dig­i­tal con­ver­sion

Guitar Techniques - - TALK BACK - Matthew Wil­son

I’m a new dig­i­tal sub­scriber to GT who, be­ing a hob­by­ist, was find­ing my­self mainly just play­ing some favourite songs rather than prac­tic­ing and there­fore not mak­ing much progress as a player. I’m find­ing the iPad edi­tion a nice way to both try out some new things and ac­tu­ally do some real prac­tice. I found the let­ter in Talk­back in­ter­est­ing, how­ever, where the reader was say­ing to only bother with show­ing tab. My read­ing is very slow and with tab avail­able and of­ten more use­ful to read quickly as a gui­tarist it isn’t likely to get much faster in a hurry.How­ever, I agree with what Steve Vai once said, that a mu­sic score is it­self a thing a beauty, and see­ing the chord names and com­plete har­mony re­ally does help you get a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of why some­thing works. Please there­fore do keep up with the stan­dard no­ta­tion!

One thing that can be miss­ing still for gui­tarists, even with tab and a score, is where you need to fin­ger a chord shape and yet only play some of th­ese notes - of­ten in dif­fer­ent ways. For ex­am­ple Eric John­son of­ten plays those beau­ti­ful mixed harp har­monic and stan­dard note arpeg­gios and with­out a quick way of see­ing the chord shape to fin­ger you can’t re­ally sight read and play the notes at speed on the spot. Maybe a chord box is what’s re­quired?

Fi­nally, is it me or are there fewer tran­scrip­tion books for com­plete al­bums th­ese days? I have all the Joe Sa­tri­ani books up to and in­clud­ing Black Swans and Worm Hole Wizards, but there has never been a book for Un­stop­pable Mo­men­tum or Shock­wave Su­per­nova. The same with Chick­en­foot III. Yes, there were some­times er­rors or sim­pli­fi­ca­tions in the of­fi­cial books but they were still a bet­ter start than most of the ef­forts you find online. Th­ese days all the books just seem to be re­cy­cled ‘best ofs’ which have all been avail­able over for years. I don’t know if it is artist pop­u­lar­ity or the eco­nom­ics of print­ing books

but it is dis­ap­point­ing. We to­tally agree about no­ta­tion, Matthew, so have no fear, it will be stay­ing. We do try to put chord boxes in where we feel it would help, but of­ten space is the issue and we end up hav­ing to cram things in where we’d re­ally like to spread them out. Point taken, though. I don’t have an an­swer on the tab book sit­u­a­tion, but th­ese things are usu­ally about sup­ply and de­mand, so per­haps peo­ple are more in­ter­ested in Ed Sheeran and Gabrielle Aplin chord song­books than high-end rock gui­tar?

The GT iPad ver­sion is an in­cred­i­bly user­friendly op­tion

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