Dating a gibson 4 string tenor acoustic guitar
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Domenic : Due to the overwhelming amount of comments on this blog i cannot answer all the questions although id love to .
The violin, viola and cello all have four strings each, whereas mandolin family instruments have eight strings in four pairs or 'courses' that are each tuned to the same note, usually in unison but sometimes an octave apart, similar to what is seen in the tuning of the various pairs of strings on the twelve string guitar, the two highest of which are unison and the four lower of which are octaves apart.
A mandolin, like a violin, is tuned to the highest pitch, to GDAE, a mandola, like a viola, is tuned lower to CGDA, (which is exactly the same tuning as the tenor banjo and guitar) and a cello, like a mando-cello, is also tuned to CGDA but exactly one octave below the mandola CGDA tuning.
The use of this tuning, however, is not restricted to this style of music.
The tuning in fifths also means that the tenor guitar, and it's cousin the tenor banjo, are similar to the violin and mandolin families of instruments, mandolin, violin, mandola, viola, mando-cello and cello, and they can all be played with the same chord shapes.