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Ramtin

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Reply with quote  #1 
Sorry if it's dumb and amateurish ( ops: ) but is it possible to tune a sitar to D#!?
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OM GUY

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Reply with quote  #2 
Um... pardon my question, but why would you want to?

C is kind of bland IMHO, and D is like playing on a cheese grater for me, while C# is the middle of the road and usually sounds best, although that's highly debatable. It would seem to me that playing in D# would be akin to walking a tight rope on your bare feet over a very deep canyon on a piano wire.

And lastly, while it may be possible to tune to D#, I doubt many sitars could take it for very long, even if the other strings wouldn't have already gone boing and hit you inna eye!

About your " dumb and amateurish" qualifying statement, very few here are professional sitar players, as in very few are making a living at it. The rest of us are doing our amateur clawing and scratching thing, avoiding dumb as much as possible! But, like the host says, "there are no stupid questions!" Amen to that.

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Hamletsghost

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hey om guy

Try tuning to E to play Norwegian Wood correctly with a friends band.
It's that or down to b#. I find the b# setup to be just a little boomy the way I play it live.
Start with a short alap of the aroha and avaroha of the basic scale of the piece then acoustic kicks right into melody.
We follow the end with a quick acoustic guitar sitar duo of Khamaj .... Sounds great.

I've only done this a handful of times and it works either way but I prefer the E tuning.
That being said I detuned the instrument the moment I got off stage.

The point is no matter what the purpose of alternate tunings they work just as fine on sitar as it does for guitar. The player MUST keep in mind the limits of the instrument and in the case of alternates one should never leave their instrument tuned up that high. It would also be wise of the alternate user to, like me, try the lower road also. Loose or lock out a bass string perhaps to avoid the aforementioned boominess, BUT, there is nothing wrong with experimentation. Woe to us if George hadn't tried a few different tunings. :wink:

Then there's that cheese grater. You think D's bad try that E YOWSAH :mrgreen:

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CheesecakeTomek

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Reply with quote  #4 
One of my teachers keeps her sitar tuned to D quarter sharp all the time, beautiful old Hiren Roy. I personally don't like going that high, but as long as you have good strings it should be fine.
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barend

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Reply with quote  #5 
I use D on one of my sitars but I use a lighter main string which works very well. If you play with western musicians you have to because they mostly don't like to play in C#.

Only downside is that with tuning in D you have slightly less meend range.
D# will be too much or you have to use lighter strings.
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Ramtin

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Reply with quote  #6 
Thanks everyone for the replies. I'll try tuning to D# just to see how the sitar sounds. I have to change the strings anyway so it doesn't matter if they break!
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