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sailboats
01-13-2011, 04:19 AM
1)Why do people say "my dog has fleas?" I understand it's is to for tuning purposes. but why that phrase?

2)My first tenor had D'Addario strings with a wound C. I didn't like the sound and soon after changed the strings. Do many people play with the wound C?

3)Low G - I vaguely remember reading some people have picked up the 4th string of a classical guitar to make the Low G on their ukulele. The music store does not have much for strings so this looks to be my option. Anyone else try this? did it work well?

4) When a chord can be named in more than one way how do you decide what name it goes by?

mm stan
01-13-2011, 04:33 AM
Aloha Saiboats,
Welcome to the UU and our humble forums.....have fun and enjoy! Happy strumming....MM Stan..
1)when you strum the individual strings down and when tuned perfect....it will sound like ..my dog has fleas...
2)I have them on few of my tenors..some players don't like it and say it over powers the other strings or it makes a scratching noise when you pick..
3)sorry have tried, stick to the conventional strings..
4)You can name it any way you like, when you look at chord sheets you generally go by that name...

Kanaka916
01-13-2011, 05:41 AM
1)Why do people say "my dog has fleas?" I understand it's is to for tuning purposes. but why that phrase?
Found this explanation . . . The traditional chant, "my dog has fleas" is "sung" to the notes of the four open strings of the ukulele. For purpose of discussion we will refer to the strings with the contemporary "C" tuning. The fourth string, "my" is a G, a full step below a 440 A. The third string, "dog" is C below the G. The 2nd string, "has" is an E, below the afore mentioned G. The first string, "dog" is a 440 A, higher than the G we've been talking about. This way of tuning a stringed instrument, having the fourth string higher than the third and/or second, is called re- entrant. So get your uke tuned up. Sound the 4th string and sing that note, using the word "my". Sound the third string and sing that note, which will be lower than the 4th string, using the word "dog". Sound the second string and sing that note, which will be higher than the third string but lower than fourth, using the word "has". Now, as the coda to this musical event, sound the first string and sing that note, which will be a 440 A, higher than that G we've been discussing, using the word "fleas".

2)My first tenor had D'Addario strings with a wound C. I didn't like the sound and soon after changed the strings. Do many people play with the wound C?
Some people do, it's just a matter of preference.

3)Low G - I vaguely remember reading some people have picked up the 4th string of a classical guitar to make the Low G on their ukulele. The music store does not have much for strings so this looks to be my option. Anyone else try this? did it work well?
Guitar D string for uke low g and yes, works quite well. See also tje section on Ukulele Strings (http://www.curtsheller.com/ukulele/strings/index.php) at Curt Sheller's site. See also FYI Uke Strings (http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?39969-FYI-Uke-Strings).

4) When a chord can be named in more than one way how do you decide what name it goes by?

sailboats
01-13-2011, 05:55 AM
Thanks,

Its worth a try with the classical string. If I don't like it I will just have to order some strings online.

Still not sure if i get where my dog has fleas thing comes from though. I mean, I understand that it's the phrase people use to tune the uke. So it's because the phrase sounds like the notes gcea?

Ok so i somehow missed the whole first line of your reply Kanaka916 ignore my above question!

Thanks for all the help!

808boy
01-13-2011, 06:14 AM
Aloha sailboats,
I'm with you on that phrase"my dogs has fleas". Don't know who coined that phrase but it's what I learned in the mid 50's as a kid in Hawaii learning the uke from the neighborhood kids. If I remember correctly, the phrase used in Japan is "Sa Na Ko San", Sanako being a popular girls name. I suppose any 4 word term can be used......................BO...............

Gmoney
01-13-2011, 06:17 AM
The traditional chant, "my dog has fleas" is "sung" to the notes of the four open strings of the ukulele

And there's the confusion - everywhere I look has some variation of that same answer, but no video or tab or lyrics, etc. of that "traditional song". There's even some modern rewrites of the song or simply created anew. Maybe this is one of those, "no one actually knows the origin.." type questions. But still nagging to me, at least.

fitncrafty
01-13-2011, 06:23 AM
And there's the confusion - everywhere I look has some variation of that same answer, but no video or tab or lyrics, etc. of that "traditional song". There's even some modern rewrites of the song or simply created anew. Maybe this is one of those, "no one actually knows the origin.." type questions. But still nagging to me, at least.

maybe look at violin history with 'my dog has fleas' they use that with violins too.. although the strings I believe are GDEA...

olgoat52
01-13-2011, 06:30 AM
Sing it out loud enough and you will never forget it. I suspect it has been around from the first surge of popularity of the uke or even earlier. I saw one conjecture that the ditty was related to the translation of ukulele as "jumping flea" which is probably not a bad guess.

sailboats
01-13-2011, 06:36 AM
I guess its just one of those things we may never know for certain.

olgoat52
01-13-2011, 06:42 AM
maybe look at violin history with 'my dog has fleas' they use that with violins too.. although the strings I believe are GDEA...

Violin is not tuned re-entrant. The G is a low G, not a high G.

claudios
01-13-2011, 07:12 AM
4) When a chord can be named in more than one way how do you decide what name it goes by?


1) Choose the right chord name for the key E.g. A# or Bb.
2) If something like Am7 versus C6 then its not that important - Especially if you're reading tab

sailboats
01-13-2011, 07:27 AM
1) Choose the right chord name for the key E.g. A# or Bb.
2) If something like Am7 versus C6 then its not that important - Especially if you're reading tab

Thanks,

I understand the flat and shap naming (as of a few hours ago haha.) I know its not too important when you have cords like Am7 vs C6 but is there any set methods for that or just what chord name you prefer?

janeray1940
01-13-2011, 07:33 AM
Thanks,

I understand the flat and shap naming (as of a few hours ago haha.) I know its not too important when you have cords like Am7 vs C6 but is there any set methods for that or just what chord name you prefer?

My understanding is that the naming is based on how the chord functions in a particular progression. I'm not that well-versed in music theory quite yet, but hoping that someone who is can build on this... Anyone??

70sSanO
01-13-2011, 10:46 AM
It can be one of two things...

Which designation will be more impressive to others... I'm playing a C#Dim7 or GDim7.

or...

It could be as others have suggested, the chord progression based on the key that song is being played.

Since the second one is more difficult to figure out, I usually go with the first one.

When you get good you can play C# Aug Dim7 +5... I need to figure that one out but it probably ends up as a one or two finger chord.

John

sailboats
01-14-2011, 01:17 PM
Well I tried a dlassical D string on one of my ukes and it sounded dead =( They only had a cheepo classical strings in singles at my local music store so i have not dismissed the Idea. Though, if i am to go to anther music store it makes more sense to just pick up an ukulele low g string then grabbing a classical string.

alsnsku1
01-14-2011, 01:41 PM
Last year at the Cairns Ukulele Festival I heard Seaman Dan, a well-known musician from the Torres Strait, say that people in the Torres Strait would use the expression "Hel-lo Cock-ee" (Hello Cocky, short for cockatoo, which is a big, white Australian parrot), for tuning their ukes.

Looks like "My Dog Has Fleas" is not the only phrase used; does anyone know of any other?

sailboats
02-01-2011, 08:58 AM
New question. I am pretty sure I saw people talking about chords and refer to a bass note. can someone enlighten me to this? is there a bass note in every chord?