I recently came across a cool lick that I tried to play, the notations are in tabs. My question is what does 5_5 mean? Due the limitations of a QWERTY keyboard I cannot type the “smile” symbol because QWERTY doesn’t have that. So the underscore _ that you see between the two 5s is actually a “smile” looking symbol. What is that telling me to do and how do you play that? The tab notes looked like this (mind you the underscore is actually a smile looking symbol where the underscore is) 5_5 3 3. The notes are the A and the G on the E string. Since I am asking questions what does this mean in tablature when I see a fret number on the staff that looks like this (5), On the staff it looks like this: (5) 3 3 what is this telling me to do as far as the 5th fret and how do you play that?
Hi @hogank, do you have a recording of the song the tab is based on? That should help you in getting some clues on how these passages are played.
If the author of the tabs stuck to convention, then the “smiley” is most likely a short slide into that note (from below), while the “(5)” means a harmonic on that fret.
Hope this helped a bit!?
Tabs can be very tricky unless you can read music, or you know exactly how the song should sound.
That symbol might also indicate a “bent” note, where you push upward on the string to stretch it out and go up a half step. Good luck to you . . .
I’d love to chime in: I’d need to see the TAB and hear the song that it’s a TAB of to be helpful here.
The curved line between the two 5s is a rhythmic tie.
The note is starting on a beat and tieing into the next beat - in other words, it is a rhythmic notation used in standard notation to indicate an extended duration of the played note.
It really just confuses the tab, if (as most tab readers are) you’re not reading the standard music notation rhythm.
In BassBuzz land, I believe Josh gets rid of all of those, because the general assumption is that TAB folks are using their ears and the TAB, and aren’t reading rhythmic notation.
I never fit in I read the rhythm from the sheet music, and the melody from the tab
“The general assumption is that TAB folks are using their ears and the TAB, and aren’t reading rhythmic notation” That would be me, LOL. I have tried to the rhythmic notation but it takes me to long to figure it out It just easier for me to listen and follow the tabs but I find that, as I have been warned, that tabs aren’t always accurate and often times in videos like these the teacher in the video doesn’t stick to the tabs presented on the screen. I admire people who taken the time and effort to learn music theory. I have dabbled in it though and I still have not figured out it’s relation to playing bass. I know it does have purpose and is as Josh said is very helpful in making you a well rounded bass player. I had a pro bass player tell me “Yeah learning music theory is nice and all but as a beginner worry about technique first because knowing all the music theory in the world doesn’t mean a thing if you sound like crap”.
Ha! This made me laugh.
Same. I go back and forth depending on the line. It’s nice to have the option!