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ARPEGGIOS EXPLAINED

 

An arpeggio is simply the notes of a chord played separately. You don't strum the notes like you would a chord. You play them the same way you would play a scale, as separate and distinct notes.

A chord is technically not a chord unless it has at least three notes in it. The 1st, 3rd and 5th notes of any given scale are what comprise a chord.

These three note chords are known as triads.

A triad can have altered 3rds and 5ths such as the 3rd being lowered (flatted or b) to create a minor triad or the 5th being raised (sharped or #) to create an augmented triad.

You can also replace the 3rd with the 2nd or 4th degree of the scale to create suspended 2nd (sus2) and suspended 4th (sus4) triads.

So, in executing these arpeggios on guitar, we'll simply play successive triads that span a total of three octaves in range.

Once you learn the foundation of sweep picking these arpeggios, you'll recognize the variations that can be applied to them. We build that foundation starting with one note per string except the first. We'll play three notes (two unique) on it for continuity.

For example, the sequence of notes in the first arpeggio presented in this clinic are:
Starting on the 6th string; E G# B E G# B E and back down B G# E B G# E.

Arpeggios have neck patterns just like everything else on the guitar. You'll need to memorize these patterns in order to be able to play them at the drop of a hat!

 

 

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