Open Tunings Summary

Open guitar tunings are popular among guitarists for their unique sounds and the ease with which they allow for chord playing. Here’s a list of common open tunings, each named for the chord they produce when strummed open, without fretting:

  1. Open C Tuning: C-G-C-G-C-E
    • Lowers the E strings and A string, while the B string is raised.
  2. Open D Tuning: D-A-D-F#-A-D
    • Also known as “Vestapol” tuning, it involves lowering the E strings, B string, and A string.
  3. Open E Tuning: E-B-E-G#-B-E
    • Also a Vestapol tuning a whole tone higher in pitch than open D, raises the A, D, and G strings up to match the E major chord notes.
  4. Open G Tuning: D-G-D-G-B-D
    • Also known as Spanish tuning, lowers the E strings and A string, creating a G major chord.
  5. Open A Tuning: E-A-E-A-C#-E
    • Also Spanish tuning a whole step higher than G, raises the D, G, and B strings to achieve an A major chord.
  6. Open F Tuning: C-F-C-F-A-C
    • Very low. You may want to change to heavier strings for this one.
  7. DADGAD: D-A-D-G-A-D
    • A modal tuning that isn’t technically an open tuning (since it doesn’t form a major or minor chord when strummed open) but is often included in discussions of open tunings due to its popularity for its distinctive sound.

Each of these tunings can drastically alter the sound of the guitar and facilitate different styles of playing, such as fingerstyle, slide guitar, and folk music. Experimenting with open tunings can be a great way to discover new sounds and inspire creativity.


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