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May 3, 2007
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Musicians Who Can't Read Music?

:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
I am writing a paper for a music class I am taking and I need to find a list of famous musicians who can't/couldn't read music. I've searched through Google for something, anything that would help, but no such luck.

Does anyone here know of any famous musicians who were not able to read written music?

Thanks!
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Devious Comments

:iconfixmeknow:
FixMeKnow Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2010
Necro thread.



:lock:
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:iconwarhammer89:
Warhammer89 Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2010
Jimi Hendrix.
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:iconmladen:
mladen Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Django Reinhardt.
Very famous jazz guitarist raised in the 'Gypsy' tradition of learning music.

[link]
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:iconausgebombt:
ausgebombt Featured By Owner May 4, 2007  Professional Interface Designer
[link]

Google ftw. It's jazz musicians though.
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:iconliojen:
Liojen Featured By Owner May 4, 2007  Professional Traditional Artist
Prince can't read music

Nobuo Uematsu is very slow to read it

As far as I know, most pop stars can't read.
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:iconallie-m:
Allie-M Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
put me up! :lol:

I kinda hate that though :c
'specially,when my friends ask me to play something
I look at the paper and am like wth is this
and then I go: can you sing a few notes,maybe I know it and'll
find the music he he...^^;
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:iconundefined22:
undefined22 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
James Taylor and Tommy Emmanuel.
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:iconklausio:
klausio Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
I know that the following musicians are self-educated:

Elvis Presley
Saul Hudson (Slash)
Dave Murray (Iron Maiden)
Jimi Hendrix

I hope this can help you!
greetings
klausio
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:iconvagabond-otaku:
vagabond-otaku Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
ummmm, i think kirk hammet couldnt read sheet so he just read tab so that technically noit being able to read music, and micheal ammott of arch enemy just couldnt read it at all until he got training after like 2 years after starting as a gutiarist
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:icontome89:
Tome89 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
I can't. :aww:

Well Aphew Twin neither.
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:iconpyrokinetic-punker:
pyrokinetic-punker Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
I know that Mike Patton (Mr. Bungle, Fantomas, Faith No More, Tomahawk) and Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys, Lard) can't read music and I consider them two of the greatest musicians ever.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Cool. Thanks!
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:iconbrokenquill:
brokenquill Featured By Owner May 3, 2007   Writer
BB King
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thanks for replying! This a perfect example of what I was looking for!
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:iconjokermachine:
JokerMachine Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
The frontman of Sublime?
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Does he perhaps have a name? I'm not too familiar with Sublime...
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:iconjokermachine:
JokerMachine Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
I can't remember it for shit. It's.... -goes to check Wikipedia- ah yes. Brad Nowell.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Cool. thanks!
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:iconjokermachine:
JokerMachine Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Yes indeedy.
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:iconretnea:
retnea Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
The Beatles.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thanks!
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:iconfriendofestlin:
friendofEstlin Featured By Owner May 3, 2007   Writer
I know Yanni couldn't read music, so he made up his own form of music notation. so that kinda cool.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
What a wonderful example! Thanks for replying!
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:iconmut3dfaith:
Mut3DFaith Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
The frontwoman of the Dresden Dolls...pianist.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
I wasn't aware she didn't know how to read music. I would have thought she'd be the first ones on this list of music readers, seeing as piano is such a big part of her music. That's very interesting. Thanks for replying!
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:iconzeruch:
zeruch Featured By Owner May 3, 2007  Professional General Artist
There are a few who are well known as technically adept but cant read a note: bassist Mick Karn, composer/singer Danny Elfman couldn't for years as well as pianist Dave Brubeck. John Lennon and Ringo Starr of the Beatles, Wes Montgomery, and Buddy Rich among many others.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thanks for the reply. I was unaware that Lennon and Starr couldn't read sheet music, nor did I know that Elfman couldn't read it either. This was very helpful.

(I'm also glad to see I sparked quite a lengthy conversation ^.^)
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:icongraphikjunkie:
GraphikJunkie Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Ringo Starr

I'm amazed to find drummers that can't read sheet music. It's probably the most simpliest notation of any instrument.
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:iconzeruch:
zeruch Featured By Owner May 3, 2007  Professional General Artist
It isn't that simple. What it lacks in key changes (unless you are doing strictly Timpani or some other tuned percussion) it makes up for in covering things like ghost strokes, changes in feel (straight, shuffle), accenst, and unlike strings, brass and woodwinds, which generally have fixed constructions, a drumkit can vary wildly.

I am quite sure some of the stuff Terry Bozzio writes is not transferrable to a 4 piece Gretch kit and a hi-hat.
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:icongraphikjunkie:
GraphikJunkie Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Obviously, but I was more or less speaking on the level of drummers not being able to read the most simple 4-5 piece kit, hi hat/crash/ride type of notations.

Though of course, the additons of ghost notes, accents and such aren't really that much of a hassle either. Dunno, might just be a lucky one that got taught how to read when I took lessons.
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:iconzeruch:
zeruch Featured By Owner May 3, 2007  Professional General Artist
I actually can't read myself, at least not in any way that allows me to play at the same time...I can parse out a figure and then attempt to play it based on complexity; but some of the music strikes me as non-trivial, unless all you are supposed to do is play straight time with little in the way of changes or complex fills.
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:iconithiel:
Ithiel Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Drummers also have a better time picking things out by ear. At least, drummers I know. Maybe I just don't know enough bad drum players...
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:icongraphikjunkie:
GraphikJunkie Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
That is very true. I dunno, I'm able to do both. I'm just more referring to being able to read the transcripts in teaching books. Pretty straightforward notations.
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:iconrose-chainsaw:
Rose-Chainsaw Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Mana, guitarist for Mio Dix Mois. Really popular gothic metal band from Japan. He's admitted to not knowing how to read music.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thanks!
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:iconfreezeframed:
FreezeFramed Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Jimi Hendrix and stevie Ray Vaughan couldnt read music.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
I was fairly sure about Hendrix, but I didn't know about Stevie Ray Vaughn. Thanks for replying!
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:iconslinkydink:
slinkydink Featured By Owner May 3, 2007   Photographer
Irving Berlin couldn't really read music. He only wrote songs in the key of F sharp, because it was the only key he could play in since he only knew the black keys on the piano. When he wrote songs, he actually used a special piano and a transcriptionist to help him.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thank you! This is a perfect example.
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:iconslinkydink:
slinkydink Featured By Owner May 4, 2007   Photographer
No problemo. :)
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:iconisaidthatsblasphemy:
Isaidthatsblasphemy Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Dave Brubeck
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
Thanks!
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:iconfoxwmulder:
FoxWMulder Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Mozart
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:iconanimatedsustenida:
AnimatedSuStenida Featured By Owner May 4, 2007  Hobbyist General Artist
:lmao:
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:iconexen:
Exen Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
W A Mozart, knew how to read notation man.
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:iconfoxwmulder:
FoxWMulder Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
I would think that's fairly obvious, but it seems that some people are pretty gullible. :o
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:iconexen:
Exen Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
That was so wrong on so many levels man.
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:iconsiriuslives0731:
siriuslives0731 Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
Perfect! Thanks for replying!!
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:iconsuperhet:
Superhet Featured By Owner May 4, 2007
He's winding you up, please oh god don't put that down.
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:iconbisento:
bisento Featured By Owner May 3, 2007
[KorektPhool] started out not knowing how to read music, though he has since learned. It was only after about 2 albums that he developed the skill, though.
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