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Meaning of Clefs. Episode 3 Bass Clef Space Notes

Updated: Jul 3, 2021




Hi I'm Chris from Chris at the Piano. This is the episode in our Meaning of the Clef’s series to help you understand the note names, today we're looking at the left hand on the piano or the bass clef. There we go {draws bass clef} and we'll give it the two buttons on its jacket. The bass clef tells us that the note in between these two dots {points at line 4} this one, is F. Now I'm going to draw it over here because I need the space for the other notes but this is F3 and that's what this clef {points to the bass clef} tells us, the bass clef or the F clef. Let's draw the other notes on {the stave} we'll start with this one, then the second line, third line, fourth line and the fifth line.

We have a little rhyme to make it easier to learn all the space notes in one go. The first word is Great which gives us the G; the second is Big which gives us the B; Dogs is the third word which gives us the D; F is the fourth word or Frighten is the fourth word which gives us the F and A is from Auntie. Great Big Dogs Frighten Auntie. Great G this is G2 it's the second G up from the lowest note on the piano G2. B is B2 it's the second B up now with B the very first B on the piano is B0 then you get B1 and then B2.

D is past C so D is D3 because C is where it changes then we have F3 and finally A3, that gives us all our bass clef letter names. On the worksheet that you can download from the website, the details are below, all these are listed on the top line here, if you don't like ‘big dogs frightening auntie’ you can make your rhyme here; do let us know what your rhyme is in the comments. On the next page of the worksheet pack is naming the line notes, I would encourage you to also play them on a keyboard or on an app on your phone or your tablet or if you have a piano, a keyboard or an organ you can play them on there. All you need is one finger to play them and in whatever order they are then you can work out where they are on the piano and how they relate to each other. On the bottom of the worksheet you have to write some notes as crotchets to change these into crotchets, colour them in and the stem goes up on the right if the note is below the third line.

On the third line the stem can go either way, I'm going to put this one down. Above the third line the stem goes down and when we go down we use the left hand side of the note head like so. The stem should be roughly four lines long and the stem should be at right angles to the stave, so make sure that it's at right angles. In one of the videos I discuss not having wavy stems or stems that look like they're blowing over, not too short and not too long, make sure the stems are around about four lines long. You can download the worksheet from the website the details are down below if you need any extra help with note names do leave a message in the comments and myself or one of my team we'll get back to you as soon as we can thank you for joining me and if this has been helpful please like and subscribe bye for now.


Chris Caton-Greasley LLCM(TD) MA (Mus)(Open)

Ethnographic Musicologist, Teacher, Researcher

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