02010-04-05 | Uncategorized | 2 comments

Mark Says: April 5th, 2010 at 07:16
Hey Ottmar,
I am changing my guitar strings soon. I remember you saying you use one different type of string for one of the trings. Can you tell me what strings you use and the tuning?
Thank you

Sure, Mark. I use the three basses from the EJ45C Composites Normal Tension set and the T2 Titanium Normal Singles for the trebles. From the website:

D’Addario T2 Titanium Guitar Strings are crafted from a dense monofilament material that has an attractive, translucent purple hue. T2 strings have a polished, smooth feel analogous to nylon, but with a slightly brighter tone and increased projection. As a result, the T2 Titanium Treble Strings may be substituted for current guitar strings with little player acclimatization.Designed for the classical guitarist, D’Addario T2 strings will appeal greatly to flamenco, folk and other “non-classical” musicians, as well.

No titanium in the strings… somebody apparently thought that titanium sounds modern and strong, or maybe they used a dart-board when naming the string… And if you haven’t used the composites, here is what D’Addario says about them:

Pro-Arte Composites are constructed using an exclusive multifilament stranded core material which dramtically improves the life and tuning consistency of the wound strings. Like all ProArte strings, the trebles are sorted by a sophisticated computer-controlled laser machine which performs diameter/tension measurements and quality checks to insure precise intonation. Composite sets feature an additional high-projection Composite 3rd string, which provides more tonal flexibility and balanced volume transition between the basses and trebles.

I have used the EJ45C set for a long time, for a decade or more, and never liked the third string in that set. I think the Titanium trebles are better and compliment the EJ45Cs very well. This string combination of Composite basses and Titanium trebles was used on “One Guitar” “Up Close”, “The Scent of Light” and the new album.

I use the normal guitar tuning. Eine Alte Dumme Gans Hat Eier or E-A-D-G-H-E – that’s how I learned to remember the tuning, when I was twelve. In German the notes between A and C are B and H – in English they are called B-flat and B. That’s how Johann Sebastian was able to play his name and compose pieces around the figure of B-A-C-H, or Bb-A-C-B in English.


  1. Adam Solomon

    Interesting – I like the D’Addario EJ45Cs too, but when I’m mixing and matching I usually go *just* for the G string :) It’s got a very percussive, very flamenco sound, I think. Depends what you’re using it for. I’ve been learning a piece of Paco’s recently where in one falseta the muddiness of the G I’m using now (an EJ45, not composite) is actually pretty bothersome.

    In Gödel, Escher, Bach, Douglas Hofstadter notes that Bach died while writing a fugue with the B-A-C-H theme. In keeping with the theme of the book, he suggests that Bach dropped dead because he had finally achieved full self-awareness and stopped functioning due to a sort of pseudo-Gödelian neurological paradox……

  2. Mark

    Thanks so much Ottmar. I hope to see you in VA or MD this year. I sure wish you could come to Virginia Beach sometime.


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