May 09, 2016

How to play "A Horse With No Name" on your guitar

Q:  Is the correct tuning DEDGBD?

GB: Yeah, It’s virtually the only song
you’ll hear with this tuning, because
Dewey and Dan and I were always just
messing around. The low E goes down
to D, the A goes all the way down to E,
and then it’s D G B and the high E goes
down to D. So, the weird element there
is the A coming all the way down to E,
but Dewey frets both E strings at the
second fret, and he frets the D string at
the second fret, so you’ve got this E E E
G B E kind of drone-y [sound]. It’s that
slapping A string that’s taken down a
fourth that really is part of the signature

Q:  Dewey, how did you come up with
the tuning?

DB: We’d been listening to Joni Mitchell
a lot and David Crosby at that point. I
mean, it can’t be underplayed that we
were at that point digesting every note
of every new release of everything. Now
we’re into ’68, ’69, ’70 and we were
huge fans of Crosby, Still & Nash and
Buffalo Springfield. Even the first two
Led Zeppelin albums, we loved the
acoustic guitars... I remember specifi-
cally playing this chord and going, that
A string isn’t sounding right, and I just
started turning the key until I got it down
to another E, and I just formed a chord.



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