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What Are Grand Staff Notes? Essential Music Theory

Updated: Jan 8

Mastery of the grand staff is one of the most fundamental concept to master while learning to play the piano.


Most of the piano music is written on the grand staff.


As a result of the greater range of the grand staff, we can clearly distinguish between sections of our music that should be performed with the left hand and sections that should be played with the right hand.


At first look, the notes on grand staff may appear to be an overwhelming amount of information to process.


However, if you go carefully and methodically, you will discover that the grand staff is really lot easier to read than you imagined.


The grand staff is made up of two staves: the treble and bass clef, which are connected with a bracket to form a whole.


Upper Staff (Treble Clef) - Right Hand

Lower Staff (Bass Clef) - Left Hand

Lower Staff (Bass Clef) - Left Hand



The roles played by the left and right hands may readily be distinguished.


A staff or stave is a set of five horizontal lines and four spaces that each represent a different musical pitch.

The upper staff makes use of what is known as a treble clef, while the lower staff uses a bass clef.


The upper staff makes use of what is known as a treble clef, while the lower staff uses a bass clef.

Middle C


The middle C is located in the middle of the two staves.


Middle C can be written on the extra short line above the lower staff or on extra short line below the higher staff.


When you encounter a grand staff, you should play the notes on the upper staff (treble staff) with your right hand and the notes on the lower staff (bass staff) with your left hand when you encounter a grand staff.



Grand Staff Notes: Landmark Notes


It's noteworthy that both treble clef and bass clef have some landmark notes which are mirror image of each other.


Landmark notes are able to help you to understand the relationship between notes and strategically tell the specific position on the keyboard.


Besides, you are able to figure out the remaining notes easily once you memorize all these landmark notes and their position.


Treble Clef also called as G clef (line 2)


Bass Clef also called as F clef (line 2)

mirror image


Step and Skip Notes

Step and Skip Notes

On the staff, step (second) always goes from line to space or space to line.


Skip (third) always goes from line to line or space to space.







Grand Staff : Notes on the Treble Staff


First and foremost, we'll take a look at the lines of the top staff, also known as the treble staff.


On the treble staff, the notes for the lines are written as follows:


As mentioned earlier, skip always goes from line to line.

Starting from Middle C, E, G, B, D, F and A.


Skip always goes from space to space. Starting from D, F, A, C, E and G.


When the notes appearing towards the top of a staff, which are said to be "higher". It indicates the piano keys are moving towards right hand side of Middle C with higher sound.

Treble clef



Grand Staff : Notes on the Bass Clef


We now take a look at bass staff notes.


These notes are mostly focused on notes that are lower than middle C on your piano.


When the notes appearing towards the bottom of a staff, which are said to be "lower". It indicates the piano keys are moving towards left hand side of Middle C with lower sound.
Bass Clef

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