How to tune a guitar for beginners


                                Standard Tuning:     E  A  D  G  B  E

    This lesson is to tune your guitar by ear to itself.  It is best to tune at least your reference string with a tuner so you will be

in the right pitch to play with other instruments; and also for uniformity with voice range.

Battery operated tuners can be bought at a local guitar shop or online for a reasonable price. Some clip onto your headstock. I use one that is Connected by a cable to my acoustic guitar that has a battery operated sound pickup.
It also has a chord finder, which I use to find chords I’m not familiar with.     OK so let’s tune my guitar.

The Tuning Process

1 Put your finger on the 5th fret of the 6th string and tune the open 5th string (A) to the same pitch.
Note: when it is in tune there will be no wavering of the sound.

2. Then do the same process with your finger on the 5th fret of the 5th string and tune the open 4th string (D).

3. Repeat the same process,5th fret,4th string to the open 3rd string (G).
cartoon-picture-of- a-boy-and-guitar

4.This time, we go to the 4th fret of the 3rd string to tune the open 2nd string (B).

Note: That is the only time in tuning by ear that you use a fret other than the 5th fret.

5. Now we go to the 5th fret of the 2nd string and tune the 1st string (E).

Your guitar should be in tune. Strum it, play it. and tweak it a little if something sounds a little off.

Open D tuning:   D  A  D  G flat  A  D

I want to briefly talk on this topic because it meant a lot to me as I learned guitar and I still use it a lot.

If you compare the notes of the open strings to standard tuning you will see that outside (E) strings are lowered 1 step to (D).

The (A) and (D) remain the same. The (G) is lowered 1/2 step to (G) flat and the (B) is lowered 1 step to (A).

Lowering all the strings reduces tension on the neck of your guitar. When you tune your guitar into a full chord all the frets are full chords

Up the neck and at the 12th fret you are back to (D) again.

Ritchie Havens, a great vocalist with a long thumb, accompanied his vocals with straight chords using   open tuning.

You can do a lot of 2 finger chords in open tuning and it is used by slide players. I will talk about slide latter down the road.

I hope this has helped. Please leave comments, questions, and email for replies. This way I know what you want and need.

I can then adjust my topics to what you want to learn. If I don’t know I will find out or let you know where to find an answer.

There is a video on my “How to Learn Guitar ” page. Jam Play offers many free lessons but also more in-depth paid subscriptions.

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