I'm very new to the world of music, literally a beginner and i've just started learning the basics of sheet music. enter image description here

I'm having trouble understanding how these lines and spaces of the staff are named (the letters at the left side.) Can someone help me understand this? Thanks. This image is not mine, It's from here:


  • There’s a great rhyme you can learn so you can remember these notes.
    – cmp
    Jul 21, 2020 at 8:45
  • @cmp - that rhyme is more likely a mnemonic, for the line names. Rhymes rhyme. FACE - space, true. Unless you have one that does?
    – Tim
    Jul 21, 2020 at 9:25

3 Answers 3


Each line ansd space has a letter name dedicated to it. That name never changes. On the treble clef, the name of the note on the bottom line is E. Space above, F and so on.

You'll see notes below (and above) the staff, and they are sequential, too. So hanging under the bottom line will be D, and sometimes there will be extra little lines under that - ledger lines, so making the second note you see a C. That's actually middle C.

The same idea continues above the staff, making the note on the ledger line above it an A.


Every line and every space corresponds to a single note.

The blue letters correspond to the line next to them and the green letters correspond to the space next to them.

So you can look at a line or a space, follow it to the left and you can read which note is is.

If you read the letters from bottom to top, they are (A) - B - C - D - E - F - G - A - B - C - [...]

Just like a pinao where the (white) notes are layed out the same, but from left to right instead of bottom to top.

There are cases where a line or a space could potentially correspond to a flattened or sharped note (the black keys on a piano). In this case these notes are marked with a flat (b) or a sharp (#) sign. Another possibility is when you have another key signature than C/Am. In these cases the key signature will be notated with flats or sharps in the beginning of the peace and depending on the key signature some lines and spaces could correspond to a flattened or sharped note (the black keys on a piano). But you will learn later about that.


Lines and spaces are named after the note occupying that line or space (green are the spaces, blue the lines.)

Whether it is sensible to give names to blank space, where only a ledger line can provide orientation is another question.

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