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Jun 13, 2022 - 2:07:45 PM
Players Union Member

boxbow

USA

2725 posts since 2/3/2011

Do you tune the G up to match the D or do you tune it down to an octave of the D? I've tried dropping the pitch and had a really noodly string, but usable. While it seems that I should be able to tune the G up, the prospect makes me uncertain.

Jun 13, 2022 - 2:11:15 PM

gapbob

USA

824 posts since 4/20/2008

Tuning it up would seem to be WAY more tension than the G string was designed for, you will exceed Young's modulus, stretch out the string, and have a qwonky string on your fiddle.

I have not tried it though, except maybe in my younger days trying to reuse strings, might have put the wrong string on and tuned 'er up.  Qwonky.

Edited by - gapbob on 06/13/2022 14:12:44

Jun 13, 2022 - 2:13:40 PM
Players Union Member

boxbow

USA

2725 posts since 2/3/2011

That means either tuning down or substituting a D string for the G. I hope Young's modulus is feeling better.

Jun 13, 2022 - 2:40:33 PM

DougD

USA

10661 posts since 12/2/2007

You tune the G string down to an octave below the D string. Two tunes most notably played in this tuning are "Bonaparte's Retreat" and "Midnight on the Water," but Luther Strong used it for this recording of "Ways of the World." slippery-hill.com/content/ways-world
You can hear it down there.

Jun 13, 2022 - 2:58:19 PM

13485 posts since 9/23/2009

Tune down but for me it's such a sloppy sound I can't deal with it. Might work out on some fiddles, but mine goes into infinite, wide-vib, super bass and sloppy mode and I just can't do it.

Jun 13, 2022 - 3:06:43 PM

DougD

USA

10661 posts since 12/2/2007

Might depend on the type of string and possibly the fiddle - maybe better with heavier strings. Its supposed to suggest the drone of the bagpipes in "Bonaparte's." I played a double fiddle version of "Midnight on the Water" in a theater production, but we were both in standard.

Jun 13, 2022 - 4:28:54 PM
likes this

13485 posts since 9/23/2009

You can still get some of the same cool intervals in ADAD too

Jun 13, 2022 - 9:37:27 PM
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23 posts since 9/20/2007

I always use heavy strings...but I play a pretty robust modern instrument...as in not a 100 year old vintage fiddle.
The heavy strings make a big difference in the “sloppiness” of the tuned down G string. It’s actually very playable.
Makes the aforementioned Bonaparte’s and the beautiful Midnight on The Water sound majestic. I have a CD by Benny Thomasson. In the liner notes he says he remembers his uncle and father writing Midnight on The water in DDAD.

Jun 14, 2022 - 9:02:26 AM
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Fiddler

USA

4188 posts since 6/22/2007

Tune down the G string to D. Yes, the string is noodly. In fact, DDad tuning is sometimes called "Floppy D tuning" by old timers.

On another note -  regarding the noodliness of the tuning, it is actually a homage to our Noodly Master, the Flying Spaghetti Monster. He shows Himself in many ways. May you be touched by his noodly appendage. ---RAmen  smiley

Jun 14, 2022 - 10:52:49 AM

5885 posts since 9/26/2008

Definitely tune down and then it takes some practice to manage the floppy, but it is definitely manageable.

I play a number of DDad tunes, all of the ones mentioned plus Whiskey Before Breakfast, Dry and Dusty (two versions), Cruel Willy, Spotted Pony and Washington's March.

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