Tag Archive for: Guitar Tunings

Tuning for sound

– What some of the great guitarists have done.

Albert King one the early great blues guitarists often used dropped open tunings and also tuned as much as a tone and a half lower than Standard E. He used light gauge strings the lighter-gauge strings were a factor in King’s string-bending technique (0.009″, 0.012″, 0.024″ wound, 0.028″, 0.038″, 0.050″). Albert King was left-handed and played right-handed guitars upside down – pulling strings down rather than bending strings up. Below are some of the tunings he is reported to have used.

Low to High
C# G# B E G# C#
C B E G B E (open E minor – with low C)
C F C F A D (open F)
C B E F# B E

Robert Johnson, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan & Slash are known to have tuned to Standard E Flat to get a richer bluesy sound. This is actually a very popular tuning to use… see more examples

Low to High
Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb

Dave Gilmour, Pink Floyd, has also used some open & alternate tunings notably open G in Fearless and open E minor in One of these days.

Low to High
E B E G B E (open E minor)
G G D G B B (open G)
D G C F A D (tuned down one whole step)

Jimmy Page, Led Zeplin, used a number of alternate tunings such as DADGAD, for example, which was used in Kashmir and DGCGCD in the Rain Song.

Low to High

Kieth Richards is known to have favoured Open G (with the low string removed) for songs like Honky Tonk Woman, Brown Sugar and Start me up.

Low to high

Explore guitar tunings

Below we have some pages that list out a wide range of guitar tunings

Guitar tunings

There is no limit to the amount of tuning variations that can be made, we’ve listed an amount of some of the more regular ones. You can even have a go at making you own.

All tunings

To see a listing of guitar tunings to make comparisons continue to – All Tunings

Circle of Notes

The circle of notes technique can help to find chords and scales in any given tuning. It helps to find the interval relationship between chords and scales by giving the order of notes on the fretboard of a guitar. This order will stay consistent with the position on the fretboard may move depending on the tuning. To find notes for a chord or scale in a particular tuning, have a look at the – Circle of Notes