Understanding Sharps and Flats on Guitar Part 2

Now let’s work out the notes on one string.

First, remember that the musical alphabet uses the first seven letters of the alphabet:


Natural Notes Cycle

The letters simply repeat.  So after the note G you will once again have A, B, C, etc.

Let’s start with the A string (the fifth string).

The first note on the A string is the note A.

The next note is a B.  To play the B you go up two frets.  So you will now be on the second fret.

The next note is C.  Now remember that B and C are a semitone (one fret) apart.  This means you just need to go up one fret to find the note C.  You will now be on the third fret.

Next we go to the note D.  To go from C to D you move up two frets.  This means the D is located on the fifth fret.

Next up is the E.  To play the E you move up two frets or a whole tone.  This will take you to the seventh fret.

Now we move up a semitone to locate the note F.  This will put you on the eighth fret.

Move up two frets from F and you will be playing the G found on the tenth fret.

Finally move up two more frets and you will be playing the note A on the twelfth fret.

Notes on the A String

Now try that backwards.

You now understand the basic mechanics behind these notes.  Now of course, if you need to play an E on the fifth string, you won’t want to have to go through all of the above.  If you want to know where the E is, you will want to know its location instantly.  We will look at how to do this shortly, but before we do that, we will look at the sharps and flats on the fretboard…

Understanding the Sharps and Flats on the Guitar Part 3