If you are subscribed to Ultimate Guitar’s Tab Pro and would like to read drums to do a cover of your favorite song or you are simply a team of one willing to record all instruments in order to play guitar along with it (just like me) you will be wondering what the heck do those numbers for the drums mean.
After purchasing Epiphone’s Les Paul Standard PlusTop guitar I got hungry for playing some nice guitar solos. I’m somewhere close to being an intermediate guitar player and in order to enhance my playing skills and enjoy playing guitar I chose couple of solos and while searching for tabs I came across Tab Pro.
The guitar tabs seem to be very accurate. So I decided to record all other instrument parts in the GarageBand. When I switched to drum part, I couldn’t understand what the hell those numbers meant.
Previously I have used Jelly Note and they have quality tabs as well with all instruments. It’s very similar to Tab Pro. But the difference is that Jelly Note has standard drum notation that was fairly easy to figure out.
Now, about Tab Pro’s drum tabs. After thinking for a while I figured out that those numbers could be the number of keys on the piano that in fact map with my midi keyboard.
And after searching for a while I came across an article on Wikipedia. It states that General MIDI or GM is a standardized specification for music synthesizers that respond to MIDI messages. The part about Percussions states:
“In GM standard MIDI files, channel 10 is reserved for percussion instruments only. Notes recorded on channel 10 always produce percussion sounds when transmitted to a keyboard or synth module which uses the GM standard. Each of the 128 different possible note numbers correlate to a unique percussive instrument, but the sound's pitch is not relative to the note number.
If a MIDI file is programmed to the General MIDI protocol, then the results are predictable, but the sound fidelity may vary depending on the quality of the GM synthesizer”.
You can find a long list of key numbers corresponding to percussion.
And to have it better illustrated here’s the image from that article:
I hope this helps you read drum tabs on Tab Pro and you will enjoy playing music! Just in case if you have any further questions feel free to reach me by sending me an email or finding me on social networks. Links can be found down below. Cheers!