twdavis13
Registered User
Join date: Oct 2009
954 IQ
#1
So exactly how did Nirvana tune their bass and guitar??
TechnoLp
Six String Slinger
Join date: Mar 2009
45 IQ
#3
try somewhere between stardard and a halfstep down. They were grunge musicians they were always a little out of tune.
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Chromex
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2008
496 IQ
#4
Usually standard, but sometimes Drop D or a half step down, or Drop D while a half step down.
twdavis13
Registered User
Join date: Oct 2009
954 IQ
#5
So it was kind of a hit or miss thing, there was no pattern??

I.e: E standard on one album or Drop D on another?? Oh well. I'll figure it out! Thanks!!
Chromex
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2008
496 IQ
#6
Quote by twdavis13
So it was kind of a hit or miss thing, there was no pattern??

I.e: E standard on one album or Drop D on another?? Oh well. I'll figure it out! Thanks!!


On In Utero, everything is a half step down, on the earlier albums it's mostly standard.
z4twenny
UG's resident Psychopath
Join date: Nov 2005
936 IQ
#7
in all actuality, it kinda depends on the song. its split between standard, half step flat, drop d and i think something in the way is somewhere between drop C# and D (it wasn't in perfect tuning, they had to have everyone else tune to the guitar)
DaddyTwoFoot
Barned
Join date: Oct 2004
338 IQ
#8
They used many different tunings.
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Declan87
Bainne
Join date: Apr 2007
690 IQ
#9
yea they had lotsa different tunings, but live they would generally play the whole set in one tuning(excluding drop d songs) Blew is in C Standard for example, I believe.
Von II
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
687 IQ
#11
They used Drop C on Something In The Way too, since Kurt didn't tune his guitar at all for that recording and all the other members had to detune to whatever Kurt recorded the song in... or something along those lines.
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nirvananerd1997
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2012
21 IQ
#13
he did change tunings but what did he change from and what did he change to
t1mman
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2011
411 IQ
#14
Looks like someone changing a broken sting or fooling around for a clip to me...
seljer
UG Resident
Join date: Apr 2005
1,381 IQ
#15
Quote by Mathedes
At 2:50 we can clearly see Cobain changes tunings in the middle of "Smells Like Teen Spirit."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTWKbfoikeg


I don't think thats changing tunings as much as just temporarily detuning a string for a specific effect, like a reverse bend.
AlanHB
Godin's Resident Groupie
Join date: Aug 2008
1,703 IQ
#17
Quote by nirvananerd1997
Still what was his original tuning for smells like teen spirit


E standard. You're not much of a Nirvana nerd are you.


And this:

Quote by Someone above
At 2:50 we can clearly see Cobain changes tunings in the middle of "Smells Like Teen Spirit."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTWKbfoikeg


Actually made me laugh out loud. Congratulations.
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Sean0913
Music Theory Life-Hacker
Join date: Dec 2009
813 IQ
#18
E Standard, however sometimes studios have been known to play with their calibration. So it's off slightly. Like instead of A=440 they might do A=442.

Don't make the mistake for a moment that it was all random and haphazard and the like. They were serious musicians and knew what they were doing. The person that said they were grunge musicians and always a bit out of tune, oversimplified things. In truth these guys were very specific, and used that slight out of tuneness for effect, not because they were sloppy. They were all business when it came to their music. Many might be shocked to hear that.

Best,

Sean
rocknrollstar
Debaser
Join date: Feb 2006
1,159 IQ
#20
I've seen the following tunings used by Nirvana:


EADGBE
EbAbDbGbBbEb
DGCFAD
DbGbBEAbDb
DADGBE
DbAbDbGbBbEb


I have a couple of books laying around. There's is probably more, but it's essentially Drop D with variations (1/2 step down, whole step down etc) and there could be more. If you want a mind****, check out the tunings used by Sonic Youth.


Also some things to note about Nirvana:

-the unplugged album has distortion on the acoustic guitar, so it's not technically "pure" acoustic, so if your trying to emulate that tone then that's something to consider.
-a few songs have similar chord progressions and rhythms, but their timbre may be different (Rape Me and Smells Like Teen Spirit are similar, also similar rhythmic patterns in About A Girl if you listen for it) so look for characteristics.


Different tunings, different songs. I wouldn't stress too much, I'm sure the tabs on this website will be accurate and if you search Youtube for a tutorial on how to achieve this tunings then you will be sorted. Hope this helps.