GITI – Electric guitar music text format

NOTE HXA7241 2013-01-27T11:24Z

GITI is a new music text notation for electric guitar: a bit like a specialised kind of abc (another non-traditional notation)

Traditional music notation is very general and powerful, but rather complex and eccentric and requiring special tools. Guitar tabs are easy to read, but a little awkward to write and for software to read, and are missing time information.

Alternative music notations like abc and guido seem a good kind of approach: straightforward and text-based. They are more digitally-oriented than traditional notation and tabs.

GITI is somewhat like abc but specialised for guitar, or like tabs but without the quasi-graphical form: easy to read and write for both human and software, and including plenty of musical information.

As a short introduction, GITI breaks down into a sequence of space-separated tokens – ‘sounds’, and they break into three colon-separated parts – ‘act’, ‘pitch’, and ‘time’.

For example: pluck : string 2, fret 4, vibrato : 1 quarter-note:


Or more complex, a doubled-bend, then slide:

p:414+2=512:4e  s:414/:*

A whole riff – Black Sabbath ‘Black Sabbath’:

@giti:e-2  @tuning:std  @tempo:4:3.603
| 13=25:2 . 35:* | 24r1:2_4_8e  s:24/:8s |

There you can begin to see: the act part is optional, chords are ‘=’-separated pitches, parts the same as the previous sound are notated with ‘*’, times are extendable with ‘_’, and bars and segments are optionally showable with ‘|’ and ‘.’.

The full description/specification is: