DADGAD Tuning is a popular alternative to standard notation. It is tuned by taking your guitar in standard tuning and dropping the 1st, 2nd, and 6th string a whole step down. You can do this by following these steps in order.
- Match the note on the 7th fret of the 6th string with an open 5th string
- Match your open 2nd string with the 2nd fret of the 3rd string
- Match your 1st string with the 5th fret of the 2nd string
This is a great tuning for acoustic songs. It is really good for old hymns and fingerpicking acoustic solos. To get you started on DADGAD, try my DADGAD arrangement of Amazing Grace. I suggest that you use what you learned in the Drop 2 Voicings lesson to come up with some chord charts. After that you can arrange your own songs in DADGAD. I know that not all of the Drop 2 chords will be usable due to the nature of the tuning but it will get you started with some chords. I have included a diagram of the DADGAD fretboard and some of my favorite DADGAD chords.
Many songs written in DADGAD use a lot of 2 note chords and open strings. I suggest that you try using chords like the 2 note chords when you constuct your own songs. To play a 2 note major chord, play the root and the 3rd. To play a minor chord, play the root and the flat 3rd. To play a dominant 7th chord, play the Root and the flat 7th.
Very cool, thanks for the clear explanations and an informative post. I’ll try to practice this the next time I pick up my guitar. Cheers!
just got interested in the dadgad tuning. thanks for the introduction
What is the time signature or is it played freely. Also your standard tuning drop 2 chord explanation is unparalleled on the web. Great lesson.
I play this freely. Thank you for the very kind words about my drop-2 lesson.