20 Min­utes To… Learn al­tered tun­ings

Get to grips with four cre­ative ways to re-tune your gui­tar with TG’S whis­tle-stop tour of al­tered tun­ings

Total Guitar - - CONTENTS -

As the first tun­ing you learn when you start play­ing the gui­tar, ‘stan­dard’ EADGBE tun­ing should be fa­mil­iar to most gui­tarists. Any change to these notes is known as an al­tered or al­ter­nate tun­ing. There are sim­ply dozens of dif­fer­ent tun­ings to try out, all used pri­mar­ily as a way to reimag­ine the fret­board and in­tro­duce new sounds and a new way of play­ing gui­tar. In many tun­ings the notes on the fret­board will seem un­fa­mil­iar but what’s re­ally fan­tas­tic about dif­fer­ent tun­ings is that you can of­ten find new and ex­cit­ing shapes and sounds purely by ac­ci­dent. Gui­tarists such as Keith Richards, Kim Thayil and Derek Trucks, amongst many oth­ers, use al­tered tun­ings to cre­ate their unique voice and iden­tity on the gui­tar.

Your only real con­cern when us­ing a dif­fer­ent tun­ing is en­sur­ing that your gui­tar is set up to man­age the al­tered string ten­sion eas­ily. Vi­brato sys­tems will make re-tun­ing re­ally dif­fi­cult, so a gui­tar with a fixed bridge is the best op­tion while you ex­per­i­ment.

whaty­ouwill­learn How to use four of the most im­por­tant al­ter­nate tun­ings Loads of new chord shapes How to use open E tun­ing for slide gui­tar

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