Braille Music Page
This page has a very brief summary of braille music. Hopefully it will be enough to get you started.
This page is designed to be used by sighted people who probably do not have a specialized font installed to show braille characters. The braille signs are shown as graphics files which can be viewed by any standard internet browser.
For the benefit of visually impaired users, the page is also available in two common braille formats:
(Thanks to Sarah Galbraith for making the braille versions of the files.)
Brief summary of the most common braille music signs
Books to get you started
The best book is Primer of Braille Music by Edward W. Jenkins. It covers most everything (although in a rather
brief and sometimes cryptic form) and has many examples, written out in both braille notation and print.
Introductory books such as the Primer, as well as most music in the standard repertoire, is available from the
Library of Congress. The Library of Congress lends the braille music books to qualified individuals free of charge.
Introductory materials are also available in print form so that a sighted person (such as the a teacher or tutor) can help in
learning the braille system.
Braille Music FAQ
Introduction to Braille and American Sign Language
The National Library Service for the Blind and Handicapped at the Library of
Congress. Of particular interest there are the files related to the music
Music Instruction Software Page.
Are you interested in learning more?
I have started an internet email list for braille music called BrailleM. It is be very useful for beginning music braillers, who can
ask more experienced users for information and advice. It is also be helpful for more advanced users, who can
ask about a particularly knotty passages or formats. The list is helpful in locating sources for braille
music and braille music teaching/learning materials, brailles music transcription, and so on.
Click here for instructions for joining the BrailleM email list.
Online Braille Music Course
The Shodor Education Foundation, with funding from the US Department of Education, has developed an online braille music course. The course is free or very inexpensive (depending on whether or not you wish to have personalized responses from an online teacher). You can visit the online course at
http://www.brl.org/. Look for the link entitled "Specialized braille codes".
The author of this page is Brent Hugh (brent @ brenthugh.com). Feel free to email him with any questions about,
problems with, complaints regarding, or--especially--suggestions for the page. He especially appreciates it if you send
him a quick note (no need to chit-chat or spend extra time being polite) about any problems with the page (dead links, etc.).
All contents of this page are released by the author(s) into the public domain and your are welcome to copy, publish, or adapt them as you wish.