How To Read Music- Treble Clef Notes & Bass Clef Notes

Hello Aspiring Musicians!

Today I’m going to teach you the names of the music notes on the staff.  If you don’t already know the names of the notes on the keyboard, you’ll need to learn them first- Check out this video.


There are 5 lines and 4 spaces on the music staff.

Music Staff

Each of these lines and spaces represent an individual note on the keyboard. In vocal and piano music, there are two different clefs that appear on the staff. A clef is a musical symbol used to indicate the pitch of written notes.


                                                  Treble Clef                       Bass Clef

Treble and Bass Clef

Let’s start with the treble clef notes.

Treble clef is the clef most often used in vocal music. For this reason, it is my favorite clef. (No offense bass clef, you’ve got your charm). In choral music, female voice parts are written in the treble clef. Music written for a soloist (male or female) is almost always written in treble clef as well.

You can use mnemonic devices (a learning technique that aids information retention) to learn the names of the music notes on the staff.

treble clefThe first letter of each word in the phrase “Every Good Boy Deserves Fun” can be used to remember the notes written on the lines of the treble clef. EGBDF

In treble clef the spaces from bottom to top spell the word “FACE”.


Treble Clef Notes


Now bass clef notes!


bass_clef   Use the phrase “Good Boys Do Fine Always” to remember the lines on the bass clef and “All Cows Eat Grass” to remember the spaces.

music notes in bass clef


In choral music male voice parts are written in bass clef ( with the exception of the tenor part.)

How to practice

The mnemonic devices are a good way to learn the note names in the beginning, but to effectively read music you need to be able to identify each note immediately by sight. Flash cards are a great tool for drilling the note names. Click Here for an inexpensive set of flash cards that will help you practice.

Try quizzing yourself by opening a piece of music and naming notes. You’ll notice that some notes are outside (above and below) the staff.  These are called ledger line notes and we’ll visit them in the next lesson.


  • Paul Phiri

    Reply Reply March 18, 2017

    Please illustrate the bass clef notes

    • Meghan Nixon

      Reply Reply March 28, 2017

      Hi Paul! Thanks for the comment. The bass clef notes are illustrated here. Just look at the bottom of the post.

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