Thursday, September 30, 2010

How to Tune a Guitar - The Easy Way


Many players use their digital tuners as a crutch and never really learn how to tune their instrument without one. What will you do if you misplace your tuner or are handed a guitar and asked to jam along?
Tuning your guitar is a painless process since the invention of digital tuners. However some guitar instructors still prefer to teach their students how to tune a guitar using traditional methods, or rather by ear. It is important to be able to tune a guitar without the use of a tuner. For example, what if you were at a friends house and were asked to jam along on an old acoustic guitar that looked like it hadn't been played, let alone tuned, in a year or more and to make matters worse nobody has a tuner. The following method will show you how to tune a guitar quickly and easily so you can be confident that you are in tune.

Unlike digital tuners that usually only allow you to tune your guitar in standard tuning, learning how to tune a guitar by ear will let you effortlessly match lower tunings which sometimes are desired for a fuller, deeper acoustic sound. To begin you will need to first tune the sixth string to a note played by another guitar, a key on the piano, or the fourth string on a bass guitar. Once the first note is established the rest is a piece of cake.

As you may have guessed your second step is to tune the fifth and adjacent string. You can do so by playing the fifth fret on the sixth string and tuning the fifth string until both pitches sound the same. Do the same for the fourth, third, and first strings. But wait a minute! You forgot... The second string I know. The reason I omitted it above is because in order to tune the second string you will need to play the forth fret on the third string and tune to that pitch.

Let's review how to tune a guitar. Get your starting pitch from another player, instrument, or favorite recording. Tune all other adjacent strings by matching the pitch at the fifth fret on the previously "in tune" string, except for the second string. Remember to use the fourth fret on the third string to get your second string pitch. That's it! Now you know how to tune an acoustic guitar the easy way. Let's jam!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Tips to save yourself some money

So much money and energy is wasted on things we could get for free. If you're into new, shiny things and collecting stuff, this is not for you. But if you want less clutter in your life and want to keep more of your money, then check out the following things you shouldn't be paying for.

Basic Computer Software -- Thinking of purchasing a new computer? Think twice before you fork over the funds for a bunch of extra software. There are some great alternatives to the name brand software programs. The most notable is OpenOffice, the open-source alternative to those other guys. It's completely free and files can be exported in compatible formats.  Visit Openoffice's website

Cell Phone -- The service plan may be expensive, but the phone itself doesn't have to cost a thing. Most major carriers will give you a free phone, even a free smart phone, with a two-year contract.

Water -- Besides the monthly utility bill, there's no reason to shell out $1 for every bottle of water you drink. Bottled water is over-rated anyway. Get over it, and into tap, filters, and reusable water bottles. It's cheaper for you and better for the environment.

 Debt Reduction Help -- Speaking of credit cards, if you're in over your head with credit card help, there are many free sources you can turn to for help with your debt. No one is going to be able to magically wipe away your debts, but there is help out there that will set you up on a debt reduction plan you can handle. Start with a visit to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.  Visit their website here

 Basic Tax Preparation -- If your tax situation isn't that complicated, then you should probably be preparing your own tax return using one of the many free online services. It's now common for e-filing to be free as well with many services. You won't even need a stamp.

Shipping -- If you like to buy online, you probably use coupons to get a percentage off of your purchase. Take your skills to the next level and look for coupons or promotion codes that offer free shipping.  Most sites even have special offers for free shipping if you look hard enough.  If in doubt, visit a site like

DVD Rentals -- Did you know that you can rent DVDs from RedBox locations for $1 a night? And better yet, if you use one of the coupon codes from you can avoid the $1 charge. Free DVD rentals! Most libraries now have free DVD rental as well.

Just some helpful information to help you keep some of that hard earned money in your pocket.  Check back often, as i will be posting more useful/helpful information soon.