Notes On The Violin: The A String

It’s “A”-bout time!

Hi everyone! We’re back with another article about the fingering hand. This article will cover the notes on the A string of the violin. Here you will learn about the names of the notes corresponding to the Don’t Fret finger locator system. For example, yellow, red, blue, and orange. Remember that the fingers used correspond to the tapes as follows:

  • Yellow=1st finger
  • Red=2nd finger
  • Blue=3rd finger
  • Orange=4th finger

Remember that we are not yet going to use our 4th finger. So don’t worry about that one today. For now, let’s get into our first three fingers. Make sure that you have your Don’t Fret system ready to go. Or, make sure you are using the diagram provided here to follow along.

Yellow Tape

Our first finger on our left hand(or whichever hand you use to play on the fingerboard of the violin), will go on the yellow tape. This is the “B” note.

Red Tape

The red tape is where your second finger goes. This note is called “C#”. Now, just like the D string second finger and the “F#”, we have the “#”, or “sharp” symbol. We discussed this on the D string page as well. Let’s talk about it as it applies here.

“#” – The Sharp Symbol

You may not have seen the “#” symbol in relation to music. Most people know this as a hashtag on Facebook or Twitter, and a pound sign on phones. But in music, the “#” is called a sharp, and it raises or lowers a pitch one half step. I don’t want to confuse you right now as we will deal with it more later, so if this is your first time seeing this symbol, simply attach it to the “C” and remember that the name of the note located on the red tape on the A string is a “C#”, or C sharp.

Blue Tape

The blue tape is where you are going to put your third finger. The letter name of the note that lives on the blue tape is “D”.

Orange Tape

Again, for the sake of being thorough, I’m going to include the 4th tape. The letter name for the note on the orange tape is the “E”. We aren’t going to use the 4th finger just yet, but when we do, this will be the note.

A basic violin truth-The 4th finger is the next open string

This particular “E” note is the same pitch as the open “E” string. A basic truth of violin playing is that the orange tape, or fourth finger, of each string is the same pitch as the next string up. Of course, this stops at the “E” string as there is not another string after that.

Final thoughts

Once again, use the images, the video and these descriptions to help you learn the notes on your A string. Remember that our ultimate goal is to memorize the notes, the fingers, and where they are placed on the fingerboard. Memorizing the letters is one of the best ways for you to jump start your music theory understanding.

Like we have discussed before, if you or your student are young, you can simply start by memorizing the fingers used and the tapes they are assigned to. Remember that we generally always play notes on the tips of our fingers. Keep practicing and I’ll see you at the next article!

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