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Creating Drop D Riffs

    Writing your own riffs with the drop D tuning can be fun and open up new creative ideas. Here I’ve compiled a collection of my own riffs created using drop D tuning. Try coming up with your own!

    1. Tuning to drop d allows you to play one-finger power chords. Just barre your 1st finger on the bottom 3 strings and you’ve got an easy-to-move power chord pattern.

    One-finger power chords are what I used to create the riff below. Turn up the distortion and apply a heavy palm mute to get a heavy sound:

    drop d riff #1

    2. Here’s a riff that sounds best with a clean tone. It can be fingerpicked or you can use a pick. Either way.

    Drop D Riff #2

    3. This is another riff built for distortion.

    Drop D Riff #3

    4. Use a clean tone for this one. Let all of the notes ring out. You should notice the string skipping.

    Drop D Riff

    5. This one sounds best on an acoustic. We’re using all six strings for a nice fat sound.

    drop d

    6. Since we’re letting the notes ring out on this riff, it’s best to go for a clean tone.

    drop d

    7. Power chords+distortion=heavy riffing.

    8. Here’s a little fun with harmonics.

    9. I call this the rolling riff.

    10. Here’s a moving bass line (low notes) with a moving melody (high E string).

    Say, do you want all 10 of the riffs from above in a snazzy PDF file? Here you go: drop-d-riffs PDF