"Lesson 2 - How to Tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning) - 5-minute Guitar Lessons"

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Download "Lesson 2 - How to Tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning) - 5-minute Guitar Lessons"

Download PDF

Fill PDF online

Rate (4.3 / 5) 27 votes
Practice Aid: Lesson 2 – How to tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning)
Lesson Overview:
This lesson discusses alternate tunings and explores a few reasons you might
want to make alternate tunings a part of your arsenal of guitar techniques. Then
it demonstrates how to tune a guitar to Open D tuning.
This practice aid will serve as a cheat sheet for how to tune the guitar to an Open
D tuning using the relative pitch harmonic method.
Why introduce alternate tunings so early?
Some of you reading this will undoubtedly wonder why I’m introducing what many
consider an advanced topic as the second lesson in my beginner guitar series.
The answer is simple. Open tunings give us a way to greatly simplify what you
do with your fret-board hand, so you can spend some time learning how to use
your picking and strumming hand. With that in mind, here’s how to tune the
guitar to Open D.
Open D Tuning
Open tunings are very useful to beginners when practicing strumming and
picking patterns because they allow you to simplify what your fret-board hand
has to do. Instead of having to think about where to put every finger, you can
play all strings open, or fret all the strings at the same fret to play any other major
chord. We’ll demonstrate this in our next lesson on strum patterns. So let’s get
your guitar tuned to Open D!
To start, we’ll assume your guitar is tuned to standard (EADGBE) tuning. See
our first lesson on standard tuning for techniques to tune it up if your guitar has
fallen out of tune.
To arrive at Open D, we’ll need to tune 4 strings down either a half step or whole
step (the pitch distance equivalent of 1 or two frets) so you get a D Major chord
when strumming the open notes. The strings will be tuned to D, A, D, F#, A and
D (6
th
string through 1
st
).
Page 1
Practice Aid: Lesson 2 – How to tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning)
Lesson Overview:
This lesson discusses alternate tunings and explores a few reasons you might
want to make alternate tunings a part of your arsenal of guitar techniques. Then
it demonstrates how to tune a guitar to Open D tuning.
This practice aid will serve as a cheat sheet for how to tune the guitar to an Open
D tuning using the relative pitch harmonic method.
Why introduce alternate tunings so early?
Some of you reading this will undoubtedly wonder why I’m introducing what many
consider an advanced topic as the second lesson in my beginner guitar series.
The answer is simple. Open tunings give us a way to greatly simplify what you
do with your fret-board hand, so you can spend some time learning how to use
your picking and strumming hand. With that in mind, here’s how to tune the
guitar to Open D.
Open D Tuning
Open tunings are very useful to beginners when practicing strumming and
picking patterns because they allow you to simplify what your fret-board hand
has to do. Instead of having to think about where to put every finger, you can
play all strings open, or fret all the strings at the same fret to play any other major
chord. We’ll demonstrate this in our next lesson on strum patterns. So let’s get
your guitar tuned to Open D!
To start, we’ll assume your guitar is tuned to standard (EADGBE) tuning. See
our first lesson on standard tuning for techniques to tune it up if your guitar has
fallen out of tune.
To arrive at Open D, we’ll need to tune 4 strings down either a half step or whole
step (the pitch distance equivalent of 1 or two frets) so you get a D Major chord
when strumming the open notes. The strings will be tuned to D, A, D, F#, A and
D (6
th
string through 1
st
).
Page 1
Practice Aid: Lesson 2 – How to tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning)
Here’s how to do it, step-by-step:
1. Tune the 6
th
string down a whole step (pitch distance of two frets) from E
to D
2. Tune the 3
rd
string down a half step (pitch distance of one fret) from G to
F#
3. Tune the 2
nd
string down a whole step from B to A
4. Tune the 1
st
string down a whole step from E to D
The following chart shows how to check the pitch on each string.
Open D Tuning – Relative Pitch Chart
D
A
D
F#
A
D
th
th
th
rd
nd
st
(6
)
(5
)
(4
)
(3
)
(2
)
(1
)
5
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
th
4
fret
Open
7
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
Extra Credit: Other Alternate Tunings:
Here are a couple other alternate tunings that can be pretty handy.
DADGAD Tuning – Relative Pitch Chart
rd
(Start with Open D tuning and raise the 3
string a half step to G).
D
A
D
G
A
D
th
th
th
rd
nd
st
(6
)
(5
)
(4
)
(3
)
(2
)
(1
)
th
5
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
th
7
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
Page 2
Practice Aid: Lesson 2 – How to tune a Guitar (Open D Tuning)
Open G Tuning
(From standard tuning, lower the 6
th
string to D. Lower the 5
th
string to G. Lower
the 1
st
string to D.)
This is the sweet spot for playing “Honky Tonk Woman.”
D
G
D
G
B
D
th
th
th
rd
nd
st
(6
)
(5
)
(4
)
(3
)
(2
)
(1
)
5
th
fret
Open
7
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
4
th
fret
Open
3
rd
fret
Open
Drop D Tuning
(Start with Standard tuning and drop the 6
th
string down to a D)
It’s not really an open tuning, but this one’s big in a lot of John Denver songs and
at least a couple rock ballads!
D
A
D
G
B
E
(6
th
)
(5
th
)
(4
th
)
(3
rd
)
(2
nd
)
(1
st
)
7
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
4
th
fret
Open
5
th
fret
Open
Lesson Link / Other Online Resources:
The video lesson can be downloaded at the following link:
http://www.5minuteguitarlessons.com/fake-any-song-open-d-tuning
Page 3
Page of 3