If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website.

If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.kastatic.org and *.kasandbox.org are unblocked.

Main content
Current time:0:00Total duration:3:04

Lesson 2: Ledger lines and the octave

Video transcript

if we would like a note below the D which is on the bottom of the staff we need to add what is called a ledger line if we add this ledger line we then can put a note on that line and it will be a c1 note below the D this ledger line can be used in either direction so the note above the treble clef staff is a G if we add a ledger line and put a note on that ledger line it will be an A these ledger lines can be used above or below the staff and there is no limit to how many ledger lines we can add but after four or five ledger lines and notes become very difficult to read let's go back to the single ledger line below the treble clef staff this note is a C if we add a note below this ledger line we create a B and if we add a second ledger line and place a note on that second ledger line it will be an A we always remember that it is the seven letters of the alphabet that we use in naming notes so if we're at a C and go down descending in pitch then it goes to a B and if we add a second ledger line and place a note on that line it will be an A now let's look at all the different notes that we've discussed from the a below the treble clef staff to the a above the staff now we see there are three A's one below the staff one in the middle of the staff and one above the staff these three notes all sound like the same pitch but one is low one is in the middle register one is high if we count from the low a to the middle a we see that the middle a is the 8th note above the low a the distance from one a to the next is called an octave which comes from the Latin octave ah meaning 8 part we can now read 2 octaves of music on the treble clef the low a to the middle a is one octave the middle a to the a above the staff is the 2nd octave there are two memorization tools that some use to remember the treble clef notes the spaces are face.4 s' spells face and the lines are e G B D F every good boy does fine