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Thread: Tuning Down A Full Step On A Concert-Scale Ukulele

  1. #1
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    Default Tuning Down A Full Step On A Concert-Scale Ukulele

    Hi friends, I have had good results in the past with tuning a tenor-scale ukulele down a full step, to "f Bb D G", using Martin M-620 tenor-scale strings. I liked the tone and the feel it produced on the tenor uke in that lower tuning. I am wondering if any of you might have tried doing the same thing on a CONCERT-scale ukulele, and if so, what kind of results you had? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Bill, sorry I can't answer your question as I don't play concert, but I'm gonna try your tuning on my tenor. Thanks for the post!
    Kala KA-TE tenor uke (currently tuned F-Bb-D-G w/Worth Browns)
    Kala APB-CTG baritone uke (currently tuned D-G-B-E w/Martin 22 Baritone strings)
    Ohana BK-35CG baritone uke (tuned A-D-F#-B w/Savarez classical guitar strings)
    Various guitars, banjos, and basses

  3. #3
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    You bet, John. I know this isn't very well defined, but the thing I liked about that lower tuning on the tenor was that it made everything feel more relaxed, more "jazzy", if you will. And it makes things a little easier on the vocal cords if you're singing. I would imagine that using Martin M-620's (designed for tenor) on a concert uke ought to work fine in the lower tuning; I'm not sure if there will be issues with the tension feeling too loose, but I'll probably just give it a try and see what happens...

  4. #4
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    I tune my concert down to B or Bb and it seems to work just fine. I have used Oasis Warm strings Tension & intonation are also quite nice
    Grandma Uker Penny

  5. #5

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    How would you play some of your chords like f? You start it on 3rd fret second string?

  6. #6
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    If using Bill's tuning of F-Bb-D-G, you could play an F chord this way: 4th string open (because it's an F), third string second fret (that's a C), second string third fret (that's an F), and first string second fret (that's an A).
    Kala KA-TE tenor uke (currently tuned F-Bb-D-G w/Worth Browns)
    Kala APB-CTG baritone uke (currently tuned D-G-B-E w/Martin 22 Baritone strings)
    Ohana BK-35CG baritone uke (tuned A-D-F#-B w/Savarez classical guitar strings)
    Various guitars, banjos, and basses

  7. #7
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    In general, if you're switching from G-C-E-A tuning to F-Bb-D-G tuning, you would move each chord two frets higher up the neck.
    Kala KA-TE tenor uke (currently tuned F-Bb-D-G w/Worth Browns)
    Kala APB-CTG baritone uke (currently tuned D-G-B-E w/Martin 22 Baritone strings)
    Ohana BK-35CG baritone uke (tuned A-D-F#-B w/Savarez classical guitar strings)
    Various guitars, banjos, and basses

  8. #8

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    Oops miscounted going up neck. Thanks

  9. #9
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    You are welcome.

    And Bill, I'm liking this tuning a lot on my tenor. It opens up some good possibilities for me.
    Kala KA-TE tenor uke (currently tuned F-Bb-D-G w/Worth Browns)
    Kala APB-CTG baritone uke (currently tuned D-G-B-E w/Martin 22 Baritone strings)
    Ohana BK-35CG baritone uke (tuned A-D-F#-B w/Savarez classical guitar strings)
    Various guitars, banjos, and basses

  10. #10
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    JoCo, NC (near Raleigh)
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    Quote Originally Posted by captain-janeway View Post
    How would you play some of your chords like f? You start it on 3rd fret second string?
    You (well, me anyway) play your chords as you always do, treating the uke as a transposing instrument. If you're reading from a Bb chart "it just works":
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lKvgqg6BJCA
    Ukulele:
    Iriguchi Tenor "Weeble" - A, WoU Clarity
    Blue Star 19" baritone Konablaster - DGBE
    Cocobolo 16" SC#1-gCEA, SC SLMU
    Ono #42 19" baritone, Ab, LW
    Imua iET-Bb, M600
    Covered Bridge CLN pineapple - Eb cuatro, SC XLL
    Rogue bari
    Bonanza super tenor, cFAD SC LHU
    Kala KSLNG, Eb SC XLU
    Flea soprano, C LW
    Hanson 5-string tenor, dGCEA
    Bonanza SLN GCEA
    Bonanzalele concert
    Guitars:
    Jupiter #47, G, TI CF127
    Pelem, A, EJ45LP

    !Flukutronic!

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