Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by shattered611, Aug 21, 2005.

  1. shattered611


    Jul 15, 2005
    does anyone know a good way and easy way to memorize and get to know the notes on the fretboard? thanks.
  2. Richard Lindsey

    Richard Lindsey

    Mar 25, 2000
    Metro NYC
    Not to be flip, but you gotta just do it. There's no gimmick, no trick, and no shortcut. Fortunately, it's not really that hard. Not nearly as hard as learning a foreign language.

    Just get a fingerboard chart (they're all over the Web), find a good book with some exercises, and get a decent teacher. There's no mystery to this.
  3. This ties into the does it help to learn piano thread.. basically IMO if you want to learn the fretboard, understand the notes on a piano.

    from a full octave starting on C it goes: C-C#-D-D#-E-F-F#-G-G#-A-A#-B-C

    That is how it will work on a bass.. from the E string, just start there going up the frets and when you get to the 12th it is back to E.
    0 | E
    1 | F
    2 | F#
    3 | G
    4 | G#
    5 | A
    6 | A#
    7 | B
    8 | C
    9 | C#
    10 | D
    11 | D#
    12 | E
  4. Boplicity

    Boplicity Supporting Member

    Whew! This goes back years ago, but as I recall what I did was start with the first three frets and four strings (it was four back in those days, but you may have five). I worked on learning every note in that area, until I felt comfortable with it. Then I'd add two more frets and integrate that area with the previous and that way worked my way up the fretboard to the 12TH fret. AFter that, the notes start over just like the first twelve frets.

    Another approach is to work your way up one string, then the next. I prefer the four strings at one time method, because that is how you play. You don't usually play only on one string. (Well, some beginners do seem to stick to the E-string, playing just roots.)

    Too, another advantage of the four (five) strings at one time approach is that you can play an entire scale, (major, minor, pentatonic,) and chords within that space. Be sure to realize that you can play open strings to help you form the scale. Open strings is when you pluck the string, but do not fret it. That gives you a ringing note.

    Let me add this. Learning the fretboard is a good time to learn to read music too. You can learn where the notes are on the fretboard and how they look written at the same time.

    One last caveat. Some folks like to start on the G-string and learn from that string working up to the E. Others prefer to learn on the E-string and work their way down to the G-string. I prefered starting with the E-string so that I learned the lowest notes on the bass first.

    Oh, really, truly, one last thing. Learning some basslines will help you learn the fretboard too.
  5. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    Flashcards help. Draw a fretboard diagram on one side, and the note on the musical staff on the other. It really helps you learn both the note names and their posistions on the fingerboard.