). If you're a beginner...best to ignore this! Learn more about sawmill tuning in the Appalachian Fiddle course.
Here are some common scales used in fiddle tunes. Each runs through a series of variations: two bows legato, two bows staccato, four bows, tucka (4 shorts, two longs), hoedown (1 long, two shorts), throwaway bow, triplets, tremolo.
G Major, starting on D3
Practice a tune with its scale (Kerry Polka is in G major, so practice a G major scale). Practice scales before, during and after practicing tunes.
Always return to a good sound, even if it means playing quarter notes on the D string. You can do this! You just have to remember to pause on practicing the challenging thing and just get a good sound on single notes.
Why do this? Because it will bring you deep joy. And it will build your confidence which will inspire further practice.