Playing the guitar has to be one of the greatest music hobbies, but sooner or later you'll need to find some new guitar music to play. This is true even if you're an experienced guitarist and write your own music. It's always fun to learn a new song on the radio or a classic song that you may have grown up with. Two great ways to learn songs is with guitar sheet music or guitar tabs.
Guitar sheet music is written in standard music notation, and if you haven't been trained on how to read it, the sheet music won't help you much. It uses symbols to represent the pitch, the rhythm, the feel and the duration of each note. Musical notation is like a musical alphabet that allows you to recreate the specific sound of the music exactly as the author intended. While it takes some time to master how to sight-read sheet music, it is the most accurate way to document how a song sounds.
You can find guitar sheet music by visiting a good musical instrument retailer near you, or by searching online. With a computer, printer, Internet connection and some paper, it's possible to print off the guitar sheet music that you find online; some sites may charge a fee to download the file.
While not quite as accurate as sheet music, guitar tablature is a much easier way for beginners to learn what notes to play. Rather than symbolizing the pitch on a treble clef as in standard sheet music, guitar tabs only have six lines – one for each string on the guitar. Tabs for bass guitar have four lines corresponding to the four strings on a bass. On each line is a number which indicates the correct position on the neck to push down the string to get the right note.
While this is an accurate way to learn the correct pitch of the note, its downfall is that it is harder to convey rhythm with guitar tab. Tablature works best if you're familiar with the music already or have a copy of it that you can listen to repeatedly to address this short-coming.
Finding free guitar music online is easier if you're willing to use guitar tab; it's more common than guitar sheet music since it's so much easier to learn how to read. If you're looking for classical music for acoustic guitar, you may have difficulties finding tablature, but if you're looking for country music guitar tab it should be easy to find online. You can also find guitar tab books at music retailers. They are often organized by band and album or as a particular genre of music with a mix of different artist contributions.
Whether you can read music notation and want guitar sheet music, or you prefer learn with guitar tab, you can find what you need either online on with a trip to your local music retailer.