Introduction

The beauty of guitar tab is that it is extremely easy to learn. Talking Tab is no different, and you will be up and running in no time.

Until now, the millions of guitar tab files available on the web have been completely inaccessible to visually impaired musicians. Not any longer.

We support the Guitarpro file format, which covers most of the tabs from sites like Ultimate Guitar and tabs 911.

Upload the file to Talking Tab, press the convert button, and then scrole down to view a screen reader friendly version of the tab.

You can then copy and paste the tab into your favourite note taker, and either read it with your preferred screen reader, or send it to a Braille embosser.

Rhythm signs

Rhythm signs are placed directly before the note to which they correspond (without a space.)

A new rhythm sign is generally only used on a new line, or when the note value changes to something else, I.E. a run of quarter notes changes to 8th notes.

Rhythm signs are always capital letters.

B = breve
W = whole note
H = Half note
Q = quarter note
E = 8th note
S= 16thnote
T = 32nd note
Y = 64th note
YY = 128th note

A rhythm sign followed by a space = a rest.

Example:

The letter Q followed by a space = a quarter note rest.

Example:

H. = dotted half note.

Written pitches

The strings of the guitar are represented by the numbers 1 to 6.

1 = 1st string (top E)
2 = 2nd string (B)
3 = 3rd string (G)
4 = 4th string (D)
5 = 5th string (A)
6 = 6th string (bottom E )

Frets are represented by the numbers 0 to 24, or however high it needs to go.

0 = open string
1 = 1st fret
2 = 2nd fret
3 = 3rd fret etc
10 = 10th fret
20 = 20th fret, etc.

Putting the fret and string together is easy. The first number represents the fret or open string, and the 2nd number represents the string itself.

There is no space between the fret and the string number.

Because there are always only 6 strings, you won't get confused between which number is a fret and which is a string.

Example:

01 = open first string (open top E string)
02 = open 2nd string (B)
03 = open 3rd string (g)
04 = open 4th string (d)
05 = open 5th string (a)
06 = open 6th string (bottom E)
11 = 1st fret, 1st string (F)
21 = 2nd fret, 1st string (F sharp)
101 = 10th fret, 1st string (D)
102 = 10th fret, 2nd string (A)

The number of frets on the guitar varies, but they nearly always have 6 strings. therefore, if you see 3 numbers like 201, the first 2 numbers are the fret (20 and the last number is the string (1).

Single line melodies

Single line melodies have a space between each note. This helps to differentiate between melodies and chords.

Example:

01 21 31 51 = e, f-sharp, g, a on the 1st string.

Rhythm signs are placed before the note to which they correspond.

Q01 = quarter note open 1st string (top e)

Q01 E21 E31 Q51 = quarter note open 1st string, 8th note 2nd fret 1st string, 8th note 3rd fret 1st string, quarter note 5th fret 1st string.

Chords

Chords don't have a space between each note, but rather, have a space on either side, I.E. before the first note and after the last note, to show the beginning and end of the chord.

Example:

010213240506 = an e major chord, open 1st, open 2nd, 1st fret 3rd string, 2nd fret 4th string, 2nd fret 5th string, open 6th string.

Q010213240506 = quarter note E major chord, as above)

Barlines

A barline is represented by the letter l with a space on either side.

New lines

l1 b1 = line 1 bar 1.

l2 b5 = line 2 bar 5.

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