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I have read about how the chords on a baritone ukulele differ from those of the first three sizes, and so the regular chords for an ukulele song need to be transposed for a baritone ukulele. But can regular ukulele tab be used for a baritone ukulele, or does tab also need to be transposed for baritone ukulele?

Thank you!

  • some good stuff here: ukuleletricks.com/… – b3ko Jul 17 '18 at 19:02
  • Learn chords instead of (or, at the very least, in addition to) tabs! That solves the problem in both instances. – John Doe Jul 17 '18 at 19:24
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If you are playing a baritone ukulele, then you need to be reading a chart written for the baritone ukulele. If you play a chart written for the other ukulele sizes, it will not sound as intended.

Soprano, concert, and tenor ukuleles are all (normally) tuned the same way, which is different than a baritone uke. When transcribing music from one to the other, there are two differences that need to be addressed.

Soprano, concert, and tenor ukes are tuned to GCEA. Baritone ukes, however, are tuned 5 semitones lower than that, to DGBE. If you put a capo on the 5th fret of your baritone you will have GCEA on your strings; however, it still won't sound the same as a standard uke because of reentrant tuning.

On a standard uke, the top string (G) is tuned at a higher octave than the other strings, meaning that the top string is at a higher pitch than the next two strings. (This is called reentrant tuning.) The baritone strings, however, are tuned with the top string low; the top string is the lowest pitch, and the pitch goes up as you move down to the next string. So even with a capo in place on your baritone uke, any notes you play on the top string will sound an octave lower than they would on a standard ukulele.

That having been said, the relative interval between any two strings is the same whether you are using a standard ukulele or a baritone. As a result, if you try to play a standard chart, it may sound just fine, even if it isn't the same notes as the composer intended.

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Well, I just read that baritone Ukulele uses a DGBE tuning, which is a fourth below the regular tuning GCEA.

So, it depends on what you're playing. If it's possible, you can use the same tab and just play everything 5 frets higher, but I'd say in general it's not viable and you will have to transpose the tab.

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