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Thread: I never cared for baritone ukuleles until.....

  1. #11
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    My fifths-tuned GDAE bari is my go-to instrument these days; the octave mandolin tuning puts it only a third above guitar range. Some claim the baritone body is too small for that, but I say "balderdash". I'd like to get another some day to experiment with cello tuning. Love the low tones and sustain the most!

    bratsche
    A bunch of stringed instruments tuned in fifths. And a bunch of cats!


    "There are two refuges from the miseries of life: music and cats." - Albert Schweitzer

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  2. #12
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    I've heard of fifths tuning before, I think fiddles are tuned in fifths, no? I see the notes you all tune them in, but I don't get it. Obviously, the chords must be different from gCEA, but where do you find sheet music and chord charts for this? It all seems very confusing.
    "Those who bring sunshine and laughter to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves".

    Music washes from the soul, the dust of everyday living.

  3. #13
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    I just read whatever treble clef sheet music, but it sounds an octave lower. Yes, a violin is tuned GDAE also, as is mandolin. As for chord charts, I don't use them and couldn't decipher them anyhow, but octave mandolin ones would probably work fine. Or just mandolin, but the baritone uke scale is quite longer, so you'd want to use different fingerings. Booli will probably chime in with more insights on chords. I just make mine up accordingly.

    bratsche
    A bunch of stringed instruments tuned in fifths. And a bunch of cats!


    "There are two refuges from the miseries of life: music and cats." - Albert Schweitzer

    GearGems - Gifts & apparel for musicians and more!

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nickie View Post
    I've heard of fifths tuning before, I think fiddles are tuned in fifths, no? I see the notes you all tune them in, but I don't get it. Obviously, the chords must be different from gCEA, but where do you find sheet music and chord charts for this? It all seems very confusing.
    Yes, the fingerings are different, as are the scale intervals...

    There are a few sites that have a PDF that you can download that shows ALL of the chords for MANDOLIN, which is GDAE, and also any melody lines written for Violin will work too since as bratsche said violin is also GDAE.

    Also, there are PDF files of ALL the chords for CGDA tuning, which is used for viola, mandola, some cello, and ALSO tenor guitar, which are all tuned to CGDA.

    I will try to find the links in my bookmarks and share them here.

    The cool thing about fifths tuning is that ANY chord 'shape' can be moved ANYWHERE on the neck, as well as any chord that might be using only 3 fretted strings, you can use a chord shape on the GDA strings, and on the same fret move it down to use the DAE strings and right there you are a fifth higher in chord name.

    Also, figuring out the difference of Major vs. Minor chords only requires you to alter the '3rd' tone of the chord triad by 2 frets, and this works all over the fretboard...

    I am just learning the 7th and Diminshed chords, and after that looking at 9th chords...

    Once you know the 'shape', then all you need is the fret position to name the chord

    This is easier to me than the modified-fourths tuning used on ukulele and guitar.

    I want to restring and retune my Cordoba Mini (bari scale classical guitar) in fifths tuning (F1-C2-G2-D3-A3-E4), but I am still researching which strings to get for the right tension that will intonate properly. I want to see how this works on 6-strings, and am expecting it to open a whole new world of playing and songwriting for me...

    Apologies for the digression to the original topic of this thread.
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  5. #15
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    Ubulele, true, I might need a brain specialist, but not because of my fifths preferences. (Yep, I saw that, before you edited it out! :P ) And when I can't stretch enough, I let my fingers do the walking, sorta like the old Yellow Pages commercials. But this post should help explain how I fell into this online ukulele club, quite by happy accident.

    bratsche
    A bunch of stringed instruments tuned in fifths. And a bunch of cats!


    "There are two refuges from the miseries of life: music and cats." - Albert Schweitzer

    GearGems - Gifts & apparel for musicians and more!

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill1 View Post
    The ukulele is a great gateway instrument, that is almost a cliche now. It is entirely natural to learn how to play a ukulele and open your mind to the wider world of music. Its like a whole universe, full of wonderful stars and planets, and a few black holes, to visit. Moving on to a different instrument is a nice way to try something new that has some exciting risks, but none of the risks are dangerous to your health or well being. Another instrument to look at is the simple tin whistle, it costs very little and can be a gateway to the parallel world of wind instruments which can sound amazing, but also can be very helpful with things to do with breathing.
    I found owning a baritone in DGBE and other ukes in GCEA to be very helpful in learning how to transpose and do some other musical things without actually having to spend hours and hours studying just transposing or the other things. The learning is almost a natural extension of learning to play the baritone. I have also found that if you have both GCEA and DGBE tunings available, you can easily play almost every melody written on one of them in the first five frets.
    When I fitted GCEA strings to my baritone, I did not like the tension and took the strings off after a few days and went back to DGBE on the baritone.
    I had the same experience on a Baritone. GCEA was too tight/ sounded too high. DGBE linear sounds just a little bit too low/too floppy (but better than GCEA imo).
    I'm sure Dirk/Southcoast can give a better explanation, but I think Bb tuning is right in the sweet spot for a baritone (I believe linear on the baritone).
    I've gotten rid of all my bigger ukes and just have soprano's and concert's, but I could be tempted for a baritone just for the uniquely different sound of it. I do kind of miss it.
    "If a lot of people play the ukulele, the world would be a better place to live."

  7. #17
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    I have a Hora (Romanian) solid mahogany baritone uke tuned GCEA (Living Water strings). It was the first baritone I got and I was intimidated by the different tuning .... and, YES, I know - same chord shapes but different names! (I was young and foolish; it must have been at least a year ago!) Now I have ...er, two or three more (?) baritones, all tuned "properly", and I have to say that I am beginning to prefer baritones to more traditional ukes. I must admit, though, that when I come to play something which uke I pick up depends on which one has the easier chord shapes for the song ... sorry!!!
    Walnut Flea Soprano, Eleuke Peanut, Rob Collins Soprano, Motu, Ukubidon, Gretsch Camp Ukulele, Tenor "Style Manouche", Hora mahogany Baritone, Roger Terry baritone, Sylvain Enjoubaut concert, Outdoor Ukulele (tenor), Ohana Vita, Ohana KA-6 (6-string tenor), DoudsandJo electro-acoustic tenor.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nickie View Post
    I've heard of fifths tuning before, I think fiddles are tuned in fifths, no? I see the notes you all tune them in, but I don't get it. Obviously, the chords must be different from gCEA, but where do you find sheet music and chord charts for this? It all seems very confusing.
    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.

    Kamaka HF-1 100

  9. #19
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    I'm afraid to try a baritone...I might like it...and set a new UAS brushfire

  10. #20
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    I keep my baritone around to remind myself that I really don't want a guitar. I like the sound, but can't quite do the stretch.
    Tiny Tenor spruce/mahogany
    Kiwaya KTC-2 mahogany concert
    Timms 1K soprano
    Kiwaya KS-5 soprano
    Flight Travel soprano

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