Drop B Tuning

drop b tuning While not as popular as other tunings, Drop B tuning has it's strengths. Popularized by heavy metal, this one is sure to help you shred, wail and melt the crowd like molten lava. The darker tone of this particular tuning fits a more ominous passage played with blazing intensity. As with any open tuning, drop b is helpful in getting musicians out of ruts.

Grab some 11 gauge strings, which will keep some string tension and reduce buzz. Next, just tune everything down to B, F#, B, E, G# and C# to start exploring the depths of drop b. Create your own chord grids for this one and discover your own voice. With a little playing, the sweet spots will appear and present tons of sonic opportunities.

Slayer is probably the most recognized heavy metal group to tune their axes to the drop b tuning. It can be also be heard in the heavier music of Slipknot, Rage Against the Machine, Sepultura and Mastodon, to name a few. These lower tuned strings can require a bit of adjustment and a setup may be required. Not every tuning can go this low, but the Line 6 model tuners are known to have a wide range of settings including drop b.

As with any tuning, find your favorite and consider dedicating a separate guitar to it. These lower tunings should stay that way for optimum performance.

by Ben Long

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