I generally play in standard tuning, since I know my way around the fretboard so well. But I will use an alternate tuning if the technique of a tune requires it, or if I want to create a particular sound - like using DADGAD for a Celtic tune.
I have composed and arranged hundreds of tunes over my decades of playing - many using an alternate tuning. Below I have included a partial list of my alternate-tunings titles, and links to publications and CDs where you can find them. Without taking the time to count, I would hazard to estimate that about 1/3 of my private-lesson repertoire (of well over 1,000 tunes) uses an alternate tuning of some sort. Here is a sample list:
|Drake's Passage - D A D G A D (lowest to highest)||CD||Notation|
|Twin Sisters - D A D G A D||Book|
|Be Thou My Vision - D A D G A D||Book|
|Brother James' Air - D A D G A D||Book|
|Ryan Time (Again) - Drop-D: D A D G B E (capo II)||CD|
|How Can I Keep From Singing - Drop-D: D A D G B E||Book|
|Down to the River to Pray - Drop-D: D A D G B E||Book|
|In the Bleak Midwinter - Drop-D: D A D G B E||CD||Book|
|Boogie Woogie Jingle Bells - Drop-D: D A D G B E||CD||Book|
|Shall We Gather At the River - Drop-D: D A D G B E||YouTube|
|Double Drop-D - D A D G B D|
|Strawberry Curl - D A D G B D||CD||Book|
|C-Wahine: C G D G B E|
|The Sweetheart Tree - C-Wahine: C G D G B E||CD||Book|
|Spouting Horn - C-Wahine: C G D G B E||CD||Book|
|Waimea Canyon - C-Wahine: C G D G B E||CD||Book|
|Best of My Love - C G D G B E (Capo II)||(to be released)|
|El Condor Pasa - G-Minor: D G D G B-flat D||Notation|
|Angels We Have Heard on High - G-Wahine: D G D F# B D||Book|
|Silent Night - Open-D: D A D F# A D||CD||Book|
If you're interested in learning more about alternate tunings, be sure to check out my Complete Book of Alternate Tunings book.
We also have an Alternate Tunings Database on this site that is a supplement to the information in the book and has information on tunings used by popular guitarists. If you're interested in learning more about DADGAD tuning, be sure to read my DADGAD article on this website.