The 10 Best Guitar Tunings for Beginners

You’ll probably start studying chords and scales in standard tuning when you start playing the guitar. Standard tuning is the most common tuning, with your guitar strings tuned to E, A, D, G, B, and E (from lowest to highest). Although most guitarists learn and perform standard tuning, different tunings bring up a whole new universe of sound.

By simply re-tuning your guitar, you may discover a world of music. Here’s a rundown of some wonderful open and alternate tunings – some well-known, some less so – along with a handful of guitar tunings for beginners to get you started as well as some suggestions about places to hear them recorded.

Drop D

This is the most common alternative tuning in many popular music genres, particularly rock and metal, and it’s also the easiest to learn from standard tuning. Simply drop your low E string one complete step (two frets) to D, matching the pitch of your open fourth string, or middle D,’ which is one octave lower.

Drop C

Drop C tuning derives its name from the fact that it requires you to “drop” your low E string to C. Drop C tuning, on the other hand, needs you to lower all six strings of your guitar, as opposed to Drop D tuning, which only requires you to lower one string: C-G-C-F-A-D

Drop C tuning is comparable to Drop D in that the chords and fingerings are the same, but the sound is lower and more bottom-heavy. Drop C tuning may be heard in a variety of genres, although it’s most popular in metal and hard rock. “My Curse” by Killswitch Engage and “Happy Song” by Bring Me the Horizon are two songs that employ Drop C tuning.

Open G

Guitarists must tune their strings to the notes that make up a G chord: G, B, and D in open G tuning. To play Open G tuning, tune your strings as follows (from lowest to highest): D-G-D-G-B-D

Open G is frequently used by blues, folk, and classic rock musicians. Keith Richards, one of the most well-known open G players, utilized it in several iconic Rolling Stones riffs, including “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking” and “Street Fighting Man.”


Open G and DADGAD are extremely close. Simply return the fifth string to A and the B string to A for this tuning. This tuning allows for some pretty cool modal music to emerge.

You may play folk music, such as Paul Simon’s “Scarborough Fair” and “Armistice Day,” rock music, such as Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir,” or even nu-metal, such as Slipknot’s “Circle.” Playing change notes up and down the G string while strumming all the open strings is a fun and simple thing to perform with this tune. For the moving note, the other five strings form a drone.

Open C

There’s no denying that open C is a fantastic slide tune, but there’s more to it than that.

If you remove the slide and replace it with a capo, you’ll find some fascinating fingerpicking and harmonics, as well as ringing notes that can produce a layered drone effect to broaden your sound.

It has the potential to convert you to open-tuning right away. With its varied attractions, it undoubtedly drew in Ben Howard and John Butler.

Open A

Open A tuning (low to high, E A E A C# E) is to open G what open E tuning is to open D – the same thing a full step higher and, for many musicians, its electric-guitar equivalent.

Open A tuning produces a voicing that is similar to a first-position A chord in standard tuning, with the D, G, and B strings all elevated a whole step to E, A, and C#, respectively.

Hopefully, this collection of other tunings, as well as the artists and songs mentioned above, have provided you with some valuable pointers and creative inspiration to experiment with twisting your guitar’s tuning pegs to these unusual settings.


Most Popular

Join Music Pandit’s Music Program