Does anyone understand how you tune your guitar to all the different tunings on certain songs. For example on John Denver's Rocky Mountain High, it says Dropped D tuning DADGBe? how do you do this, do you have 2 guitars with 1 with the original tuning and for example, on the first string you drop down to the D note from the original E open high which would sound like the 3rd fret of the next lower string? Or do you have to buy a fancy electronic tuner with preset tunings, that have all possible tunings for you.
Also this is my first post so I'm not sure if I'm able to see the reply, please bear with me.
Yours truly
Last edited by gasper at Feb 16, 2008,
the get to the drop D just downtune the low string until its an octave under your D string (or if you want to be fancy, so that 12th fret natural harmonic on the 1st string is the same as the open string)

to get back match it with the other E string
Hold the 7th fret of the E string, and make it sound the same as the A string.....that's as simple as it gets.
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Quote by seljer
the get to the drop D just downtune the low string until its an octave under your D string (or if you want to be fancy, so that 12th fret natural harmonic on the 1st string is the same as the open string)

to get back match it with the other E string

this is what i do. well actually i pluck my middle D then tune my E down until the 2 match/rhyme. btw this prolly belongs in guitar basics so if it gets closed don't be real surprised.
I'm sorry but I feel like someone who is just starting to learn how to play guitar.
Seljer I'm sorry but I don't get it.
If I drop the low E string an octive isn't that 12 notes lower?
Also Flesh Fries you said hold the E string at the 7th fret (that is the High E string correct)?
But what about the rest of the strings how do I get this guitar retuned to this Dropped D?
since standard tuning (what your using now) is EADGBe to tune to Drop D (DADGBe) all that is needed is to tune your low E down one whole step to D. You can use a tuner if your unsure but you can also do the 7th fret trick as mentioned before by Flesh Fries.
^ you just tune the low E down to D, its not an octave its one step/2 semitones (same thing)
Oh now I get it, boy do I feel dumb. Its just one string that gets changed 2 notes lower. the low e string right
What about other songs, like for example Led Zeppelin's Rain Song.
It says All Guitars Tuned low to high DGCGCD? are these tuned up to these notes or down to these notes. and how do you know which way to go? How can you find these notes when your guitar starts changing its tuning
boredom an 3 minutes results in a howto video

1) tune the B string one halfstep up (match it at the 5th fret of the previous string instead of at the 4th as you'd usually do)
2) do the drop D thing
3) starting from your now low D, match up at the 5th fret to turn the A into G
4) ditto for the next string
5) match the high E with your new low D in octaves
or at least thats how I'd do it, might be a bit finnicky to get everything perfect in the end

or just get yourself a chromatic tuner, the Korg one is like $15 and is a very handy little thing
Thanks so much seljer and the rest of you guys that last reply will keep me busy for a while. I appreciate it very much, I sure would like to know how you know how to interpret these tunings. The second string is tuned up then the low E is tuned down oh man. Its getting a bit complicated but I'll be busy all night with this one. But your right eventually I'll just buy a chromatic tuner. But is there somewhere that teaches this kind of stuff?
I'm sorry selger I didn't realize you had a video on how to do the drop D. That is so cool but I have slow speed internet access, 56k dial-up so to watch a 2 minute video will probably take all day (exaggerating) to download or watch, but it is well worth it. Do you or anyone also have one for Led Zeppelin - The Rain Song? I have no idea what the tuning is called if it has a name at all. What I would like to know is were do people come up with these different tunings, I have a hard enough time just keeping my guitar in regular tuning LOL. Because it changes everything, like some chords are now in different finger positions and doesn't it change the names of the chords too? I guess you can tell I'm really new at this and need to understand it. Because even if I buy the tuner how will I know which way to tune the notes up or down. I remember a while ago when I first tried to do this I broke a string trying to get it up to the note I was trying to reach, I guess I went up when I should of went down.
wow thanks DarThie it really is all there. I'll have to have alot of time on my hands to look and study this, but wow its all there.
Are there any more youtubes showing you some of these tunings? Sorry I'm lazy I guess