guitarmageddon0
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2007
4,234 IQ
#1
I'm having a bit of trouble singing some of the songs that my band wrote in their original key. I only need the songs tuned down a half step but it seems like the songs sound odd tuned down a half step, but not when they are tuned down a whole step.

Is this commonly the case with tuning down? Does it frequently sound more natural to transpose songs by a whole step than a half step?
Drapte
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2008
1,474 IQ
#2
Quote by guitarmageddon0
I'm having a bit of trouble singing some of the songs that my band wrote in their original key. I only need the songs tuned down a half step but it seems like the songs sound odd tuned down a half step, but not when they are tuned down a whole step.

Is this commonly the case with tuning down? Does it frequently sound more natural to transpose songs by a whole step than a half step?



It depends, but it's not a general rule of thumb, no.
0
1
Beer.
Registered User
Join date: Apr 2014
26 IQ
#3
Sometimes when you tune down or up and play songs that are written in a different tuning they really lose "it". You should either basically write the songs in an lower or higher tuning if you are only able to sing it like that or you just accept that they dont sound the same anymore and play them on another tuning.
Cajundaddy
60s throwback
Join date: Feb 2014
32 IQ
#4
I prefer most everything down 1/2 on guitar. Jimi, SRV, and EVH had a clue.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis
crazysam23_Atax
Feuergesicht
Join date: Oct 2009
5,700 IQ
#5
Quote by guitarmageddon0
I'm having a bit of trouble singing some of the songs that my band wrote in their original key. I only need the songs tuned down a half step but it seems like the songs sound odd tuned down a half step, but not when they are tuned down a whole step.

Is this commonly the case with tuning down? Does it frequently sound more natural to transpose songs by a whole step than a half step?

Typically, a song sounds best in the tuning it was written in. It may be easier to sing if you transpose a song, but it may sound as good.
Dave_Mc
Chirp and Swirl
Join date: Mar 2005
2,967 IQ
#6
^ Yeah. Though I would also suspect an awful lot of songs written on guitar are written in that specific key because it's easy to play at that position, rather than because it sounds good there (Though admittedly the fact the guitar is tuned the way it is suggests that the "easier" keys probably do sound good already.)
Quote by classicrocker01
Only on UG would I say I got engaged and bought a jet city and get congratulated on the amp


slap-a-bass
Slapper of the bass
Join date: Oct 2007
1,032 IQ
#7
your ears just need to get used to it. listen to the song a few times in the tuning you want to play it in, half or whole step down and once youve gotten used to it, it will sound more natural, and the audience will not notice a single thing (unless of course you're not properly tuned with each other and yourselves)
The4thHorsemen
?
Join date: Feb 2007
2,541 IQ
#8
Something else that could have an effect on this is the intonation. If your guitar is set up to play in standard and you drop the tuning without changing the saddle positions the notes higher up the fretboard will be slightly out of tune. Of course, a half or whole step distance usually doesn't have a very noticeable effect, but this can have a larger effect on some guitars. So, I'd say you should try that and see if it makes much difference.

If you don't know, to set your intonation you basically just move the saddles closer or farther away to make sure the 12th fret is perfectly in tune. http://www.projectguitar.com/articles.html/_/tutorials/instrument-setup/solidbody-setup-v-adjusting-intonation-r43
crazysam23_Atax
Feuergesicht
Join date: Oct 2009
5,700 IQ
#9
Quote by Dave_Mc
^ Yeah. Though I would also suspect an awful lot of songs written on guitar are written in that specific key because it's easy to play at that position, rather than because it sounds good there

True...but still.
Dave_Mc
Chirp and Swirl
Join date: Mar 2005
2,967 IQ
#10
^ Agreed. I was just pointing it out (and the bit I wrote after that meant I pretty much agreed with you).
Quote by classicrocker01
Only on UG would I say I got engaged and bought a jet city and get congratulated on the amp


Dave_Mc
Chirp and Swirl
Join date: Mar 2005
2,967 IQ
#12
Quote by classicrocker01
Only on UG would I say I got engaged and bought a jet city and get congratulated on the amp