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 Playing Advice: 4-String (Jazz, Blues & Other Trad Styles)
 ARCHIVED TOPIC: Tuning a plectrum to GDAE


Please note this is an archived topic, so it is locked and unable to be replied to. You may, however, start a new topic and refer to this topic with a link: http://www.banjohangout.org/archive/152141

LeeM - Posted - 07/06/2009:  12:28:28


Hello there ive been playing irish tenor for about a year or so now ( Goldtone Criple Creek Tenor) i want to know if it is possible to tune a plectrum banjo to GDAE. how would this affect sound and playability.

i want to get a plectrum banjo instead of a tenor beacuse i feel id benifit from the longer scale.

also is a 5 string banjo generally the same scale length as a plectrum banjo?

thank you.

"Just doing my thing"

NYCJazz - Posted - 07/06/2009:  13:17:58


Lee

Plectrum is the same scale as 5-string. Standard tuning for plectrum (CGDA) is almost the same as modern 5-string tuning (gDGBD).

Tuning plectrum GDAE is fairly common. You should have no trouble at all. The longer scale should sound great.




Nathan



Jazz makes an art of vulgarity; is monotonous; pornographic, and often outrageously funny; and is replete with intellectual and cultural pretensions.

-Ernest Bacon


diarmaid - Posted - 07/06/2009:  13:27:13


Lee they sound brilliant tuned down, make sure to put heavy gauge strings on like a set of octave mandolin strings will be about the right length and thickness. I used to get to have a go on an epiphone recording dragon plectrum tune gdae pretty often when i was wee, it sounded absolutely outstanding, the stretch was a wee bit tough for me though but the sound was well worth it.

Klondike Waldo - Posted - 07/06/2009:  13:33:01


quote:
Originally posted by NYCJazz

Lee

Plectrum is the same scale as 5-string. Standard tuning for plectrum (CGDA) is almost the same as modern 5-string tuning (gDGBD).

Tuning plectrum GDAE is fairly common. You should have no trouble at all. The longer scale should sound great.




Nathan



Jazz makes an art of vulgarity; is monotonous; pornographic, and often outrageously funny; and is replete with intellectual and cultural pretensions.

-Ernest Bacon






Nate, do you really tune you plectrum CGDA, or did you mean CGBD and had a tenorial slip?

I''ll never play like Earl Scruggs or sing like Luciano Pavarotti, but I''ll pick better than Luciano and sing tenor better than Earl
deligo ergo renideo,
Bob Cameron

NYCJazz - Posted - 07/06/2009:  17:38:44


Oops!

Old habits die hard! I spent too many years playing tenor!

Plectrum is indeed CGBD!




Nathan



Jazz makes an art of vulgarity; is monotonous; pornographic, and often outrageously funny; and is replete with intellectual and cultural pretensions.

-Ernest Bacon


rob sharer - Posted - 07/07/2009:  07:12:31


GDAE will indeed work on a plectrum, but if you happen to wish to play Irish traditional music on your plectrum, you may find that the high B is a bit too far up there for a comfortable reach (unless your hands are way bigger than mine). What I do with my banjo, a Framus plectrum that is my only 4-string at the moment, is to tune it E-B-F#-C# and place a capo at the 3rd fret. This gives me GDAE with 19 frets to the pot, which feels just great for the reels. As an added bonus, when I meet someone with pipes or a flute in C#, C, or B, I only have to move the capo down to be right where I need to be. Cheers,

Rob

chrisblack - Posted - 07/08/2009:  05:58:02


I tuned my plecrum to GDAE for years (till i got a tenor neck) - the hi B was a nightmare for irish trad, so I also capoed up..

Chris

"There''s always one listening" - Gerry O''Gorman, Bacup (RIP)

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