The Lap steel guitar is not tuned in standard guitar tuning (E-A-D-G-B-E, low to high). Rather, it is usually tuned to an open chord, often an extended chord like a 6th, 7th, or 9th.
All tunings are shown low-to-high; that is, thickest string to thinnest, or 6th string to 1st string.
Blues and Rock players tend to favor one of two tuning families: open G/open A, or open D/open E.
Open G is tuned D-G-D-G-B-D;
Open A raises each of those notes a whole-step (2 frets) to E-A-E-A-C#-E. During the 1920s and 1930s, much of the sheet music written for lap steel utilized open A tuning as the de facto standard tuning for the instrument.
Open D is tuned D-A-D-F#-A-D
Open E is a whole-step higher: E-B-E-G#-B-E.
C6th tuning is also common. High C6 tuning: A-C-E-G-A-C-E-G. Low C6 tuning either G-A-C-E-G-A-C-E or F-A-C-E-G-A-C-E.
There are many other tunings, but these are the most common.
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