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View Full Version : Baritone Uke Idea (take 2)



kissing
08-14-2009, 07:39 AM
A while ago, I made a post on whether its possible to have a Ukulele that's tuned to GCEA, but an octave lower than normal.

Well, as I was falling asleep, I got this bright idea on how it could be possible (on a Baritone Uke) without risking damage to the instrument.

Regular Baritone Uke strings are:
DGBE

What if you rearrange the order of the strings set up on the Baritone uke to:
GDEB

Then you retune those strings to:
GCEA


Since the D string is close to C, and the B string is close to A (one note down), I don't see why it shouldn't work. As a result, would we get a Baritone-sounding uke that retains the re-entrant GCEA?

Alas I don't have a Baritone Uke to try this on (but I intend to buy a Baritone Uke as my next purchase... specifically a Kala KA-BE with shadow pickup :D )

please comment and discuss~

Nonayourbeeswax
08-14-2009, 07:44 AM
Cool idea Sam! I always thought that it was weird that you had to learn new chords to play a baritone.

kissing
08-14-2009, 07:49 AM
LOL Hi Nona :D

You've caught me red-handed using my innovation towards ukuleles instead of ocarinas XD

Anyway, I'm putting forward this idea because I love the uke - but sometimes I want to play an instrument with more bass.
But I don't want to learn to play guitar, nor learn different chord fingerings... so why not have the same old GCEA, just tuned lower?

It's worth a try?
Anyway, when I get my Baritone Uke, I'll give it a try :D
Would appreciate it if anyone who has a Baritone uke could report on whether it works, in the name of ukulele science!

GrumpyCoyote
08-14-2009, 07:51 AM
Cool idea Sam! I always thought that it was weird that you had to learn new chords to play a baritone.

You don't - The chord shapes are the same. Only the key changes. So blues in A on a standard becomes blues in E on the baritone as an example... But the shapes are the same. It can be hard to remember to play a G shape instead of a D shape for example, but you don't need to learn anything new.

There are also GCEA strings for baritone - I forget who makes them, but there is a thread around here somewhere. They will let you string and tune your bari the same as a standard.

The cool idea here is to tune an octave lower - that I like in concept.

Nonayourbeeswax
08-14-2009, 07:56 AM
LOL Hi Nona :D

You've caught me red-handed using my innovation towards ukuleles instead of ocarinas XD

I'm just a guilty as you. I haven't been playing oc that much. :(

kissing
08-14-2009, 08:01 AM
I'm aware that there are GCEA standard tuning strings for Baritone (Aquila), but that's still tuned to the same octave as other ukes.

I personally think a low octave GCEA would be very nice :D

veep
08-14-2009, 08:02 AM
A while ago, I made a post on whether its possible to have a Ukulele that's tuned to GCEA, but an octave lower than normal.

Well, as I was falling asleep, I got this bright idea on how it could be possible (on a Baritone Uke) without risking damage to the instrument.

Regular Baritone Uke strings are:
DGBE

What if you rearrange the order of the strings set up on the Baritone uke to:
GDEB

Then you retune those strings to:
GCEA


Since the D string is close to C, and the B string is close to A (one note down), I don't see why it shouldn't work. As a result, would we get a Baritone-sounding uke that retains the re-entrant GCEA?

Alas I don't have a Baritone Uke to try this on (but I intend to buy a Baritone Uke as my next purchase... specifically a Kala KA-BE with shadow pickup :D )

please comment and discuss~

That sounds cool.

bradley10
08-14-2009, 11:27 AM
Regular Baritone Uke strings are:
DGBE

What if you rearrange the order of the strings set up on the Baritone uke to:
GDEB

Then you retune those strings to:
GCEA

I'm new and this is my first post. I like the idea of dropping it an octave, but I think doing it by just rearranging strings would cause unintended strings to become re-entrant.
Since each string in DGBE moves up a little in pitch if they are played open, rearranging to DGEB would cause you, starting at G to go down to D then back up to E and back down to B, because of the DG and BE being reversed.

I think it would then look like
gDeB and retuned would make it gCeA instead of gCEA.
That would make the g and e re-entrant.

This is my first post and I could be wrong, but hopefully that makes since to other people and not just in my head.

Ahnko Honu
08-14-2009, 11:50 AM
I just restrung my baritone with the Aquila gCEA and totally happy with sound and playability.

tadam3000
08-14-2009, 06:20 PM
Bradley is right... some of the strings would be an octave down (the c and a) but the other two (g and e) would be the same as a low-g tenor. Rather than look at uke strings, you might be better off looking at classical guitar strings and try to not break the neck while using the middle four (ADGB)