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tunings


Electric Biscuit

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I keep one fiddle in open G for playing slide but don't practice much on it. I played in what I like to call dadgum DADGAD which sounds great but is nowhere near as user friendly as open G so gave it up. Open tunings are really cool though.
I was born at night but I wasn't born last night...
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So you're going with Open-Dm on your Dano, eh? Twist that 3rd-string peg up a half-step and you've got Open D (Major), and as you've already noted, a half-step more and you've got DADGAD (effectively Open-Dsus4).

 

I've spent a lot of time enjoying all three of those; I even kept a guitar dedicated to Open-D, specifically set-up and strung with custom mixed-gauge sets from DR, their "Pure Blues" solid/pure nickel wound on round-core string, gauged .012", .015", .024" (wound), .028", .038", .052", D A D F# A D, low-to-high.

 

I had that guitar set-up so that I could play slide, and yet still easily enough fret the strings, as well, which lent itself to alternating between the two and also hybrid/"fretting behind the slide" techniques; I would have preferred a .022" or .023" gauge for the 3rd/"F#"-string, but the .024" was the closest they made and I really wanted that particular type, so I managed with it. :D

 

I really enjoyed being able to go to Open-Dm or DADGAD with a quick twist of one peg, and I also had three Epiphone "EZ-Bender" units on it for pedal-steel like effects, on the 2nd/"Hi-A", 3rd/"F#", and 5th/"Lo-A" strings, set for going up in pitch a whole-step, a haLf-step, and a whole-step, respectively. This was all on a Gibson Les Paul Gem/Studio with P-90 "soapbars"; what a rockin' guitar that was!

 

Open-E is the same relative tuning, just up a whole-step across the 'board: E B E G# B E, lo-to-hi...

 

 

I've also used Open-G and Open-A (D G D G B D and E A E A C# E, respectively, lo-to-hi);

 

the Curtis Mayfield "black piano keys" tuning, F# A# C# F# A# F#, lo-to-hi;

 

and some of the tunings used by Jimmy Page, such as D G C G C D, lo-to-hi, for "The Rain Song", and C A C G C E, lo-to-hi for the instrumental "Bron-Yr-Aur" on Physical Graffiti.

 

I made up a number of little instrumental ditties in these and who knows what other tunings years ago, and managed to forget some and/or get mixed up on what tuning went with what song! Take a lesson- document! Keep lists and records and recordings!

 

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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I play slide in open "G" for the most part, it's a compatible key for me to sing in.

I've never been one to use alternative tunings much; never had the ear for it and by the time reliable electronic tuners came along it was too late....

 

Watched a Crosby, Stills, and Young concert once and it seemed that Stills used a different guitar in a different tuning for almost each number.

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I tried Drop D for a day- I may come back to it- but the only nonstandard tuning I use regularly is Robert Fripp's New Standard Tuning: C G D A E G.

 

I was drawn to it immediately for 2 reasons. First, I'm a big fan of Fripp's work. Second, my first instrument (after voice) was the cello, which is tuned C G D A, so the transition was relatively easy. Once tuned to NST, I was able to dust off some symphonic pieces I hadn't tried in years...

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I experiment with a bunch of them, since it's so easy to do with a VG-99, virtually.

 

But what I often use for slide:

Open G or Open A for slide

 

For synthy sounds:

EAdgbe, where EA are -1 octave below std.

EAdgBE, which is similar except top 2 strings are +1 octave.

I sometimes set up a pedal to move the D string's tuning back and forth from octave to normal.

 

I love toying with all 5ths tunings but, dang, those notes get pretty far apart, 'specially for my small hands. I set up a Mellotrons-ish cellos patch so I could play 10538 Overture, but I can't recall exactly what the tuning was, just that it's mostly 5ths but the top strings are not all in 5ths....

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I experiment with a bunch of them, since it's so easy to do with a VG-99, virtually.

 

But what I often use for slide:

Open G or Open A for slide

 

For synthy sounds:

EAdgbe, where EA are -1 octave below std.

EAdgBE, which is similar except top 2 strings are +1 octave.

I sometimes set up a pedal to move the D string's tuning back and forth from octave to normal.

 

I love toying with all 5ths tunings but, dang, those notes get pretty far apart, 'specially for my small hands. I set up a Mellotrons-ish cellos patch so I could play 10538 Overture, but I can't recall exactly what the tuning was, just that it's mostly 5ths but the top strings are not all in 5ths....

 

That's cool, that you can use the digital-modeling technology to do virtual tunings that would be difficult or even impossible with real strings actually being tuned to those pitches- such as "EAdgBE...top 2 strings are +1 octave", which would break any commonly available, conventional strings.

 

Getting a Mellotron-like sound must be exceedingly cool, too! :thu::cool:

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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I was experimenting with them for a while but didn`t stick with it. I came up with one that is basically just the 2nd and 4th strings dropped a whole

step-E-A-C-G-A-E. I wrote a little tune called, naturally, Drop but I rarely play it. I also came up with a couple of riffs that I recorded, then later I figured out how to play one of them in standard. Have to get that one down with better sound sometime soon.

Korg had a pedal some years ago, called the DT-1. You could create tunings and store them. I thought that would have been a lot more popular but it kind of disappeared.

Same old surprises, brand new cliches-

 

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I couldn't agree more. I have tried out many alternate tunings & they are great to experiment with......the problem is that they are generally too restricting. After half an hour or so I invariably return to my favourite tuning E A D G B E. It feels so good to have so many chordal variations at my disposal.
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I couldn't agree more. I have tried out many alternate tunings & they are great to experiment with......the problem is that they are generally too restricting. After half an hour or so I invariably return to my favourite tuning E A D G B E. It feels so good to have so many chordal variations at my disposal.

 

Thanks Tony, Standard tuning makes me appreciate the whole layout of the guitar, drop tuning doesn't really change anything as long as you're playing solo...but I get lost on altered tunings when it comes to the scales, chords, etc...capos cause me to lose frets for scale work and/or lower register sounds...but that's just me...I also appreciate the great sounds that come from others using the altered concepts... :thu:

Take care, Larryz
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