{Book Review} Beginner’s Guide to Reading Music

Let me preface this with, I literally don’t know a thing about reading music. At my 1970’s  junior school we were only taught the triangle. In my secondary school there was a music block mostly there for impressing parents, but you weren’t allowed to use it unless you had out of school music lessons and could be trusted. That pretty much ruled my friends and I out of going anywhere near it!

So when Miss L came home from her new school last year, telling me about her ‘Theory of Music’ lessons and Band Classes, I was made up for her. In September she’ll start learning the Cello and it’s dawned on me that she might actually have some music homework and need support at home for learning music, not something at the moment we can really provide!

At the begining of the summer holidays Flame Tree Publishing offered to send me Beginner’s Guide to Reading Music, so I jumped at it, because I will actually have to learn some of this alongside Miss L.  It seems to me with my albeit limited knowledge a comprehensive, well illustrated beginners book which explains what all those funny squiggles are. I now know what all the types of Clef are *proud face*.  If you’re one of those people who actually know a Clef from your elbow, you can look inside the book on Amazon and it’ll give you an idea of what it’s like.

Miss L and I have had a look through it, and she already understood a lot of the early basics in the book. But as the book goes on it builds on the basics, and gives you lots of diagrams to tie in where the music is on the page to where you’d need to place your fingers on an instrument – this is going to come in very handy!  I do think you need an instrument to use with this, or at the very least a piece of software like Garage Band to simulate having an instrument, to help with the exercises.  But it’s a good starters reference guide and I suspect we will be using it a lot in the coming weeks.

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  1. Cellos are gorgeous and easier on the ear in the early stages that a violin (I can say that, being a violinst (of sorts!) myself lol).

    Enjoy learning to read music. It’s a bit like any foreign language really. You learn a few bits, muddy along for a while and then, all of a sudden, it’s like you were born speaking it.