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Thread: Low G - reading music

  1. #1
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    Default Low G - reading music

    Probably a silly question here:

    I've just got my first low g strung uke and am wondering if that changes anything for following tabs or even just reading chords. It sounds a bit off but it may just be because I'm used to the high g sound.

    Thanks all.

  2. #2
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    Yes a low G setup will sound different if you have been used to only re entrant, but you can play everything the same as you did on re entrant. If you had played guitar, I don't think you'd find it odd sounding.
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  3. #3
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    Reading tabs is the same. Just verify that the tabs are for low G. Very often it is mentioned at the top, next to the title. Some people have separate pages or lists for high and low G.

    Check out the menu on the right and you'll find some tabs to play from on your low G uke:
    https://pdfminstrel.wordpress.com/

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by badscooter View Post
    Probably a silly question here:

    I've just got my first low g strung uke and am wondering if that changes anything for following tabs or even just reading chords. It sounds a bit off but it may just be because I'm used to the high g sound.

    Thanks all.
    You can play chords the same, and yes they will sound different because they are a different voicing. However, you'll get over that. Nowadays I associate the shrill re-entrant tuning with the high-pitched nagging of a spouse or the hollow, bass-less whine of the winged soul as it leaves the body (as in Homeric epic). It takes me about thirty seconds when I change from linear to re-entrant, or vice-versa. That first thirty seconds is off-putting, but then you get re-adjusted to the G string.

    Since you are reading tabs and not actually reading music, then you should know that the tabs you have may or may not sound right. Sometimes it will sound like an interesting variation. Sometimes it will sound totally random and inappropriate. It will depend on the song. The second best option would be to have two stacks of songs--one for each tuning. Patently, the best option would be to learn about FACE and Every Good Boy Does Fine and standard notation so that you could take any song and play it with either tuning.

  5. #5
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    Thanks all. Appreciate the advice.

  6. #6
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    Hi badscooter - I have two stacks of tabs - like riprock suggested - and that seems to work best for me. Most tabs of low-g will tell you on the page that's what they're for. And while collecting the tabs, again as riprock points out, working towards learning the treble clef and the fretboard is the way to go.

  7. #7
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    The only real problem with Low G and Tabs is when the tab indicates the G string for a melody note. Obviously, with the Low G string, that note will be an octave too low. I usually just substitute the third fret on the E string, or less often, the seventh fret on the C string to get the G note needed for the melody line. Of course, Tabs written especially for the Low G setup works best.
    "The sole cause of all human misery is the inability of people
    to sit quietly in their rooms." - Blaise Pascal, 1670

  8. #8
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    Badscooter, Imagine you are playing a well known song melody using TABS. Suddenly, a note you are supposed to play on the g-string is an octave too low. It doesn't sound right. It sounds as though you made a mistake.

    You can't always substitute the notes on the other strings because you may be playing notes on them at the same time. Many TABs avoid the G-String as much as possible to avoid the conflicts.

    Sometimes the Low-G string will sound OK. Sometimes it won't. The best bet is to use Low-G TABs when you can. Enjoy you new Low-G.
    There is a subtle yet profound difference between the learning of something and the knowing of that thing.
    You can learn by reading, but you don’t begin to know until you begin to try to do.

    —Lou Churchill, Plane & Pilot Magazine

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