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Quels sont les spécifications de l’accordage Ukulélé ?

Posté par MyMusicTeacher en décembre 20, 2016 dans Entretien Pas de commentaire

Le Ukulélé, à l’instar de la guitare, est bel est bien un instrument à part entière. Ne serait-ce
que par ses propriétés physique qui le distingue du Guitarlélé, le Ukulélé va nécessiter un
accordage différent. Quels sont les spécificités de cet accordage et comment s’accorder au
mieux ? C’est ce que nous allons voir tout de suite dans notre étude sur l’accordage Ukulélé !

L’accordage Ukulélé standard et ses spécificités

Avant d’accorder son Ukulélé, il faut savoir de quel type il s’agit. Les Ukulélés les plus
communs sont le Soprano et le Ténor. Chacun d’eux ont leurs 4 cordes accordées, de la plus
grosse à la plus fine, sur Sol (G), Do (C), Mi (E) et La (A). Ce schéma, synthétisé GCEA est
aussi appelé High G. Il existe un accordage parallèle, dit Low G, qui consiste à diminuer la
corde de Sol d’une octave par rapport au GCEA standard. La corde de sol alors utilisé devra
avoir un tirant plus élevé. Petit rappel : on compte les cordes de 1 à 4 en commençant par la
plus fine.

Accorder son Ukulélé à l’oreille avec un La de référence

Il est possible d’accorder son Ukulélé afin qu’il soit jouable même si vous n’avez pas de La
de référence. Évidemment, à moins que vous ayez l’oreille absolue, l’accordage ne sera pas
réellement un High/Low G. Si par contre, vous avez un La de référence, alors c’est très
simple !

Le système d’accordage Ukulélé GCEA.

La 1ère corde (la plus fine) est un La. Il vous suffit alors d’écouter le son du La de référence
et de tourner la clé d’accordage de la 1ère corde jusqu’à ce que les sons se superposent. On
retrouve ce type de La dans la tonalité d’un téléphone fixe, ou avec la vibration d’un
diapason standard 440Hz.

Une fois la 1ère corde (de La) accordée. On passe à la deuxième corde, le Mi (E). Il faut cette
fois placer son doigt sur la 5ème frette et jouer les deux cordes en même temps. Le but est de
tendre ou détendre la corde afin que la note en 5ème case, 2ème corde soit la même que celle
de la 1ère corde (La) à vide.

La 2ème corde (de Mi) maintenant accordé, on passe à la 3ème corde : le Do (C).  Il faut
placer son doigt sur la 4ème frette de la 3ème corde et la jouer en parallèle avec la 2ème corde
à vide. Tendre ou détendre jusqu’à ce que le son de la 4ème case, 3ème corde soit identique à
celui de la 2ème corde à vide.

Enfin, passons à la 4ème corde, le Sol. Dans un accordage ukulélé High G, on va placer son
doigt sur la 2ème case et la jouer en même temps que la 1ère corde (que l’on a précédemment
accordé en La). Tendre ou détendre jusqu’à ce que la 4ème corde, 2ème case sonne de la
même façon que la 1ère corde à vide.

Pour un accordage Low G, la 4ème corde, 2ème case, doit sonner un octave en
dessous de la 1ère corde à vide. Soit beaucoup plus grave !

The different types of Ukulele Tunings

Ukulele For Dummies

By Alistair Wood

Ukulele tunings have changed over time, and plenty of variety still exists, with different
players using different tunings for their ukuleles. The note a string plays (known as its pitch)
depends on three things, two of which you set before starting to play to select the tuning:

 How tight the string is: The tighter the string, the higher the note, and the looser the
string, the lower the note.
 How thick the string is: The thinner the string, the higher the note.

 How long the string is: The shorter the string, the higher the note. You take
advantage of varying the string length when you start playing: holding down a string
against the fretboard makes it shorter and, therefore, higher in pitch.

Ukulele tunings are identified starting with the string at the top (nearest your head when
holding the uke) and moving downwards to the bottom string, farthest away and nearest the
floor. Keep in mind that the ukulele’s strings are ‘inside out’ in that the two thinnest, highest-
pitched strings are the outside strings (and are very close in pitch) and the fattest, lowest-
pitched strings are the two inside ones. (Most string instruments arrange their strings from
fattest at the top — nearest to the player’s head — to thinnest at the bottom.)

Ukulele tunings by instrument type

There are traditionally four standard types of the ukulele, with each variation of the
instrument having its own tuning and alternate tunings. The ukulele types are typically based
on the size (length) of the instrument:

 Soprano – 21 inches
 Concert – 23 inches
 Tenor – 26 inches
 Baritone – 29 inches

See the popular tuning of the standard ukulele types below:

Ukulele Tunings
Ukulele Type Common Tuning s
Soprano G4–C4–E4–A4 A4–D4–F♯4–B4
Concert G4–C4–E4–A4 G3–C4–E4–A4
G4–C4–E4–A4 D4–G3–B3–E4
Tenor
G3–C4–E4–A4 D3–G3–B3–E4
Baritone D3–G3–B3–E4 C3–G3–B3–E4

The most common ukulele tuning: gCEA

Although the groups of letters that identify types of ukulele tuning may look complicated,
they simply indicate the pitch to which each string is tuned. For example, gCEA tuning means
that the string nearest to you (the fourth string) is tuned to a high g note (when writing about
uke tuning, lower-case indicates a high g as opposed to a lower-sounding G-string). The next
string down (the third string) is tuned to C, the second to E and the first string (farthest away
from you) is tuned to A.

Ukulele
gCEA Tuning.

This method of tuning, with the high notes as the two outside strings of the instrument, is
known as re-entrant tuning. When you’re indicating re-entrant tuning, use a lower-case ‘g’ to
make clear that you’re using this tuning.

The gCEA tuning is the most popular ukulele tuning nowadays. Using this tuning makes
learning to play the uke much easier because you can readily find chord charts and notation
for gCEA tuning. And because it’s so common, you can communicate with other ukulele
players clearly.

This tuning also makes playing in the key of C very easy, which is useful because C is the
most commonly used key.

aDF#B tuning was very popular in the 1920s and 1930s. If you find any old sheet music with
ukulele chord diagrams, you may well see this tuning, in which each string is tuned two frets
higher than gCEA. Therefore, the chord shapes you use for this tuning are the same as gCEA
but the chord sounds higher.

An advantage of this tuning is that it is easier to play chords that are common on the guitar –
most notably E – allowing you to play along with guitar songs with less hassle. It can also
make your ukulele sound brighter.

If you buy a set of strings with aDF#B on them, don’t panic. Very little difference exists
between these strings and those used for gCEA, and either type of strings can be used for
either tuning.

When you’ve got a handle on the common gCEA tuning, you can experiment with less-
orthodox tunings. Playing certain songs can be easier in a different tuning, and some tunings
offer notes and inversions that aren’t accessible in gCEA tuning. Also, if you’re playing with
other ukers, having a different tuning gives you greater variety in the sound, making the music
more interesting to listen to.

Using a low-G tuning for your ukulele

In a low-G tuning, you replace the high, thin g-string by a low, fat G-string. All the other
notes stay the same, so its tuning is GCEA. The chords you play are exactly the same as
gCEA (high-G tuning) but give you quite a different sound to the traditional ukulele tuning.

If you want to try this tuning, you need to buy a low-G set of strings. If you try to tune down a
standard string, it becomes too floppy to play.

Tuning Your Ukulele to Low G


by Brett McQueen

For some of my video lessons on Ukulele Tricks, my tenor ukulele is tuned to low G tuning,
sometimes referred to as linear tuning. This means, while you and I can play along together
using the same chord positions, the overall sound comes across as slightly different.
In standard ukulele tuning, the top g-string of the ukulele is tuned higher than the middle two
strings of the ukulele. More specifically, the top g-string is tuned to the “G” note above
middle-C on a piano (learn more about standard ukulele tuning).

In low G tuning, all of the strings stay tuned the same except the top g-string is tuned down an
octave to the “G” note below middle-C, as shown in the following figures:

Low G tuning represented on the piano

Low G tuning represented on the music staff

By tuning the top g-string down an octave, you add five additional notes to the bottom of the
ukulele’s range of pitch. This produces a fuller, deeper sound to the ukulele.

Often times, people prefer the low G tuning on a tenor sized ukulele versus a soprano or
concert sized (read more about ukulele sizes). You can see why a lot of ukulele players have
more than one ukulele! This allows them to tune each ukulele to a different tuning.
Please note that if you want to tune your ukulele to low G
tuning, you need a special low G string set for your ukulele. If you try to tune the g-string
of a regular ukulele string set down an octave, you will find that the string doesn’t hold
tension very well and doesn’t stay in tune. To remedy this, you need a thicker, wound low G-
string.

Whenever I tune my ukulele to low G, I like to use Aquila’s low G string set. You can buy a
pack online depending if you have a soprano , concert , or tenor sized ukulele (links take you
to product pages on Amazon for Aquila low G strings).

To tune up your low G string set, use a chromatic tuner (I recommend it), or use the “low G”
setting on my free ukulele tuner tool.

If you run into any problems tuning your ukulele to low G, just post your comment below! I’d
love to help.

All About My Tenor Ukulele


by Brett McQueen

I’ve been receiving a lot of questions through email and comments here on the site asking
what type of ukulele I have and how it is tuned. My ukulele has quite a bit of meaning to me,
so I thought it’d be cool to make an entire post all about my ukulele, the story behind it, how I
tune it, and all that.

Where I Got My Ukulele From

In 2009, I was a music intern at a church in Detroit, MI, called Kensington. Kensington is
quite different than what you’d probably expect from a church. They do a lot of different
types of songs including a lot songs you’d probably even hear on the radio. All to say, for a
Christmas service, we were doing an original tune an artist in our community had written and
we needed a ukulele.

One of our friends that goes to Kensington, M. J. Franks, is a luthier out of Detroit, MI. No
doubt that this guy is making some of the best sounding guitars out there today. The level of
detail and craftsmanship Mike puts into his guitars is unbelievable. Needless to say, we
needed a ukulele, and Mike had been starting to make ukuleles, so he put together one for us
in a couple days.
When my internship came to a close, everyone I worked closely with on staff autographed the
back and gave it to me as a going away gift. These folks have become some of my really good
friends to this date. In this way, my ukulele is a great reminder for me of the community of
friends I have to this day in Michigan.

What Size of Ukulele I Have

My ukulele is considered a tenor ukulele. The most common type of ukulele is probably the
soprano or the concert ukulele. These ukulele sizes are smaller than a tenor and are known for
a brighter and more jangly sound that people often associate with ukuleles.

Tenor ukuleles have a warmer and sometimes deeper sound because of the bigger body style.
The frets are sometimes spaced farther apart and there are usually more frets on the fretboard
compared to a soprano or concert ukulele. This is nice if you want to play higher up on the
neck to reach higher notes. People with larger fingers or hands might find tenor ukes slightly
easier to play. Read more about ukulele sizes.

How I Tune My Ukulele

A lot of people who’ve watched my ukulele videos have asked me why my ukulele sounds
different than theirs. This is because I am in a low G tuning.

Standard ukulele tuning is gCEA where the lowercase “g” represents the top string tuned to
the G above middle C. For my ukulele, rather than tuning to the G above middle C, I tune to
the G below middle C. GCEA tuning is known as linear tuning.

I like this tuning because it gives my ukulele a broader range. I can play lower notes and get
some of the warmth that comes from the bass of these lower notes. I’m also a ukulele player
that has come over from playing guitar where the strings are tuned lowest to highest (linear
tuning). For fingerpicking stuff, like my rendition of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” it makes
more sense in my head with a low G tuning.

Typically, most people will have a low G tuning on a tenor or concert ukulele. Soprano
ukuleles aren’t really made for it and baritone ukes are tuned completely different (DGBE).

For my low G tuning, I do have a steel wound low G string. Most normal ukulele strings are
nylon. This wound string gives me a bit more tension on the string. Sometimes when you try
to tune to low G your G string will become too loose to hold a good tune. I’ve found that a
wound string helps with this.

You can get string sets that include a wound low G string. I know the popular ukulele string
maker Aquila makes some which are pretty good.

Overall, I loooove my tenor ukulele and I really like using a low G tuning. However, I will
say this. I really want to get a concert or soprano uke here in the near future. With my low G
tenor uke, I miss the bright sound that you can only get with a soprano or concert uke.
So, there you have it. If you have any questions or if I miss anything, let me know below.

I’m excited to hear what type of ukuleles you all are playing these days. It seems like
every ukulele has some type of story behind it that I’ve known of. What kind of ukulele do
you have? Why do you (or don’t you) like it? Go ahead. Post your comment below!

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