Among the many things I'll never be able to repay my mom for were the (literally) thousands of hours she spent teaching me piano. I learned my scales and my keys, how to pick notes and chords out by ear, and to enjoy performing far more than practicing. Fast-forward to my post-college malaise and I used all that musical training to teach myself just enough guitar to start using that ear training and learn some covers. Since I played most everything by ear, I had to learn all the chord shapes; since I was lazy, I only wanted to learn them once... so alternate tunings were not part of my repertoire. It wasn't until years later that I learned to appreciate the amazingly rich palette of colors that someone like [Peter Mulvey](http://www.petermulvey.com/latest/) paints with and I figured it was time to expand my musical vocabulary and mess with my strings. Still, I hazily remember being drawn to [DADFAD](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Open_D_tuning) largely because I wanted to minimize my level of effort in this endeavor, and the open chords and harmonics sure sounded great even when my fingers weren't on the fretboard. That didn't help much when my songwriter compass pointed me to a minor chord to start the chorus to Good In Bed, of course, so I learned the shapes for minor chords, dominant sevenths, and a handful of things I still can't reach in standard tuning. I'm still married to EADGBE, but it's fun to get out of town, like I did last week in Dallas at the always-stellar [Opening Bell](http://www.openingbellcoffee.com/), and see DADFAD on the side, like I did in the video above.
Subscribe to Erick Rudiak. Songwriter. Human.
Get the latest posts delivered right to your inbox