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Old June 4th, 2007, 10:19 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Your favorite Open G folk / country / blues songs?

I have been working some of my favorite songs out in open G so i was wondering what you guys do on acoustic open tuned guitar.

Right now I have some standards

"Run on" (also known as God's Gonna Cut You Down)
"Death Letter"
"Leavin Trunk"
"Grinnin in your face"
"John the Revelater"

They seem to go over really well with my current audience. I am looking to add some more country sounding songs. But I am not familiar with any traditional arrangement songs in Open G. Maybe Bluegrass?

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Old June 5th, 2007, 05:28 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I did "Death Letter" in Open E myself (on a parlor sized acoustic). I also did "John the Revelator" acappela and used my Open G tuned resonator's back as a drum.

The Rolling Stone's "Honky Tonk Women" is in Open G and I often played that fretted with slide only during the chorus... hell, nearly every song on "Exile on Main Street" was in Open G - they had a few Country numbers on that album.

A lot of Banjo licks are easily played in Open G since its nearly the same tuning as a common Banjo tuning (also called Open G).

I'll dig around my old setlists and see what I have. I had 3 guitars set up for an acoustic 3 hour set I did once a week for a while. I had one in Open E, one in Open G, and one in Standard tuning (hey, I had to fill 3 hours HAHA).

I even did Billy Joel's "Piano Man" as an Irish drinking song...
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Old June 5th, 2007, 10:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I actually prefer Open D and E

Yeah, if your in Open G you can pretty much play much fo the Stones post-69catalog - "Happy", "HTW", "Start Me Up", "Street Fighting Man," "Brown Sugar" and so on. Gotta go to Open D for "Prodigal Son."

In Open G - I would list:

"Death Letter Blues" - Son House. I think this was the first open tuning song I learned some 40 years ago. I still love to play it

"Yoyo Blues" - Barbecue Bob. IMHO, although his recording career was pretty short, Bob remains one of the most underrated blues guitar players ever

"I Can't Be Satsifed" - Muddy Waters. This can also be played in Open A

"Love in Vain" - Robert Johnson although I tend to do a very Stones-like version

"Long Haired Doney" (R.L. Burnside)
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Old June 5th, 2007, 05:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Oh man... I realize why keef took off his low E string. Why does it sound so horrible on some things. IE barring chords on Open G...

It just sounds out of place.

Thanks you guys for the suggestions. I am actually kinda having fun taking some standard tuned songs and just playing the chords over Open G. It definitely turns some songs into a whole new thing.
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Old June 5th, 2007, 11:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Old June 5th, 2007, 11:28 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm not very religious but I like to play "Light of the World" in open G.
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Old June 6th, 2007, 02:15 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Oh yeah... "Bad to the Bone" is another open tuned song.

I like messing with a variety of open tunings too. Having to reconfigure your knowledge of where to find notes made it easier for me to get used to Mandolin playing as well as made me a better guitar player.

I'll keep thinking of songs...
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Old June 6th, 2007, 11:18 AM   #8 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=Flashback;836726]Oh man... I realize why keef took off his low E string. Why does it sound so horrible on some things. IE barring chords on Open G...It just sounds out of place./QUOTE]


Big mistake removing the low E though. I love Keef and the "look Ma, no hands" school of open tuning playing is fun but pretty limiting. You lose the ability to incorporate alternating, dead thumb bass patterns or descending bass lines into your playing. Ya can't roll the bass syncopation with your thumb to capture Blind Blake's piano-style of playing without a low E.
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