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does this bother anybody else?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by remainthesame, Nov 22, 2013.

  1. remainthesame


    Sep 24, 2008
    Before I start off, I'm NOT a virtuoso by any means. I am NOT an expert on everything music related. I am NOT a know it all.

    But I can't tell you how many times somebody has told me they use a drop tuning when they are using a standard tuning. Ill get an audition, and Ill be given a few songs to learn. when I ask for the tuning they say "drop C" (just for example) so ill tune my bass to drop C and learn the songs. Then I show up to the audition and everything is completely off because they are actually in C standard.

    Again, I'm not an expert. And I know that people make mistakes. But this is becoming such a regular thing that I had to make a post about it. does anybody else go though this? How do you usually handle it?
  2. DrSteve


    Dec 22, 2008
    S. Jersey
    I don't drop anything. I play in the recorded key or the one we need to change to for the frontman. Guitar player drop tunes all over the place, so much so that we have to arrange sets around his changing guitars for a drop tune. Crazy.
  3. DiabolicLow B

    DiabolicLow B Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2009
    Ontario, Canada
    For the vast majority of songs I don't see the need for any drop tuning, I find it easier to transpose to the needed key.
  4. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    /\ /\ /\ This.
  5. Bloodhammer

    Bloodhammer Twinkle Twinkle Black Star

    Jul 7, 2009
    Shreveport, Louisiana
    That's one of the beauties of having a five string. I had this one guy in a stoner/doom project scratching his head as to why I wouldn't tune to drop D flat like he and the other guitarist were tuned. My response was that I didn't have to.

    EDITED FOR CLARITY: The guitarists in question were tuned to E flat standard, but with their sixth strings in D flat, so it was technically a "drop tuning".
  6. groooooove

    groooooove Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Long Island, NY
    i love how in drop tuning, you become a transposing instrument..

    but the people who do it (in my experience, literally) never give a straight answer when you ask what key they're in or what chord that is or what is top note of that chord or whatever else

    if your going to do it, be able to understand what your concert pitch is!
  7. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Phillipsburg, NJ
    Yep! go 5 string if you're getting a bunch of the Drop tuning gigs. I'm lucky to get by with a 4 string now but played 5 string for 5 years straight. My guitarist had 5 guitars on stage all tuned differently and he used them all. He was able to watch my left hand and get in the right key every time. He had little notes on the set list as to which guitar to use for each song. In some ways he was the best guitarist I ever played with.
  8. ^^This^^

    I play bass. In the genres that I play, I play notes; not chords. I have yet to find a need to change my tuning to anything other than standard. With 5 strings, 24 frets, and 12 notes to chose from--if I can't find the right note to play, it doesn't exist.
  9. skwee


    Apr 2, 2010
    There's only one 'dropped' tuning I'd ever consider, and that is to drop my E string down to a D for an occasional song. Otherwise, I play the agreed-upon key in standard tuning.
  10. Fat Steve

    Fat Steve The poodle bites, the poodle chews it.

    I drop tune to D for two songs in one of the bands I play in. It's a 4 string P, so it just sounds better detuned. I used to detune my DB on the spot for those two songs, but that got tiring so I just double with the P Bass now.
  11. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    Yes, it drives me nuts too. I can't tell you how many times someone has come onto this very site asking about Drop this or Drop that, only to find out that they're not talking about a Drop tuning at all.

    They seem to think that since they are "dropping" their tuning (down tuning) it's a Drop tuning.
  12. I am far too lazy to deal with drop tunings and screwing up the symmetry of my bass, as in being able to play the same pattern the exact same way anywhere on the neck. I do play in D standard though, something I picked up in my last band with my 4 string and carried over to my 6. I just like the feeling of the lower tension mostly.
  13. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    I do mostly originals so I won't drop tune. I also won't change key just because the front man can't sing it. My philosophy is either do it in the original key so people hear the song the way they are used to hearing it or don't play it at all.
  14. I had a hipshot d tuner on my 4 string which worked very well. I play predominantly a 5 string now and stay in standard. I have all the notes I need. Although, certain fingerings are easier when downtuned 1/2 step, for example.
  15. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    I was in an originals group where one of the guitarists kept his instrument in drop-D. Shockingly, EVERY song idea he had turned out to be in the key of D...
  16. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    so if you want to play in F# you'll have to retune his guitar and he will play the same thing just in another key ...
  17. Tupac


    May 5, 2011
    That doesn't always work, and usually sounds a lot worse.
  18. Febs

    Febs Supporting Member

    May 7, 2007
    Philadelphia, PA
    As long as you learned how to play the song correctly, why would it throw anything off if you are in drop C and they are in C standard?
  19. remainthesame


    Sep 24, 2008
    it throws me off because IMO a musician should know what tuning they are in, its a very basic and fundamental thing. if you have progressed to the point where youre rocking a peavey 5150, you should know what tuning you are in.

    if this was just some kid at guitar center i would have just shrugged it off. but this happens to me quite often in a world of "serious" musicians
  20. Clef_de_fa


    Dec 25, 2011
    Yeah I don,t get it too ... if the OP did learn the song and you play the right thing at the right time ... does-it really matter in which tuning you're in ?

    I could do a cover of Fade To Black by Metallica and tune my bass AEBF#C# and play it correctly exacly like the recording but my tuning may turn thing way more difficult that it should be but still I can play it anyway ...

    also many so called pro don,t what they are doing anyway