Tom Bukovac's 'naughty triad' guitar chords allow you to create the illusion of opening tunings in standard

Tom Bukovac
(Image credit: Tom Bukovac / YouTube )

Tom Bukovac (aka Uncle Larry) is our favourite guitarist on YouTube – seriously. We won't rest until every guitarist is subscribed to his channel and Homeskoolin' series – probably the best thing to come out of lockdown. 

The Nashville session master is a natural on camera because he's not trying to prove anything; he's just himself. He loves sharing his endless enthusiasm for music and insight on gear, playing and great musicianship – and his interviews with fellow pros are also unmissable. This little chord lesson at the end of his recent video on his YouTube channel is too; it's all about "naughty triads".

These kinds of three-note chords are all about low voicings – and Tom notes that they often fool people. "That the stuff you do and everyone says, 'Hey Larry, what tuning are you in?' because they're not used to hearing those sounds on a guitar. You can create open tuning sounds by getting a little naughty like that." We've bookmarked the relevant part above for you to follow with your guitar. 

Simple chords in standard that make you think differently  – we'd never have thought of this approach. Which is why Tom's insight is so valuable – check out more of his great videos on YouTube

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar. I've currently set aside any pipe dreams of getting anywhere with my own songs and I am enjoying playing covers in function bands.