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kissing
07-31-2009, 09:28 PM
I've just been thinking whether it's possible get a Uke sound lower, with more bass - kinda like a guitar.

Except the fingerings is still exactly like a Uke with GCEA.
I just saw in the other topic that GCEA tuning is possible on a Baritone Uke - would this have the kind of deep, lower Uke sound I'm thinking of?

I know that the highlight of a Uke is its bright, high sound.
But there are just some times when I'd prefer a lower pitched accompaniment (yes.. that's what a guitar's for... but I really don't wanna learn how to play guitar... I love Uke).

I would love to hear what a GCEA Baritone Uke sounds like (sound samples :anyone: ). Otherwise, I wonder whether a Ukulele that takes strings which are GCEA one octave below could be developed (is it even practical?)

Just a thought... :confused:

Guting
07-31-2009, 09:34 PM
A search would tell you everything.

Link
07-31-2009, 09:35 PM
Try F#, B, D# , G#. I love it, especially on my low g flea soprano. Very low, but still ukulele-y sound. Same chord fingerings.. but they're obvious a half step lower.

Sound sample: (warning possible offensive song context)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k712rdDQvQ0

Guting
07-31-2009, 09:39 PM
Here is a sound sample of a lanikai lu21t a few steps down gcea

close to you (old version)

here (http://www.myspace.com/jrguting)

kissing
07-31-2009, 09:47 PM
hmm.. so going GCEA an entire octave down is too low?

I know one can go a few steps down on the tuning, but this would obviously place you in a different key.
This is not what I'm interested in.
I am wondering about actual GCEA tuned an octave lower than Soprano's GCEA (I believe a Baritone GCEA is in the same octave as the Soprano's) with fat strings.

Is taking the entire GCEA an octave down too low to be practical?

I mean... we already have low G, so a low A shouldn't be too low.
And I'm sure the E string on a guitar is lower than the E string on a Uke... so why not :anyone:

Guting
07-31-2009, 09:53 PM
sure if you like floppy strings, just try it out and see for yourself.

Citrus
07-31-2009, 09:54 PM
Here's a tenor
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_ejnbJk2Ns
and here's a the same song on what i believe to be a concert
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n9KsAURTlr8&feature=related
Getting a deeper and darker tone will usually be the result of moving up in uke size, and the opposite applies too.

Tuning down will do a little to change that, but you have to remember that if you're singing you need to adjust your singing pitch accordingly or it won't fit. A good example of a song that's sung at a lower tuning is here
http://ukulelehunt.com/2008/06/15/tonight-you-belong-to-me-the-jerk-version/
it's brought down to B tuning, it gives the uke a lower sound but not by as much as having a larger instrument.

seeso
07-31-2009, 09:58 PM
I suppose you could try buying a set of classical guitar strings and using the 6, 5, 4, and 3 strings to tune to G C E A an octave lower.

If your bridge pops off when you try it, I'm not responsible.

HoldinCoffee
07-31-2009, 10:10 PM
I would love to hear what a GCEA Baritone Uke sounds like (sound samples :anyone: ).

Here's a video sample of a baritone tuned reentrant GCEA:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eThIUwIVl5g
(By the way, I think he's playing a Mahalo Baritone!)

At second glance, I don't know if any of this answers your questions...

Dirka
07-31-2009, 10:28 PM
Why hasn't anyone mentioned low G? Too obvious? That would be the way to go, wouldn't it?

HoldinCoffee
07-31-2009, 10:32 PM
Why hasn't anyone mentioned low G? Too obvious? That would be the way to go, wouldn't it?

Good point, is that what he's asking? If so, MGM has Aquila baritone strings with low G cea.

kissing
07-31-2009, 10:53 PM
but why not "low G" [even lower C], [low E], [low A] ~~ ?

Perhaps this isn't something with enough demand to warrant being devloped :(
I'll have to look for a Baritone uke next and put low G strings on it so see what it's like.

Dirka
07-31-2009, 10:56 PM
You want low?

http://lh3.ggpht.com/_ZNgLQnmaioc/SlUjvyCSyOI/AAAAAAAACRQ/F75BFTVe54g/Fullscreen%20capture%20782009%2035107%20PM.jpg

:D

kissing
07-31-2009, 11:03 PM
bleh, its just that the Uke seems to be mostly High-rangey and Mid-rangey.
It's a beautiful sound... but it lacks Bass.

And today I was wondering - Why is this so??
Why does the Baritone have to be re-tuned like a guitar to have that low pitch... why not just simply a lower GCEA?

clayton56
07-31-2009, 11:04 PM
Why not get a uke bass? They go lower than you want, and you would be playing and thinking in terms of bass rather than treble.


http://www.bassuke.com/

seeso
08-01-2009, 04:43 AM
Why don't you try my suggestion? Use the bottom four classical strings and tune them an octave lower.

kissing
08-01-2009, 04:49 AM
first i'll need a baritone uke :D

Well.. I guess I could experiment on some cheap Mahalo Soprano's.. though their small bodies may not be so fitting for those fat strings
And I did read your fine print.... D:

inkandsilver
08-01-2009, 05:06 AM
I've thought about that before, too. Essentially what you're talking about is an octave uke, if we can make the comparison to the mandolin family of instruments. Here's a guy who made one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tl7FRdJhJUU

Beyond that, Seeso's recommendation is the only one so far that addresses what you're after. If you try it out please report back.

bbycrts
08-01-2009, 05:45 AM
but why not "low G" [even lower C], [low E], [low A] ~~ ?

Perhaps this isn't something with enough demand to warrant being devloped :(
I'll have to look for a Baritone uke next and put low G strings on it so see what it's like.

I can't help but thing that even if you found strings fat enough (have you seen the honkers on the bass uke?), you would still have floppy strings by tuning down an entire octave. Heck, standard guitar tuning isn't even down that far. I don't know a lot about this - but what is the tuning on a bass? I appreciate the sound you're looking for - but I just don't think this is the instrument for that sound!

seeso
08-01-2009, 05:51 AM
I can't help but thing that even if you found strings fat enough (have you seen the honkers on the bass uke?), you would still have floppy strings by tuning down an entire octave. Heck, standard guitar tuning isn't even down that far. I don't know a lot about this - but what is the tuning on a bass? I appreciate the sound you're looking for - but I just don't think this is the instrument for that sound!

Standard guitar tuning is lower than an octave down from standard ukulele. The low E on a guitar is still 3 semitones down from what the low G would be in the tuning that the OP is looking for.

bbycrts
08-01-2009, 06:52 AM
Standard guitar tuning is lower than an octave down from standard ukulele. The low E on a guitar is still 3 semitones down from what the low G would be in the tuning that the OP is looking for.

See? Told you I don't know much about this!

So I guess another question I have is whether the limited volume of the uke body can really support the lower notes? I have seen MGM and Mike Upton's vids on the Kala bass, and the comments seem to be that it really HAS to be amped in order to be heard.

Sorry, not trying to be a downer, just trying to think out loud on anything that might cause you problems before you start on the project!

Ukulele JJ
08-01-2009, 07:01 AM
Why hasn't anyone mentioned low G? Too obvious? That would be the way to go, wouldn't it?

Well, with that you'd be able to play as low as the G below middle-C. But if you had an "octave lower" uke, you could play as low as the C below middle-C. That is, you'd have seven more low notes to play with, compared to a regular low-G uke.

Basically, it would be the same relationship that a bass guitar has with a regular guitar--the strings are the same notes, just an octave lower all around. Sounds like a cool idea.

JJ

Lori
08-01-2009, 07:02 AM
If you look at instruments in general, it's the large ones that make the lowest tones. You are trying to get a bass or a cello out of a violin. I found that on acoustic instruments, just making the string thicker might give you lower notes, but a short thick string doesn't sound as good as a long thick string. And notice how big the sound boxes are for those low sounding instruments.

I suspect, what you need is a four string guitar-size uke. I have never seen one, but you could test the concept on a regular guitar using only four strings.

–Lori

Pippin
08-01-2009, 07:28 AM
If you look at instruments in general, it's the large ones that make the lowest tones. You are trying to get a bass or a cello out of a violin. I found that on acoustic instruments, just making the string thicker might give you lower notes, but a short thick string doesn't sound as good as a long thick string. And notice how big the sound boxes are for those low sounding instruments.

I suspect, what you need is a four string guitar-size uke. I have never seen one, but you could test the concept on a regular guitar using only four strings.

–Lori

Good analogy.

I'll urge you to go with the baritone uke. A baritone uke adds so much to the sound of a ukulele group jam. I have hooked a lot of people on baritone ukes by bringing them to jam sessions.

vahn
08-01-2009, 08:14 AM
I've just been thinking whether it's possible get a Uke sound lower, with more bass - kinda like a guitar.

Except the fingerings is still exactly like a Uke with GCEA.
I just saw in the other topic that GCEA tuning is possible on a Baritone Uke - would this have the kind of deep, lower Uke sound I'm thinking of?



Just buy a baritone; DGBE tuning is the same fingerings as GCEA, same relationship between strings, and its a whole "fourth" (or string) lower.

I would accomplish this on a tenor by using classical guitar ADGB (dont use the high or low strings) and then tune them up a fourth to DGBE. the chord forms are all the same, except a "G" chord on GCEA uke gives you a "D" chord (just like guitar).

TBH i have to agree that going a whole octave down GCEA doesnt really make much sense. But maybe if you were to take a tenor guitar, leave the A string on it, and use guitar (medium or heavy) EAD strings tuned up 2-3 steps to GCE that would work for a steel string version

Kanaka916
08-01-2009, 10:46 AM
Why hasn't anyone mentioned low G? Too obvious? That would be the way to go, wouldn't it?
You read my mind - too cool! Try a low G . . .

Teek
08-01-2009, 11:09 AM
Yes, you can use all the same GCEA fingerings on a baritone and play it like a longer scale tenor, but actual baritone chords for a DGBE tuned baritone are all different fingerings from GCEA. :confused: That's why I just play it like it's a tenor... nobody else is around to have to worry about playing with in the same key. Using the term "play" loosely of course. :o

clayton56
08-01-2009, 05:42 PM
Why don't you try my suggestion? Use the bottom four classical strings and tune them an octave lower.

You're in the ballpark, but some of the strings would be too tight or too loose because the relationship of the strings to each other is different.

The four low guitar strings are all 5 frets apart and OP wants the fourth and third strings 5 frets apart, with the 2nd string only 4 frets higher and then the first 5 frets up from there.

The guitar's scale length is longer, so it should work to tune the E string up to G, the A string up to C, etc. Maybe then you could get first and second strings from a heavier gauge set to compensate for the lower tension, since you won't be tuning these as high as the bottom two.

People work out custom sets all the time, you might look into a place that can supply you with individual strings and you specify the gauges.

Or you could order a custom baritone with a 25" or 26" neck and use regular baritone strings, just tuning lower. The longer scale would give you the proper tension, and the relationship between the strings would be correct.

You could also look into small-bodied guitars and backpacker guitars, and see what their scale lengths are. See if they'll take baritone strings. You could even add extra strings later if you want some 6-string baritone sounds, like maybe doubling the two low strings an octave up.