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April 12th, 2021

I had read that some bluegrass musicians tune their guitar strings to DADF#AD because it makes playing that style of music easier. But what does it sound like? This is the sound of each string being plucked and then an "open drop" strum, with no frets held down. It was synthesized using the program 'sox'.

If you have a UNIX machine (GNU/Linux, Apple MacOS) with sox installed, you can recreate the sound by running these commands:

sox -n pluck.wav synth pluck D2 pluck A2 pluck D3 pluck F#3 pluck A3 pluck D4 \
delay 0 .5 1 1.5 2 2.5 remix - fade h 0 5 1 norm -1

sox -n strum.wav synth pluck D2 pluck A2 pluck D3 pluck F#3 pluck A3 pluck D4 \
delay 0 .05 .1 .15 .2 .25 remix - fade h 0 4 .1 norm -1

sox pluck.wav strum.wav opendrop-bluegrass.wav

play opendrop-bluegrass.wav

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(1)
Type
Wave (.wav)
Duration
00:09:000
Filesize
1.6 MB
Samplerate
48000.0 Hz
Bitdepth
32 bit
Channels
Mono
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