Open C Minor: CGCgce♭

Open C Minor is very similar to Open C Major — with only one note that differs between them and that is the 1st string. In Open C Minor this note is an E♭ instead of an E. This tuning also has the same intervals between strings as Open G Minor and Open D Minor; meaning many of the chord shapes that work well together will be similar.

These instructions assume that you are starting in Standard Tuning.

Step 1: The 6th String – C

To get the 6th string to a C you need a reference tone. You can use any C on the guitar. Luckily there is one on the 5th string (second thickest string). Fret the 3rd fret of the 5th string and loosen the tuning peg of the the 6th string so that the pitch matches. Because you are lowering it 4 semitones you will have to turn it quite a bit, sometimes a full turn of the peg or more.

Step 2: The 5th String – G

The 5th string is currently an A so you will need to lower it one full tone to a G. Since we started in standard tuning the open 3rd string is a G so this will be your reference tone. Pluck these 2 open strings (5th and 3rd) and loosen the tuning peg of the 5th until the pitches harmonize.

Step 3: The 4th String – C

Since this is a C, you can use the 6th string from step one as a reference tone (the fattest string). Pluck those 2 strings together or alternate between them and loosen the 4th string until it matches the pitch of the 6th string (thickest).

Step 4: The 3rd String – g

Guess what, it’s your lucky day, don’t do anything, it’s already a G since we started in Standard Tuning.

Step 5: The 2nd String – c

This one you will need to raise up (be careful as you are more likely to break a string when you are tightening them). Use the 4th string (now a C) as a reference tone. Pluck 4th string and 2nd string together, tightening the 2nd string tuning peg until the pitches harmonize. You’ll only need to turn the peg a little; about a quarter turn on most guitars.

Step 6: The 1st String – e♭

Fret the 3rd fret of the 2nd string as a reference tone. Pluck them together or alternatively pick each one and loosen the 1st string tuning peg until the pitches match.

String Standard Open C Minor
6 E C
5 A G
4 D C
3 g g
2 b c
1 e e♭