How to "guitar-think" when using Meshuggah's 8-string tuning

A word for the wise regarding the Meshuggah's tuning as compared to the factory standard tuning for 8-string guitar.

The image to the right shows the GuitarPro6 tuning panel and the information provided for standard 8-string guitar tuning. What this equates to is a standard 6-string guitar for strings 1 thru 6, then the low B string borrowed from a 7-string; plus the eighth string tuned a perfect fourth lower than the B to F.

All that Meshuggah do is take this standard tuning and drop all the strings down by one semitone (half-step) as would players like Jimi Hendrix, Slash, U2's The Edge, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Nuno Bettencourt with their standard 6-string instruments.

What they DO NOT DO then is rethink the entire fretboard and move all their note names, chords, scales, arpeggios etc. back up one fret to compensate for this one fret down tuning (contrary to GuitarPro6!!!).

GuitarPro6 standard tuning

Factory standard 8-string guitar tuning

String No.

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Note names

E

B

G

D

A

E

B

F

The image below shows C natural over the standard tuned 8-string fretboard.

GuitarPro6 fingerboard showing C natural

Meshuggah's M80M 8-string guitar tuning

Meshuggah tuning

String No.

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

Flat note names

E

B

G

D

A

E

B

F

Sharp note names

D

A

F

C

G

D

A

F

The image below shows C natural over the Meshuggah tuned 8-string fretboard (one fret higher than for standard 8-string tuning).

GuitarPro6 C natural in Meshuggah's 8 string tuning

What Meshuggah do (and all those down tuned 6-string guitarists listed above) is think C natural (as it would be in standard tuning) but the sound heard is actually B natural (see below).

GuitarPro6 B natural in Meshuggah's 8-string tuning

The best way to think about it is to imagine that a standard tuned 8-string guitar has a capo positioned at fret minus one (-1) i.e. behind the nut at imaginary fret -1.


Ibanez M80M - Meshuggah

Ibanez M80m

Ibanez M80M

Marten Hagstrom on the Meshuggah M80M Ibanez 8-string.

Meshuggah - Pigtronix

Meshuggah - Rhythm sound


8 string guitar (F#BEADGBE) factory standard tuning
C natural octave shapes

This issue demontrates the C natural octave shapes for 8-string guitar (F#BEADGBE) factory standard tuning in both the CAGED octaves.........

BAF#GED octaves C natural fretboard

..........and Guitar Pro styles.

GuitarPro6 C natural octaves


YouTube icon

Flash iconGuitar Pro 6 icon

C natural BAF#GED octaves TAB pdf

Flash iconGuitar Pro 6 icon

C natural BAF#GED octaves pdf


Ibanez M80M

Erroneous Manipulation ....Zon Brookes

Contradictions Collapse


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