Double Dropped-D: Lesson 1

Difficulty: Easy | Guitar used: Crafter D6 | Tuning: Double dropped-D

The Standard guitar tuning of EADGBE lends itself perfectly to the popular keys of E and A but there is no point in limiting your playing by sticking with this! In the first of my lessons I’m going to introduce the simplest of the alternative tunings, double dropped-D.

Tune the 6th string down 1 step to D and then the 1st string down to D. This will give you three open D notes. From low to high the tuning will be DADGBD. The bottom three strings give you an open D power chord (DAD) just like the common drop-D tuning you’re probably already familiar with. The top three strings give you an open G major chord (GBD) with the root on the 4th string. This is a great tuning for blues and slide guitar and in this first lesson we are going to jump straight in with this simple boogie riff  using all of the open D strings.

Example # 1

|-------0-------0-|-------0-----------|
|-----------------|-------------------|
|-----------------|-------------------|
|---0-------0-----|---0-----0h3-0---0-|
|-----------------|---------------3---|
|-0---0---0---0---|-0---0-------------|

With your strumming hand, use you thumb for the 6th string and first finger for the 4th string, with your fourth or pinky for the 1st string. Let us now expand on this simple riff by adding some chords.

Example # 2

  D5                                    G5  D5
|---------0---------0-|---------0----------|-0------|
|-----3---------3-----|-----3--------------|-3------|
|-----2h4-------2h4---|-----2h4------------|-2------|
|---0---------0-------|---0-----------0-5--|-0------|
|---------------------|-----------0h3---5--|-0------|
|-0---------0---------|-0---------------5--|-0------|

Make sure you let each note ring out, especially with the hammer-on from the second to the fourth fret. With your fretting hand, play the D5 chord with your first and second fingers then hammer-on to the fourth fret using your third finger- keeping the chord shape held down. I’ll be coming back to this in a future lesson but for now that concludes our first look at double dropped-D tuning.

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