Open D Tuning: FREE Ultimate Guide

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Open D Tuning

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Open D Tuning – Guitar

Open D is a gorgeous guitar tuning and an enjoyable alternative to standard. It is similar enough to standard not to break your strings when tuning to it. However, it still produces a unique and characterful sound. 

How Do I Tune My Guitar To Open D?

Standard Tuning would see the strings tuned to E, A, D, G, B, E.

Open D sees the strings tuned to D, A, D, F♯, A, D. 

To get from Standard Tuning to Open D, both of the E strings drop a tone to D. The A and D stay where they are. The G string lowers a semitone to F# and the B string goes up a tone to an A. (If a string breaks, it’ll be this one!)

Most importantly, the best way to achieve an accurate Open Tuning is to use a chromatic guitar tuner. This specific type of guitar tuner shows the notes to the nearest semitone, which is what we need when tuning to an alternative tuning. 

We recommend the Boss TU-3 Chromatic Tuner Pedal. It is an accurate tuner over a wide range, and the super-bright LED meter makes it perfect for any setting. 

Open D Tuning
Open D Tuning

Get the Lowest Price Boss TU-3S Chromatic Tuner Pedal here!


Songs which are in Open D include The Black Crowes – ‘She Talks to Angels’, José González – ‘Heartbeats’, The Doobie Brothers – ‘Slack Key Soquel Rag’, The Allman Brothers Band – ‘Little Martha’, and Bruce Cockburn – ‘Sunwheel Dance’.

Is learning to play the piano more your thing?

Open D Tuning Blues

Open D brings a bright attack to blues music. It gives the player freedom to switch between rhythm playing and slide. 

Open D Slide Guitar

Slide guitar and open tunings go hand in hand when it comes to blues. They allow interchanging from backing to lead easily. This turns the instrument into an even more versatile beast. Open A, G and E are also popular open tunings. 

If you are looking for a new challenge, completely new chords and injecting brand new colour into your lead playing, we thoroughly recommend trying Open D. Blues players and singer-songwriters alike make this tuning sing. 

Lap Steel

Or if you are looking for a new instrument altogether, Open D sounds beautiful on a lap steel.

We recommend checking out the eight-string Vorson Active Lap Steel Guitar.

Open D Tuning
Open D Tuning

Get the Lowest Price Vorson LT-230-8 Active Lap Steel Guitar, 8-String (with Gig Bag) here!

Firstly, the Vorson LT-230-8 is a professional quality 8 String lap steel guitar. Custom design by Vorson’s team of player /luthiers for exceptional performance on stage or in the studio.

Many elite lap steel players prefer the expanded range of an eight-string. Secondly, they allow you to play fuller chords, and more exciting inversions because you have more notes under the bar.

With eight strings you also have a wider range across the strings opening up new variations playing scales, runs, and arpeggios. The LT-230-8 features a 30 fret maple neck and a solid mahogany body with a deeply quilted maple top and matching headstock. The LT-230-8’s expanded range is powered by Vorson’s exclusive VSY-3+ Tone / Active Electronics and EQ coupled to a custom-designed eight-string Master 100 pickup. 


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