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Music Note Symbols, Sheet Music Symbols

Learn to read music notes - music note names, including pictures of music notes.
Learn how to read music notes!

I've also covered these music note symbols lessons in video format below, so you can listen and watch as you learn.
















Music notes tell you what key to play on the piano, and how long (ie the duration, or how many beats) to play the sound for.

Here are some of the most common sheet music symbols, which are used for almost all instrumental music.

Let's start with a quarter note, (also sometimes called a crotchet note).


reading-music-notes-3

Crotchet/Quarter Note

They look a little bit like a tadpole. The 'tail' can go up or down. A crotchet symbol means that you need to play the sound (or key, on the piano), for one beat, or count.




A minim, or half-note, looks like a tadpole, too, but the 'head' is white rather than black.


free-piano-notes

Minim/Half Note

When you play this note on the piano, you need to hold the key down for two counts or beats.




Another common note symbol you'll see is a semibreve, or whole note. It looks like a plain oval, or circle, shape.

This means you hold the key down for four counts.


piano-notes-chart

Semibreve/Whole Note



More Music Symbols


















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