CGCGAD Tuning (Guitar Lesson)


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Don Ross

CGCGAD Tuning

Don Ross takes a look at a unique and beautiful tuning, CDCGAD, or in Don's words, the "Fred" tuning, and explores what can be done with it.

Taught by Don Ross in Fingerstyle with Don Ross seriesLength: 14:35Difficulty: 2.5 of 5


Video Subtitles / Captions


Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.


JPKJPK replied on October 25th, 2015

Great lesson and explanation of a cool tuning. I'm thinking this could add a lot of color to just about any song. Thanks.

chas52chas52 replied on March 6th, 2015

astonishingly great teaching and playing Don. you are the best of the best. thank you soooooo much.

jfdpdxjfdpdx replied on February 20th, 2014

At first I thought going through the bother of changing the tunings wouldn't be worth it, but it definitely is. What an eye opener. Great sounds. Excellent lesson set, thank you.

Fingerstyle with Don Ross

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Don Ross, an award-winning, Billboard-topping fingerstyle artist, will teach you everything you need to know to get started in fingerstyle guitar.



Lesson 1

Don Ross Series Introduction

New fingerstyle instructor Don Ross introduces himself, his background, and what you should expect in this series.

Length: 3:54 Difficulty: 0.0 FREE
Lesson 2

Playing Style

Don Ross talks about the way he plays and how he got started in his particular style. He also brushes on right hand technique and thumb pick style.

Length: 14:09 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 3

Finger Assignments

Don Ross takes some time to talk about where he places each right hand finger while playing fingerstyle. This is a great lesson for those who wish to fix old habits, or are just starting out in this wonderful...

Length: 9:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Travis Picking

Don Ross talks about fingerpicking patterns with a focus on Travis Picking. He explains the pattern thoroughly and at a step-by-step pace so that it can be picked up by fingerstyle players of any level.

Length: 22:55 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Travis Picking Part 2

Don Ross dives into Travis Picking once more. This time, he specifically focuses on patterns for chords that have a root note on the fifth string.

Length: 14:10 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 6

Travis Picking Part 3

This time, Don Ross demonstrates Travis patterns with chords that have a root note on the fourth string.

Length: 9:21 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Thumb and Brush

Having thoroughly explored Travis picking, Don Ross now takes some time to talk about the "thumb and brush" technique.

Length: 12:27 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 8

Altered Vs. Open Tunings: Altered

Don Ross takes a couple lessons to talk about altered tunings and open tunings. In this lesson, he takes a closer look at altered tunings.

Length: 8:05 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 9

Altered Vs. Open Tunings: Open

Don Ross now discusses open tunings. Open tunings get their name because the open strings are tuned to a specific chord.

Length: 18:40 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 10

Open G Tuning

Don Ross talks more about open G tuning and how to make it more applicable to your playing by applying the Travis pattern you have already learned.

Length: 13:46 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 11

Open D Tuning

Don Ross talks about open D tuning, how it's similar to open C tuning, and how you can incorporate it into your playing.

Length: 17:44 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 12

Open C Tuning

In this lesson, Don Ross explains open C tuning. As with the G and D tuning lessons, he explains how open C compares to other open tunings, how to tune, and what it can add to your playing.

Length: 26:48 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 13

DADGAD Tuning

Don Ross looks at DADGAD tuning in this lesson. He explores different ways to play, how to tune, and discusses why it has become so popular.

Length: 17:56 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 14

Harmonic DADGAD

Don Ross takes another look at DADGAD and how you can play harmonically in this tuning.

Length: 11:19 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 15

DADGAD and Travis Picking

Don Ross continues his discussion on DADGAD tuning and brings it all together with Travis picking.

Length: 10:58 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 16

DADGAD Chord Voicings

Don Ross takes a final look at DADGAD tuning in this lesson. This time, he explores some great chord voicings that are sure to spice up your playing.

Length: 10:41 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 17

CGCGAD Tuning

Don Ross takes a look at a unique and beautiful tuning, CDCGAD, or in Don's words, the "Fred" tuning, and explores what can be done with it.

Length: 14:35 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 18

Brooke's Waltz Part 1

Don Ross takes a look at the first part of his original song "Brooke's Waltz". This song is in the CGCGAD tuning you learned about in the previous lesson.

Length: 17:44 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 19

Brooke's Waltz Part 2

Don Ross moves on and covers the second portion of his original song "Brooke's Waltz".

Length: 12:05 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 20

Brooke's Waltz Part 3

Don Ross finishes up the trio of lesson on his song "Brooke's Waltz". This time around he talks about the song structure, as well as the funky behind-the-nut vibrato he ends the song with.

Length: 15:43 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 21

Extending Harmony

In this lesson, Don talks about how you can use simple music theory to add colorful extensions to your chords and also create new open tunings. This is a very useful lesson for all guitarists.

Length: 18:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 23

Upright & Locked Position Part 1

Don Ross delves into one of his sweeter melodies - "Upright & Locked Position". In this lesson, he offers a short review on the tuning he uses and teaches the first portion of the tune.

Length: 18:22 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 24

Upright & Locked Position Part 2

Don Ross teaches the B section of his song "Upright & Locked Position".

Length: 8:49 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 25

Upright & Locked Position Part 3

Don Ross returns to his song "Upright & Locked Position" and teaches the C part. He then talks about combining the three major sections of this song, as well as how to end it.

Length: 18:39 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 26

Harmonics Part 1

Harmonics sound awesome, and no player's arsenal is complete without this versatile technique. Don introduces harmonics and talks about playing both natural and artificial variations.

Length: 13:19 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 27

Slap and Brush Harmonics

Don Ross talks about "slap" harmonics and "brush" harmonics and how they can be used.

Length: 8:36 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 28

The Ripple Effect

Don Ross teaches a harmonic technique he calls the "ripple effect". This technique was originally made popular by guitar legend Lenny Breau.

Length: 11:43 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 29

The Ripple Effect Part 2

Don Ross builds on lesson 28 by discussing more ways in which the "ripple effect" can be used.

Length: 9:04 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only

About Don Ross View Full Biography

Don has toured regularly since 1989, across Canada, the USA, a dozen European countries, Japan, Taiwan, China, Australia, Russia and India. He has played with symphony orchestras in Canada and Germany, and collaborated live and on recording with Andy McKee, Canadian singer/guitarist Brooke Miller, & Toronto bassist Jordan O’Connor. He also composes scores for television, radio and film, and does production and recording engineering for a variety of other musicians. In addition to acoustic guitar, Don also plays electric guitar, slide dobro and lapsteel guitar, voice, piano, keyboards, bass guitar and drums.

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