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I see letters above the staff like DbMa7 (#11). Could you explain? (note: I basically just know that music has notes and you can play em at the same time aka i'm dumb about music)

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    I wouldn't be surprised if this were a duplicate, but if it isn't it deserves a good answer.
    – phoog
    Commented Dec 11, 2019 at 0:33

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It is the chord that's being played at that point, by the person playing the song or in the backing track/other band members (in the occasion of playing in a band)

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    So like if it says CMaj above, you play C Major? Do you need to write the notes on the staff? Commented Dec 11, 2019 at 0:55
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    @DaveRainbowin Depends on the context, however unless it's a jazz lead sheet in which only chord symbols are given, in most cases you only have to follow the score and you'll automatically be playing the chord notate above, likely with the optimal voicing within the context of the song provided the score is well-made, or if you're playing in a band or just jamming with a bunch of friends, the chord could be split into parts and other people might play part of the chord, so if your score says CMaj at the top, you don't have to play C E G, instead you may, for instance just play E.
    – Divide1918
    Commented Dec 11, 2019 at 1:04
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    I don't really understand, but good enough for me. Commented Dec 11, 2019 at 1:06
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    It's hard to explain concretely without actually knowing what your score looks like.
    – Divide1918
    Commented Dec 11, 2019 at 1:08

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