David Hodge

Since joining Guitar Noise in 1999, David has written over a thousand articles, lessons, interviews and reviews here. He also serves as the site's Managing Editor, supervising all content in addition to the continued writing of his own lessons and articles. And if that wasn't enough to keep him busy, David is also the author of seven instructional books, the most recent being Idiot’s Guide: Guitar Theory.

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  1. Jim Miller
    October 27th, 2012 @ 10:20 am

    Really helpful lesson, thanks!

  2. JA
    May 15th, 2013 @ 1:06 am

    Great article – nice to know you “learned” on a 12 string! Nothing puts hair on your chest like playing a 12 string!

    • E.A. Wright
      June 13th, 2014 @ 12:39 pm

      Believe it or not, JA, not every 12-string player is a man, and some of us don’t want “hair on our chests.”

  3. Ed Bush
    March 20th, 2015 @ 9:47 pm

    Hi, I just got my 12 string and now can’t wait to tune it so I can try it out! Thanks for all the information. Ed

  4. Stephan Bennett
    February 6th, 2016 @ 3:55 pm

    Thank you David.
    I’ve been playing 6 string for years now. Getting my new 12 string on Tuesday. Really enjoyed the lesson.
    Kindest regards.

  5. Mike
    April 22nd, 2016 @ 3:11 am

    I’ve played an Ibanez 12 string for years and knows none of this-to me it was just a guitar with extra strings! Can’t wait to do more with it. Thanks!

  6. Toby
    July 8th, 2016 @ 8:42 am

    Hi David.

    I’m a 6 string player and am very interested in getting a 12 string, but whenever I play around with them at the stores they always sound really thin to me. I’m a fingerstyle player mostly and having problems getting both strings in the courses. Any tips on that?

    • John
      November 22nd, 2016 @ 5:42 pm

      Hi Toby,
      I bought an Ibanez 12 string a few weeks ago for £180, I tried this, an epiphone at a similar price and a Takamine at £250. On paper the Tak should have been the best but sounded thin like you describe, the epiphone was similarly thin sounding but was fitted with 9 gauge strings as opposed to the tens fitted to the others so it may have been down to this. I recalled a friend’s fender 12 string when I was young being the same so I was surprised to get a much fuller warmer sound from the Ibanez.
      The only conclusions I can come to are either that at the cheaper end of the market Ibanez have a better balance or that this is all down to gauge and brand of strings, either way it’s well worth while trying plenty before you buy!
      A softer plectrum helps a little too but not an issue for fingerstyle.
      Incidentally Solsbury Hill although not originally performed on 12 string really does sound good and is a lot of fun if you can get the timing right!

  7. Shoun
    July 9th, 2016 @ 5:34 am

    Me too, I use your way to tune “Honey” (my loved twelve) indeed, so welcome to the Club ;) !!!!
    But now I am intrigued in buying a six string guitar and tuning it with that Nashville “Idea” :)
    What about in installing two Tronical robot tuner on a 12 string guitar? Do you mean it is possible?!

  8. Olivia
    November 19th, 2016 @ 2:50 pm

    Hi thanks for the information about how to use a 12 string guitar

  9. Ray
    January 14th, 2017 @ 6:59 am

    Buying a 12 in a couple of days after 30+ years of using an old faithful 6 string.
    Listening to a mate’s 12-string when we do gigs together reminded me of that orchestral sound, a memory you get from one of your senses reminding you of a certain yesterday. The first thing i’ll be doing is the intro to the Eagles’ “Lying Eyes”… evoking memories of the audience recognising it, and hopefully whooping. Never really exploited it for anything but chord playing, so like to know your views on riffs, brilliantly done by Chicago for instance?

    Keep up great work,

    Peace & joy.

    • David Hodge
      January 14th, 2017 @ 11:54 am

      Hi Ray

      I think that playing riffs on the twelve-string guitar can sound, pardon the pun, absolutely brilliant, especially if the song’s riff uses a lot of open strings or concentrates on the lower strings of the guitar. Songs like “Driver Eight,” “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life),” or “Friend of the Devil” all sound terrific on the twelve-string.

      And playing the twelve-strings also can have other advantages – if you’re a heavy-handed strummer, for example, you’ll have to learn to appreciate playing individual strings and letting them ring as part of your overall rhythm. You quickly learn that playing less fills up a lot of space!


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