I played acoustic guitar for many years before I took up squareneck. Any slide I played in the past was in open E so it has been impossible for me to play lap style and not be constantly counting 3 frets up (or back) for a reference point. How do you shake that?
Edited by - FrederickPatterson on 05/31/2023 06:53:09
Keep playing in E....unless you're playing bluegrass; non-high bass G just doesn't sound right...unless you're Shot Jackson. Wasn't his dobro in E for those George Jones LPs?
Yes... Shot told me that the E tuning was used when he had both the six and seven string guitars in his career.
Cool, thanks for confirming. And for confirming that my memory is not entirely faulty.
I play in open G and standard EADGBE too. Maybe I should have posed this more as the question of do you block out other tunings or think of them in relation to each other? And how do you do that?
Most tunings have a 135 sequence somewhere (even EADGBE, though it's 513). I start with that. e.g.- High bass G = 135135, E = 151351, C6 = 135613, B11 = 135724......
I’m no expert, but I do play in multiple tunings (with different string-to-string interval relationships). While playing at tempo, I never had much luck trying to relate tunings to each other in the heat of battle.
Instead, I learned different scale patterns, go-to-licks etc. in each different tuning and think of them as different animals.
I orient myself in the Nashville Numbering system. Instead of thinking of actual chord names (G, C, D…), I think of them as chord numbers (I, IV, V…) and work on ear training to recognize chord transitions. It helps when your band mates or jam buddies communicate in the same way, calling out a change “to the four chord” instead of an actual chord. When folks don’t do this, it can require some very quick mental gymnastics.
There are, of course, ways to translate from one tuning to the other (Open D to High Bass G or whatever), but thinking this quickly while improvising a solo at 140 bpm never worked for me….lol. So personally, I just block out the other tunings while immersed in the one at hand.
Many thanks for this post !
The Nashville number system has been used for many years and is a very important tool for reso players to learn. Mental gymnastics...yes but any time you can use your brain muscles will be time very well spent. There are books and articles on this...maybe even on this forum... for you to get started on this journey.
The Nashville number system is important for all players.
"Key of D, 1-4-5" is a LOT easier than "Key of D, capo 2 so C-F-G, but you all without capos...um.... (hint-it's D-G-A), you there with the capo 5? um...hmm...". (I was just at one of these Sunday afternoon. sigh.)
Yeah . ran into that a few times with a particular group of people I occasionally played at . Even had handouts with various Christmas or whatever songs with chords .
But they were guitar centric , with things like " Key of C , Capo up 3 " or whatever . I said to hostess ( honcho ) to the effect of " why don't you just either use the real chords , or just use Nashville Numbers ? " .
Heck . since I just brought it up . I ought to see if they ever started up again after the Zombie Apocalypse .
Originally posted by FrederickPatterson. . . How do you shake that?
A nice starting place: With standard GBDGBD squareneck tuning, the second, third, and fourth strings are the same as a flattop guitar in standard (and open G) tuning. So you can use those three strings as easy reference points.
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