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Banjo Tunings

selby 03 Jul 14 - 10:40 AM
Les in Chorlton 03 Jul 14 - 10:49 AM
GUEST,gillymor 03 Jul 14 - 11:05 AM
The Sandman 03 Jul 14 - 11:56 AM
Mark Ross 03 Jul 14 - 01:26 PM
PHJim 03 Jul 14 - 04:06 PM
MGM·Lion 03 Jul 14 - 04:12 PM
selby 03 Jul 14 - 04:22 PM
Mark Ross 03 Jul 14 - 04:49 PM
MGM·Lion 03 Jul 14 - 05:07 PM
PHJim 03 Jul 14 - 10:40 PM
The Sandman 04 Jul 14 - 03:52 AM
The Sandman 04 Jul 14 - 10:50 AM
MGM·Lion 04 Jul 14 - 02:49 PM
PHJim 04 Jul 14 - 05:08 PM
PHJim 04 Jul 14 - 11:30 PM
PHJim 04 Jul 14 - 11:31 PM
GUEST,Mike Turner 05 Jul 14 - 10:53 AM
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Subject: Banjo Tunings
From: selby
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 10:40 AM

I do not understand the ways of Banjos at all, a friend of mine is trying to get a certain sound out of a 5 string banjo. Looking around the net to help him there seems so many ways to tune a banjo. As I understand it he is after a Dixie/Blue grass sound, he talks of plectrum playing, I think he needs a long neck tenor, can anyone point me in the right direction.

ALL BANJO JOKES BANNED :-))))

Keith


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 10:49 AM

Three schools I think:

1. Long necked 5 stringers for old timey and Bluegrass
2. Longish necked 4 stringers for jazz
3 Shorter necked 4 stringers with light strings for Irish and similar tunes

The last tuned GDAE from the fat end - an octave below a fiddle


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 11:05 AM

Direct him to the Banjo Hangout website which has a lot of helpful experts on all styles and a massive archive of information.


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: The Sandman
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 11:56 AM

gdgbd is common, so is gcgbd, gcgcd, gdgcd


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: Mark Ross
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 01:26 PM

THE FOLK MUSIC SOURCEBOOK lists some 67 different tunings for the 5 string. I have also seen a list of about 130. Myself, I only use 5 or 6.



THE FOLK MUSIC SOURCEBOOK


Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: PHJim
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 04:06 PM

**A long necked 5 string is not usually used for bluegrass. Bluegrass is almost always played on a standard neck with a tone ring and resonator similar to a Gibson Mastertone. Blurass is most often played in gDGBD tuning.
**Old time music has less standardisation and can be played on resonator, open backs or tenor banjos with steel or gut/nylon strings.
Old time musicians, especially clawhammer players, use a variety of tunings as well.
**Long necked 5 strings are less common these days, but are still used by folk style players who play Pete Seeger style.
**Dixie or jazz players often use tenor banjos tuned CGDA, while Irish trad players often use tenors tuned GDAE.


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 04:12 PM

Don't think will get quite the right, characteristic banjo, rhythm with plectrum. Best IMO with forefinger & 2nd finger for top 2 strings, thumb ranging varyingly over 3 4 5: with or without finger-picks according to taste. I prefer tone without, myself.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: selby
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 04:22 PM

Many thanks for the info up to now, please keep it coming. What is Chicago Tuning?
Keith


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: Mark Ross
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 04:49 PM

DGBD like the top 4 strings of a guitar.

Mark Ross


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 05:07 PM

Except that the top string of a guitar is E...


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: PHJim
Date: 03 Jul 14 - 10:40 PM

Right...Chicago tuning on tenor guitar or tenor banjo is DGBE.


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 03:52 AM

i do not like tuning my top 5 string banjo string up to e, i would tune the whole thing down a tone, thus cfad.


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: The Sandman
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 10:50 AM

mgm i sometimes use inde for 4 middle for 2 and ring for 1, and thumb for 4and 5, similiar idea to you


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 02:49 PM

Yes, indeed, Dick, that can provide a variant lick. There are quite a lot of songs with banjo accompt on my youtube channel to get an idea of the licks I use. None of them 'standard', I don't think. I more or less improvise them. I find that, once the tune is, as it were, established in the listener's head, a good break can just consist of strumming the rhythm with back of index finger & thumb across all strings with the LH making the chord shapes. Every now and then playing a snatch of the tune singlestring as a between-verse riff can give effective continuity too.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: PHJim
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 05:08 PM

I don't often use the ring finger, but sometimes do what Peggy Seeger called the "lullaby lick".

_______M___________
____I_____I_____I__
_T_________________
___________________
_______T_____T_____

or I waltz time:

_______M___________M_____
____I_____I_____I_____I__
_T_______________________
_________________________
_______T_____T_____T_____


In dropped C tuning (gCGBD) it sounds good played:

_______R___________R_____
_______M___________M_____
____I_____I_____I_____I__
_T_______________________
_____________T___________


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: PHJim
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 11:30 PM

Please ignore the tab above:

_______M_____
____I_____I__
_T___________
_____________
_______T_____

3/4

_______M_____M_____
____I_____I_____I__
_T_________________
___________________
_______T_____T_____

Drop C tuning:

_______R___________R_____
_______M___________M_____
____I_____I_____I_____I__
_T_______________________
_____________T___________


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: PHJim
Date: 04 Jul 14 - 11:31 PM

Sorry that they line up so poorly.


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Subject: RE: Banjo Tunings
From: GUEST,Mike Turner
Date: 05 Jul 14 - 10:53 AM

I have just seen your postings and think you are an appreciator of Bob Schmertz songs. i know his son Jack, and have heard Bob sing in the late 60's. I'm looking for lyrics of two songs in particular: You should Read Your Gideon Bible, and Sinner Ain't Got No Parking Place (In The Geat White City of the Lord. Would you yave any info in thiese? At present I'm living in Scotland.

americanmike1217@gmial.com


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