Back in December I began a series of posts discussing reference books that would benefit teachers to have in their library. This month I’ll continue and talk about some good books for sight reading. I know most guitarists don’t read or don’t read well, but working on it with a student is a good way to dive in and practice that skill!
Before one even starts to read notes on the staff, it is a great idea to become familiar with rhythms. Rhythmic Training is good book to start with and there is an also a workbook available with various rhythm drills.
Dr. Charles Colin and Bugs Bower
This book emphasizes short eighth measure melodic studies, focusing specific rhythms with accompanying chords above. The rhythms don’t get much faster than eight notes and also supplies examples of picking patterns.
This book has been in my library for years! There are one and two page studies and it emphasizes working with sixteenth note rhythms. One of the things that is unique is that it offers a rhythm guitar part with its own accompanying rhythm. It is from the Berklee Series and is out of print, but if you come across a copy that is not too pricey it is worth it.
The title says it all – studies in all positions. Of course you can read music in any position, but this is organized and helps to break down the fretboard positions and offers studies which are specific to each.
Looking for a challenge? This is it! The book has position studies, but the trick is the notes are entirely random. This book can be frustrating, but you’ll get to know the notes - that’s for sure.