Friday, March 1, 2013
Alternate Ukulele Tunings
This is the "standard" tuning that you are probably playing in. G, C, E, A
This tuning was once more popular than standard C. Everything is raised an entire step. A, D, F#, B. This is a good one to playing around with...especially if you're playing a piece of music that contains that pesky E chord (see my blog post about E chord alternatives here). Click here for another blog with a basic chord chart for this tuning.
Low G tuning
This style of tuning is becoming more and more popular amongst players. It takes the idea of standard C tuning, but drops the G an octave from a high G to a low G. G, C, E, A. Comes in really handy if you are playing a piece that needs those extra low notes or if you are simply looking for a bigger sound. To tune to this, you need an actual set of strings with a low G like these Aquilas.
Slack Key tuning
Mostly used in slack key playing, but can be very useful in a lot situations. The idea is based off the re-entrant C-tuning, with the high A being tuned down to match your high G. G, C, E, G.
If you strum the strings with this tuning you'll be playing a C chord.....moving up the fretboard and barring all strings on each fret, you'll be playing the next major chord (1st fret barred = C# major, 2nd fret barred = D major, etc.).
Slide Ukulele tuning
For those of you that are launching into the brave new world of slide ukulele, might I suggest a G, C, E, Bb tuning. This creates a C7 chord when strummed open and makes for some very fun and bluesy slide ukulele playing.
Click here for a post with a basic chord chart for this tuning!
That should be enough to get you started....but if you're thirsty for more, check out this post by Ukulele Hunt and this article on The Jumping Flea.