I am learning guitar on my own no i found something written on music sheet which is below

enter image description here

My Understanding : From E string strum 8 fret then hammer on 10 (not sure if we need to do pull off please clarify the same) then slide to 7 fret strum it and then hammer on 8 fret and so on

Now i see another notes as below :

So why these line (2 and 3 are bind together using long lines) can't understand it please need the explanation for the same enter image description here

  • 2
    Has anyone else noticed that first triplet - three dotted 16th notes beamed as a triplet. Three dotted 16ths in the time of two dotted 16ths, i.e in the time of three 16ths. I think it would have been much clearer to notate that as just three 16th notes? In fact, when I saw the question title, I was expecting it to be about that triplet, not about the TAB notation… Jan 28, 2020 at 12:41
  • @BrianTHOMAS My first thought too when I saw the image. This is terrible notation, and beginning with three straight sixteenth notes is the only acceptable solution, it seems to me.
    – Richard
    Feb 26, 2020 at 18:49
  • I love how bonkers (but obviously redundant and ridiculous) that notation is! It reminds of a composition pupil I once taught, suggesting that a melody could simply be written all in crotchets, with new metronome markings used for all changes of note length. I just stared at him open mouthed... Feb 26, 2020 at 19:15

3 Answers 3


The TAB is telling you what fret and string to play the notes corresponding to the standard music notation on the staff above. The arc under groups of notes is a slur and indicates that the notes should be played without right hand attack. So yes you need to hammer on and pull off in the first example. It looks like groups of three notes, triplets, played as a single unit. You can and should attack (pick) at the start of each new group. The small numbers in the staff under each note indicate the finger to use. So the first two groups of triplets are played in the same position with fingers (2 and 4) followed by fingers (1 and 2). Then they want you to shift down and use fingers (1 and 3) for the next two groups, shifting for each group. I'm not sure why they stopped there and didn't put fingering under the last group but it would have to be (1 and 3) again if there are no accidentals.

In the second example is a trill. Same idea, the slur indicates that you keep the energy going by pull off and hammer on of the left hand fingers (fretting hand for those who play the opposite way). You have to keep this trill going without picking for 2 measures. Not sure how you would even play the small chord up at the 30th fret. They do make 36 fret guitars (I played one in the late 80s) but that's rare and I'd have see the entire score to make a judgement as to whether that's a harmonic of a fretted note, and how it would be played.


First part, yes play 8th fret, hammer-on 10th, pull off to 8 again (keep a finger on fret 8 ready for the pull off).

The G/F♯ semiquavers are played alternating, as written, on the bottom string. The other numbers are strange though - frets 30 and 31. Maybe it's harmonics on the top 4 strings, but the actual music notes are off screen high on ledger lines above the stave. An equivalent of the harmonics around the 5th fret?, or around the middle of the soundhole on an acoustic, roughly. A screenshot slightly higher will give better clues.


In TAB notation, whenever there are legato sections of tied notes, you should pick / strum the first note of the set and then use hammer-ons and/or pull-offs to sound the other notes. In your first example, if you follow the notation exactly, you should fret the note on the eighth fret on the low E string (using your middle finger), pick it, then hammer-on to the tenth fret (using your fourth finger for this) and then pull-off back to the eighth (your second finger should remain on the eighth fret throughout). Then, do the same starting on the seventh fret, hammering-on to the eighth and then pulling-off back to the seventh.

In the second example, you should continuously hammer-on and pull-off on the second and third frets. When doing these longer runs, your "pull-off" needs to slightly "twang" the string in order to sustain the note long enough for it not to die out before the end of the legato section.

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