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Oct 30, 2020 - 3:37:52 AM
8 posts since 10/29/2020

hi all,

Dumb question alert!

I've been learning banjo (Scrugg's Style) for around 6 months and have always used standard gDGBD.

I have recently fallen in love with the mountain styles and 2 Finger Thumb Lead styles and am looking to start learning songs.

This is going to sound incredibly naive but please could someone explain how I would change the tuning to aDADD so that I end up with gCGCC by using a capo at fret 2.

Do all the strings get tuned UP from standard tuning? Or would there be down tuning involved in this?

Thank you

Oct 30, 2020 - 4:03:27 AM
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3020 posts since 4/29/2012

I'm a bit confused. If you start at aDADD and capo UP you'll get bEBEE (assuming you also tune the 5th up - but it would probably break, or put it on a 7th fret spike) !

But if you want gCGCC then you start in standard gDGBD and tune the 4th down a tone (2 steps) steps, the second up a semitone (1 step) and the 1st down 2 steps. If you then capo at 2 (and raise the 5th 2 steps or put it in a 7th fret spike) you'll get aDADD.

What's the tune ?

Oct 30, 2020 - 4:14 AM

8 posts since 10/29/2020

Thanks Andrew,

I'm wanted to learn a version of "Wild Bill Jones". The tab says: aDADD tuning (gCGCC capo 2).

I think I just got my description the wrong way around then - oops! I would need to tune to gCGCC first, then cappo to achieve aDADD .


Edited by - woodpekkerfrommars on 10/30/2020 04:14:44

Oct 30, 2020 - 4:43:58 AM
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40797 posts since 3/7/2006

 aDADD tuning (gCGCC capo 2) means that you first tune your banjo to gCGCC and put a capo on second fret, and have spike or fifth string capo on the 7th fret (two frets above the ordinary fifth string - or you can tune the fifth string up to an A without problem.

And while you are in aDADD tuning, don't miss to play the triple C (or triple D) thumb lead  version of Darling Cora.

Oct 30, 2020 - 7:45:06 AM

8 posts since 10/29/2020

Thanks guys - that's great.

Oct 30, 2020 - 9:11:45 AM

527 posts since 2/15/2015

It's not absolutely necessary to spike a neck, nor do you have to drill into the side of a neck to attach a rail. Banjo Ben has this


Affix it to the re-entrant g-string and it works pretty good. I've been using one for a while now.

The other option is a ramp that looks like a sawed-off end of a clothes pin with a notch and they sure look pretty but I've never tried one. They are usually made out of a hardwood such as ebony & slide up underneath string .

Oct 30, 2020 - 10:11:04 PM

1027 posts since 1/9/2012

The biggest (only?) downside of the Strum Hollow (nee Reagan) 5th string capo is losing it when it's not in use.  If I'm taking it on and off, I keep it on one of the strings by the tuners above the nut when it's not in use.

Another great tune for triple-C tuning is Bonaparte's Retreat, the Will Stepp version, immortalized by Aaron Copland and the Beef, It's What's for Dinner commercials.  My all-time favorite is

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