Getting Started

Learn Strings Experience the joys of playing a stringed instrument!
  
    Whether you are new to strings, or trying out a new instrument, try the tablature system so that you can quickly play a recognizable tune, like Mary Had A Little Lamb.

    Learning scales, notation, keys, chords, and all that stuff will come - If you stick with it. In the meantime, you will be actually playing music! That, I think, makes learning music all the more enjoyable.  
Note:  References to Dulcimer in these pages refers to the instrument also called the Appalachian, mountain, plucked or lap dulcimer.

Easy - Beginning songs -     These basic songs are written in notation with tablature for string instruments, primarily violin and mandolin. Some also show tabs for mountain dulcimer, guitar or bass.

If you already play a stringed instrument, by all means move on to:
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Tablature

Tablature
The example from Mary Had A Little Lamb  illustrates tablature for four different
instruments.

Tab example
http://oldgleaner.com/images/music/MaryLamb_D.jpg
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Easy Lesson Pages  - These basic songs are written in notation with tablature

Mary Had A Little Lamb - Key of D - Notation in treble and bass clefs and tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer, bass. Shows chords for accompaniment.

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
- Key of D - also known as the A B C Song. Tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer.

BaaBaa Black Sheep - Key of D - Similar to 'Twinkle' with a few added notes. Tabs for violin, mandolin, guitar.

Go Tell Aunt Rhody - Key of D - Familiar folk song. Tabs for guitar, violin, mandolin, dulcimer and bass. Chords for G and D7 for guitar, mandolin and  ukulele.

Kumbaya - Key of D - A favorite Gospel song " . . . O Lord, kumbaya." Tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer. Introduces the 8th note, dotted quarter note, and the tie symbol.

Jacobs Ladder - Key of D -  "Another well-know Gospel song, We are climbing Jacobs ladder;" Tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer. Notation for duet harmony instrument.  The letter names are shown under the notation.  (D, F#,G etc.)

Little Liza Jane - Key of D - Peppy tune, sometimes played for square dancing, yet is easy to learn. Tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer. Introduces the 'repeat' sign, and dotted half note.

Sweetly Sings the Donkey
- Key of D - Can be played as a 'round.' Tabs for violin, mandolin, dulcimer and guitar. Introduces the half rest sign.

God Is So Good - Key of G - Tabs for violin, mandolin, guitar. Written for two different fingerboard positions. Introduces transposition - playing in different keys.

Are You Sleeping (Brother John) - Key of F - Duet/round - Tabs for violin, mandolin.

Hush Little Baby - Key of G, with chord accompaniment and lyrics - Tabs for violin, mandolin. Chords - G, D7  - for guitar, mandolin, ukulele.

Amazing Grace - Key of G, 3/4 time - A standard for nearly all instruments. Tabs for guitar, violin, mandolin. Explains tied notes; bars and slurs.

Bile (Boil) Them Cabbage Down - Key of D - Popular fiddle and mountain song. Can be a 'show-off' tune. Words and notation, with variations.

The Bells of St. Marys - Key of G - Tabs for violin, mandolin. A good scale practice.

I'm A Little Teapot - Key of C, 2/4 time - Tabs for violin, mandolin. Introduces playing two notes on different string simultaneously - 'double-stopping' . Also includes a triad (three notes.)


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