Duane Eddy's House of Twang

What tuning/s did Duane use?


What tuning or tunings did Duane use?

Tuned down to...??? and all strings relatively tuned, or just specific strings de-tuned..?


:) Richard Hudson

Am I missing something here Richard?

Is it a trade secret?

& Does Didier know?




I think the secret is there is no secret. Duane plays a baritone on occasion and even a six string bass, I think, on occasion. Duane just has that ability to make a note sound lower than it really is.


Yep. The secret is, you gotta be Duane ;)

Watching him at Guitar Geek a few years ago, on a darn near fresh out of the box 6120. No gimmicks, no funky tunings, just pure Duane Eddy magic.


I read here that Duane tuned up a half-step for "Peter Gunn",but that everything else was done in standard.


Some brands sound 'twangier' than others. I recently put Dean Markley Blue Steel strings on my Falcon and they really TWANG! 8-)


He does carry a second guitar tuned to F for Peter Gunn...makes it a lot easier on the sax player. :) Everything else is, as Bonedaddy says, right outta the box, regular tuning.

As George Harrison once said, "When Duane plays an E, it just sounds so much lower, but it's the same E!"

Some tunes played on the six string bass Danelectro, now they surely are lower, but the tuning is the same.


¨Duane¨ i never try to reach his sound, too complicated, as Deed said it is the feeling he has when he hit the strings, and probably he is gifted with a perfect pitch ear, i have a friend with a perfect pitch ear and he can do whatever he want in pitch question playing his guitar,,, of courses it is a question for Deed; did Duane have a perfect pitch ear??
Dean Markley Blue Steel strings, strange to me Hermitt it was my brand but i changed to D'Addario, jus because i was looking for more twang and less plastic sound IMO perhaps i´m wrong. Until now the best strings that i have loved(and find more twangy) on my Gretsch BZ are the fender 250, got them in pamplona when and where i set up my guitar, now i can´t find them near my town, also i have ear from some sound techs Piramide are the best for Rockabilly and Country twangy sounds but never try them...


I tried the Pyramid Gold strings but I found the Thomastik-Infelds sound much better. I've heard a bit about the LaBella nylon wrapped round wound strings and so I want to try a set of those next.


Thanks hermitt, for your suggestions i take note


Duane does not have perfect pitch, Johnny. He does have excellent relative pitch, which means he will reach over and tune your guitar while he's having a conversation with somebody else!

Perfect pitch is quite rare. A dear friend and brilliant musician, Larry Knechtel, had this. He called it a curse because he heard every mistake and bad note in a recording session, or when he was playing live with a band. But, it came in handy when he would be asked to sit in, he never had to ask, "What key?" ;-)

As to strings, Duane has used GHS Boomers for years. Guages 9 1/2, 11, wound 20, 34, 44, 54


:) Richard Hudson

Am I missing something here Richard?

Is it a trade secret?

& Does Didier know?



– richard brown

:) Richard Hudson

Am I missing something here Richard?

Is it a trade secret?

& Does Didier know?



– ritchie

there's a secret but i keep it secret secret. A Gretsch 6120 with dynasonics or dearmonds, a good amp (fender twin or somthing like that) a little bit of Tremolo, some echo or reverb and the most important : be Duane Eddy. Unfortunately i'm not Duane Eddy.


Wound G? Why not a plain G, Deed? Is the plain G missing something? Is there something that the plain G doesn't have? ;-)


haha, I remember that post, Deed, (obviously) it cracked me up. :D


Re: posts #5, #6 & #8 above --

I saw Duane @ the Geek Fest, & I'm pretty sure I saw him tune the 6th string up 1/2 step (to F) for "Peter Gunn", rather than switching to a different guitar. Am I mistaken?

Either way, the left hand Bigsby action on that tune was worth the price of admission. It must be redundant by now, but thanks so much, DE, for all the beautiful music & inspiration you've given us.


You're right, he only had one guitar at Deke's Geeks. And thank you for the very sweet words.


That was a moment, to be sure. Now that Chet and Earl are no longer with us, it is a keepsake.


It is a keepsake, Deed, for sure. Everyone played just great. Earl did his legendary part. Randy did some dandy bluegrass flatpicking. Vince Gill is just unbelievable. He seemingly can play anything and play the hide off it. Duane made the hair stand up on my arms as usual. Mercifully, I think, they intentionally had Chet's sound down. He was very ill and certainly not up to par with his playing, but what a moment. The sound quality and mix was just perfect. Strong bass. Good. Good. Good. I thoroughly enjoyed it (again).


Yes, Chet was very sick at this time, but he hadn't lost his sense of humor. Rehearsal was pretty darn funny, I have a few photos, but I wish now that I had recorded a bit of video for all the bad jokes.


Thanks for all this stuff and for everything else, Deed. And obviously, thanks to Duane too. It was an absolute pleasure meeting the both of you in Nashville at last year's roundup. I was sitting here reading this thread and was struck by how very fortunate we are here in the Gretsch community.

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