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Thread: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

  1. #1

    Default Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Hi, I'm still new here. I''m on a guitar forum with plenty of music that I like. I find a song I like and select it, opens to chord or tab sheet. I can select between guitar, ukulele or piano. I select ukulele. When I play, it just doesn't sound like the proper tunning or something else is not right. I've tuned my Eastman MD605 to Mandolesson's tuner and my electric tuner both show that it's in tune. I hope someone can explain my next move.

    I should add, I've just tried chords so far.
    I'll add also that I love my exposure to mandolin: the community, music and sound.

    Thanks in advance
    Tim

  2. #2
    Registered User Ranald's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    If I understand this properly, you're choosing U for ukelele on your tuner, and applying it to tuning your mandolin. The mandolin is normally tuned differently than a uke (standard mandolin tuning is: low-high, G-D-A-E). The tuner would then be "looking for" the wrong notes on a mandolin. A violin is tuned the same as a mandolin, so if there's a V on the tuner, that would work. As well, most tuners begin with a C, which I believe refers to C tuning, and this works as well, allowing you to find any note on any string. I hope this helps. If it doesn't, there are much more sophisticated people here -- likely someone who can even tell you how to set up a new tuner . I'm just answering because no one else has yet.
    Robert Johnson's mother, describing blues musicians:
    "I never did have no trouble with him until he got big enough to be round with bigger boys and off from home. Then he used to follow all these harp blowers, mandoleen (sic) and guitar players."
    Lomax, Alan, The Land where The Blues Began, NY: Pantheon, 1993, p.14.

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  4. #3
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Do you mean you're trying to use ukulele chord shapes/fingering on the mandolin? You'd need mandolin chords: https://www.mandolincafe.com/cgi-bin/chords/ch.pl

  5. #4

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    If somehow you have your mandolin tuned in 4ths like a ukulele instead of in 5ths like a mandolin, then it still wouldn't sound the same as a uke. And I can't imagine how on earth you would tune up the low string that high without breaking the strings or the mandolin.

  6. #5

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Ranald View Post
    If I understand this properly, you're choosing U for ukelele on your tuner, and applying it to tuning your mandolin. The mandolin is normally tuned differently than a uke (standard mandolin tuning is: low-high, G-D-A-E). The tuner would then be "looking for" the wrong notes on a mandolin. A violin is tuned the same as a mandolin, so if there's a V on the tuner, that would work. As well, most tuners begin with a C, which I believe refers to C tuning, and this works as well, allowing you to find any note on any string. I hope this helps. If it doesn't, there are much more sophisticated people here -- likely someone who can even tell you how to set up a new tuner . I'm just answering because no one else has yet.
    Thank you very much Ronald. This gives me a place to start to find my mistake. It's education all along the way.
    Tim

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  8. #6

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by sbhikes View Post
    If somehow you have your mandolin tuned in 4ths like a ukulele instead of in 5ths like a mandolin, then it still wouldn't sound the same as a uke. And I can't imagine how on earth you would tune up the low string that high without breaking the strings or the mandolin.
    I don't know enough to respond. I don't understand the: 4ths and 5ths statement, but i'm willing to learn. I've tried two guitar tuners and the mandolin tuner on Mandolessons.com, tunning to G-D-A-E, successfully I thought. The mandolin did tune to those notes, but I was a little worried that the strings might break. I do want to tune to the proper mandolin notes. I do understand the proper notes to be G-D-A-E. The reason ukulele enters the equation is that the site I usually play my guitar on has no mandolin selection. I wanted to play favorite songs on the mandolin as I learn new songs from the mandolin world.

    I hope this helps explain my situation.

    Thanks
    Tim

  9. #7
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Yak51fish View Post
    The reason ukulele enters the equation is that the site I usually play my guitar on has no mandolin selection. I wanted to play favorite songs on the mandolin as I learn new songs from the mandolin world.
    Which site is that? Could you link an example so we can see what you were seeing, please.

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  11. #8
    Registered User Dave Hicks's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Yak51fish View Post
    I don't know enough to respond. I don't understand the: 4ths and 5ths statement, but i'm willing to learn. I've tried two guitar tuners and the mandolin tuner on Mandolessons.com, tunning to G-D-A-E, successfully I thought. The mandolin did tune to those notes, but I was a little worried that the strings might break. I do want to tune to the proper mandolin notes. I do understand the proper notes to be G-D-A-E. The reason ukulele enters the equation is that the site I usually play my guitar on has no mandolin selection. I wanted to play favorite songs on the mandolin as I learn new songs from the mandolin world.

    I hope this helps explain my situation.

    Thanks
    Tim
    Assuming your mando strings are tuned to the right pitches, playing uke chord shapes will not get you the same chord as on a uke. If you play the 1-finger C chord shape that works on a uke, on a mando you get the pitches G D a g (low to high), which is G with a suspended second, which sounds quite different. If you play the uke chord F (2nd fret on the G string, 1st fret on the A string), on a mando you get the notes A D Bb E, which is rather dissonant sounding.

    The Cafe has mando chord charts which will give you the correct formations. https://www.mandolincafe.com/archives/chords.html

    D.H.
    Last edited by Dave Hicks; Sep-20-2020 at 5:02pm.

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  13. #9

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobalt View Post
    Which site is that? Could you link an example so we can see what you were seeing, please.

    I'll work on getting that sight (Ultimate Guitar.com) link and a song

    ultimateguitar.com

    1 new

    ttoby1
    ttoby1 [pro]
    10
    MY TABS
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    PLAYLISTS
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    MESSAGES
    SETTINGS
    MORE VERSIONS
    Ver 1
    15
    Guitar karaoke
    EDIT
    ADD TO PLAYLIST
    FAVORITE
    Cindy chords by Johnny Cash, Nick Cave
    3,791 views, added to favorites 288 times
    Difficulty: novice
    Author Gnorkx [a] 1,298. Last edit on Sep 11, 2016.



    WANT OFFICIAL TAB4Ask UG Guitar Team to make an Official tab for this song.Learn more about Official tabs
    CHORDS

    GUITAR
    UKULELE
    PIANO
    C
    3fr1

    1 of 16

    F
    12

    1 of 14

    G7
    312

    1 of 24

    STRUMMING
    There is no strumming pattern for this song yet. Create and get +5 IQ
    Johnny Cash and Nick Cave
    Unearthed: Redemption Songs (2003)
    ---

    [Verse 1]

    C C
    Well, I wish I was an apple, hangin' on a tree
    C C
    And every time my Cindy passed, take a little bite of me
    F C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you one day


    [Verse 2]

    C C
    Well, Cindy is my honey, the sweetest in the south
    C C
    When we kissed the bees would all swarm around her mouth
    F C
    Oh, get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you someday


    [Verse 3]

    C C
    Well, I wish I had a needle and thread, fine as I could sow
    C C
    I'd sow my Cindy to my side and down the road I'd go
    F C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you one day


    [Verse 4]

    C C
    Well, Cindy got religion, she's had it once before
    C C
    She grabbed my ol' banjo, man, and threw it on the floor
    F C
    Well, get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you one day


    [Instrumental]

    C C / C C / F C / F C G7 C


    [Verse 5]

    C C
    Well, it's apples in the summer time, peaches in the fall
    C C
    If I can't have the gal I want, I won't have none at all
    F C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you one day


    [Verse 6]

    C C
    Cindy hugged and kissed me, she hung her head and cried
    C C
    I swore she was the prettiest thing that ever lived or died
    F C
    Get along home, Cindy, Cindy, get along home
    F C G7 C
    Yeah, get along home, Cindy, Cindy, I'll marry you one day
    C G7 C C G7 C
    I'll marry you one day, I'll marry you one day
    X
    By helping UG you make the world better... and earn IQ
    SUGGEST CORRECTION

    I hope this works. Thanks

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  15. #10

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Hicks View Post
    Assuming your mando strings are tuned to the right pitches, playing uke chord shapes will not get you the same chord as on a uke. If you play the 1-finger C chord shape that works on a uke, on a mando you get the pitches G D a g (low to high), which is G with a suspended second, which sounds quite different. If you play the uke chord F (2nd fret on the G string, 1st fret on the E string), on a mando you get the notes A D Bb E, which is rather dissonant sounding.

    The Cafe has mando chord charts which will give you the correct formations. https://www.mandolincafe.com/archives/chords.html

    D.H.

    I looked at the link Dave. That will be very useful. I think my mando strings are probably correct as I check the tuning on Mandolessons.com and they were good. I know I'm going about this all wrong, so does this mean I just have to convert the guitar cords to the same letter chord in the mandolin chord chart? If it's that sorry for the trouble.

    Tim

  16. #11
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Mandolins are tuned differently than guitar or uke if you have tabs you shouldn use the fingerings but can use the chord name. Most tabs give the name of the chord as well as the fingerings. Get a source for mandolin chord fingerings and use those. For an example, an A major chord on guitar may show a tab of both E strings and the A string being open and the D, G, and B strings being fretted at the second fret. A mandolin tab for A major could have the G and D strings fretted at the second fret, the A string fretted at the fourth fret and the E string open. Use the chord name, like A major, from the tab but the mandolin fingering. Hope that helps

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  18. #12
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    If I understand your dilemma correctly, yes you just need to use mandolin chord shapes to play each as shown on your music site. If the guitar chord is "G" then you use a mandolin "G" chord shape on your mandolin, a simple version would be to hold the first string (the thinnest string) down at the 3rd fret while also holding the next string up ( the second string from the floor as you normally hold the mandolin) down at the second fret. Strum all of the strings, and you have a mandolin "G" chord. Reference your chord chard for the "C" and "D" chord shapes, and you will be surprised how many songs you can play.
    Richard

    Eastman 305 mandolin
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    Pisgah 12" banjo

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  20. #13

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Nevin View Post
    Mandolins are tuned differently than guitar or uke if you have tabs you shouldn use the fingerings but can use the chord name. Most tabs give the name of the chord as well as the fingerings. Get a source for mandolin chord fingerings and use those. For an example, an A major chord on guitar may show a tab of both E strings and the A string being open and the D, G, and B strings being fretted at the second fret. A mandolin tab for A major could have the G and D strings fretted at the second fret, the A string fretted at the fourth fret and the E string open. Use the chord name, like A major, from the tab but the mandolin fingering. Hope that helps

    Yes, thank you very much Nevin. I was just looking in a second window side by side with your response and can see that. Thanks you for the help.

    Tim

  21. #14

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Pappyrich View Post
    If I understand your dilemma correctly, yes you just need to use mandolin chord shapes to play each as shown on your music site. If the guitar chord is "G" then you use a mandolin "G" chord shape on your mandolin, a simple version would be to hold the first string (the thinnest string) down at the 3rd fret while also holding the next string up ( the second string from the floor as you normally hold the mandolin) down at the second fret. Strum all of the strings, and you have a mandolin "G" chord. Reference your chord chard for the "C" and "D" chord shapes, and you will be surprised how many songs you can play.
    Thank you Pappyrich. Seems like my mind is wired to make things difficult some times. I think I'll be good from here. I'm interested to see how some of these tunes sound on the mandolin.

    Thanks to all
    Tim

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  23. #15
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Yak51fish View Post

    ultimateguitar.com

    Cindy chords by Johnny Cash, Nick Cave
    I'm sure we already got to the bottom of this one. I looked at that page, these were the chords:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	cindy_chords.png 
Views:	16 
Size:	19.6 KB 
ID:	188674
    If you already play guitar or one of the other instruments, that could help, but the fingering won't match mandolin.
    What you might do instead is look for a more mandolin-oriented resource such as this:


    Though it's worth remembering that mandolin need not just play chords, there are other possibilities. Same song:

    Naturally there is some learning involved in getting to that style, but everything is just a gradual step-by-step process. It takes time and practice.

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  25. #16

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    The Learn/Listen section on this website has loads of mandolin chords. So if, for example, you needed G, C and D chords to play a song, just look up the relevant chord shapes and learn them,
    . Then you’re good to go.

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  27. #17

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Thanks Cobalt, I appreciate the help. I'll check these out.

    Tim

  28. #18

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny60 View Post
    The Learn/Listen section on this website has loads of mandolin chords. So if, for example, you needed G, C and D chords to play a song, just look up the relevant chord shapes and learn them,
    . Then you’re good to go.

    Thanks Johnny60!
    Tim

  29. #19

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Cobalt View Post
    I'm sure we already got to the bottom of this one. I looked at that page, these were the chords:
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	cindy_chords.png 
Views:	16 
Size:	19.6 KB 
ID:	188674
    If you already play guitar or one of the other instruments, that could help, but the fingering won't match mandolin.
    What you might do instead is look for a more mandolin-oriented resource such as this:


    Though it's worth remembering that mandolin need not just play chords, there are other possibilities. Same song:


    Naturally there is some learning involved in getting to that style, but everything is just a gradual step-by-step process. It takes time and practice.

    Looks easy enough, I'll give that a whirl!
    Thanks Tim

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  31. #20
    Registered User Cobalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Yak51fish View Post
    Looks easy enough, I'll give that a whirl!
    Thanks Tim
    The first of those should be manageable. There is also a follow up in the same series,
    Beginner Mandolin Lessons Series (Part Six): Your First Tune (Cindy)


    The other video I posted (previously) is a bit more advanced. I wouldn't want to mislead you, I shared it mostly as a possible inspiration rather than as something to try right away.

  32. #21

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Anyone else notice that Yak51fish has 20 as his (or her) post total, and it doesn’t increase with each new post?
    Maybe updates happen over days?

  33. #22

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon DS View Post
    Anyone else notice that Yak51fish has 20 as his (or her) post total, and it doesn’t increase with each new post?
    Maybe updates happen over days?
    Check all yours. They are all the same too till you make another comment then they all update.

  34. #23

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Yes, mine do update, but I see all of Yak’s posted comments on this page as ‘20’.
    Ah, forget it, no problem, it’s not important.

  35. #24
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Yak51fish, get yourself a ukulele. They are inexpensive, and you can play ukulele fingerings on them.
    Technique, theory and fun, fun, fun. I love playing, studying and sharing MUSIC.
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  37. #25

    Default Re: Ukulele Chords Played on Mandolin: Something is Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Gunter View Post
    Yak51fish, get yourself a ukulele. They are inexpensive, and you can play ukulele fingerings on them.
    You make a lot of sense Mark. It's always been hard for me to make the sensible choice. I hope I'm not over the reply limit.

    Thanks for being there.
    Tim

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