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Thread: Is a baritone just a lazy man's little guitar?

  1. #31
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    Does it matter what you call it? In the right hands, it can create beautiful music.
    More an appreciator of the ukulele than a true player. My motto is: "Don't matter how good it ring if it ain't got some bling."

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  2. #32
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    I've been playing mandola for years (viola counterpart in the mandolin family). Came here from MandolinCafe, my other hangout. Started this baritone-bodied endeavor instead of getting an octave mandolin, and got hooked on the different sound.

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  3. #33

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    I played quite many years guitar with fourths tuning, EADGCF. It was an electric. so all i did was some silly fast solos. Not possible use much chord forms.

    The top 4 first strings are what make a standard guitar also possible to play so many chords. Because uke has it the same relatively, it is a very good chord playing tool.
    I just wonder about the fifths tuning in that sense.
    Last edited by Jarmo_S; 10-12-2017 at 06:14 PM.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarmo_S View Post
    I played quite many years guitar with fourths tuning, EADGCF. It was an electric. so all i did was some silly fast solos. Not possible use much chord forms.

    The top 4 first strings are what make a standard guitar also possible to play so many chords. Because uke has it the same relatively, it is a very good chord playing tool.
    I just wonder about the fifths tuning in that sense.
    Hi, Jarmo_S! I've once post about this before.

    Our ukulele is 4ths tuning. It has 4 frets for 1st position. It designed for our 4 fingers (i, m r and p in the photo). Hence we don't need extra move of left hand within this position. On the other hand, 5ths tuning has 5 frets for 1st position. Pinkey may be bit busy in this tuning. But it gains more notes in 4 strings. 4ths is very good for chord play. 5ths is very good for melody.



    Actually violin, viola and mandolin are very good for melody play. And ukulele can play chord very easily.
    Kamaka HF-1 100

  5. #35

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    No zztush, ukulele or guitar are not fourth interval tuned instruments.
    They have an exception between 2nd and 3rd strings, the interval is major 3rd. Other strings are yes tuned fourth apart from each other. Well on uke it would actually need low G for even that.

    I told in my post above but maybe it was not told very clear. Exactly this exception makes it possible for ukulele to be a good chording machine

    The fourth tuning on ukulele would be G C F Bb. It certainly is not much used. For soloing it would be logical of course.
    And since this is a baritone "uke" thread, fourth tuning for it is my previous post's DGCF, same as for guitar. Not recommended by me, this tuning.
    Last edited by Jarmo_S; 10-12-2017 at 07:15 PM.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarmo_S View Post
    I told in my post above but maybe it was not told very clear. Exactly this exception makes it possible for ukulele to be a good chording machine
    Hi, Jarmo_S!

    Yes, this exception bring us great chording machine. Without this exception (B' and E' in the figures below), we can not play B and E.

    Kamaka HF-1 100

  7. #37
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    Yes, if it's tuned DGBE, it is a small guitar without the bass strings. It nevertheless has its own sound and feel to it. I've had both a regular guitar and a baritone ukulele, and the experience (and sound) of playing and handling them was completely different. The baritone felt good and accessible to me, with great sound characteristics. I really enjoyed it and I still regret selling it (I thought getting a guitarlele instead would expand the possibilities while providing a very similar experience, but I was very wrong about that). The guitar, on the other hand, felt "too big", both from the perspectives of ergonomics and sound. I felt the sound was "too full", "too much". While I'm a relatively tall person, I still found it a bit cumbersome to get comfortable with.

    I don't really know how to put this in words, but while I like listening to others play guitar, I didn't enjoy playing the guitar myself, nor the sound I made. The baritone felt in many ways right to me, certainly better than both tenor ukuleles and guitars. Six strings were also one too many for me. I've since learned that five strings work well for me (on the banjo) and four do too, but six somehow didn't do it for me. I still have my acoustic guitar and I'm not done with it, but if I could travel back in time, I'd still have my baritone and wouldn't have the guitar.

    As for other people, they'll always do and think what they want. I find that most non-musicians ultimately don't care about what instrument you play as long as they enjoy the music that you do play. The instrument can be an attention getter and a talking point (if you are a non-musician and you want to make conversation, you may well say something like "that's a cute little guitar!"), but beyond that it's just a tool that is more interesting to the aficionados than to other folks.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by zztush View Post
    Hi, Jarmo_S! I've once post about this before.

    Our ukulele is 4ths tuning. It has 4 frets for 1st position. It designed for our 4 fingers (i, m r and p in the photo). Hence we don't need extra move of left hand within this position. On the other hand, 5ths tuning has 5 frets for 1st position. Pinkey may be bit busy in this tuning. But it gains more notes in 4 strings. 4ths is very good for chord play. 5ths is very good for melody.



    Actually violin, viola and mandolin are very good for melody play. And ukulele can play chord very easily.
    Surely, there's a mistake in your fifths tuning picture here? You show GDA on the sixth fret. Shouldn't it be the seventh fret? In fact the seventh fret gives GDAE.
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  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarmo_S View Post
    ...... you are certainly not anymore an ukulele player.
    Baritone scale fingerboard is not an uke scale in my opinion, but with your tuning it certainly is not anymore even an ukulele.
    Weird, is not a car with a small engine just as much a car with a big engine, a lorry with 4 wheels is as much a lorry with 8 wheels?

    It comes down to how the instrument is constructed, I think, ukes are more lightly built than guitars, & just because it is tuned differently doesn't make it a different instrument. We often have debates about high G, low G, so high D, low D is just another side to ukes, as is fifths tuning, each to their own.
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  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by uke1950 View Post
    Weird, is not a car with a small engine just as much a car with a big engine, a lorry with 4 wheels is as much a lorry with 8 wheels?
    They are cars, just like guitars and baritones are stringed instruments. But there are differences between coupés and SUVs, and you'd not say "I drive a sports car!" when your car is a VW Beetle.

    I think of a linear baritone more as a four-string guitar than a ukulele, and of people playing them as baritone players rather than ukulele players. Both are musicians, playing stringed instruments of the same immediate family that create sound in a similar way. The low-G debate, well, I can argue both sides of that topic, and overall feel that linear tuning waters down the unique characteristic of the instrument. The standard tuning of an instrument probably contributes to what it is, label-wise, regardless of the niche tunings that also exist.

    Then again, I don't really know why it matters whether or not baritone players are considered ukulele players. Easiest to just call them baritone players! Since the instrument has always (since its reinvention in the past century) been called a baritone ukulele, they fit in more with our community here than with the guitar crowd.

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