Tablature is a form of musical notation indicating instrument fingering rather than musical pitches. Tablature is common for fretted stringed instruments such as the lute, vihuela, or guitar, as well as many free reed aerophones such as the harmonica. Tablature was common during the Renaissance and Baroque eras, and is commonly used in notating rock, pop, folk, ragtime, bluegrass, and blues music. Three types of organ tablature were used in Europe: German, Spanish and Italian. There are several types of ocarina tabulature. Harp tablature was used in Spain and Wales. To distinguish standard musical notation from tablature, the former is usually called 'staff notation' or just 'notation'. An alternate usage of the word 'tab' is common on the Internet, where it can also refer to conventional chord symbols (for harmony), or note names (for melody).
Contributions by Bfinn, Randywombat, and Da Vynci.