Aug 5, 2008

Working With Major Arpeggios Pt. 2

The last lesson was a simple definition and demonstration of what an arpeggio is, and how you can very easily construct one from any chord.
If you were not able to check out part 1 of Working with Major Arpeggios, I highly suggest that you do so now, before reading any further.

The thing about arpeggios that most people fail to realize, is that they do not have to include every string on the guitar. They do travel in that fashion across multiple strings, but they can be as tame or complex as you want them to be. As long as an arpeggio includes at least three different notes, it can be claimed as an arpeggio. For a further explanation of this you may be interested in taking a look at the articles that I did on triadic chord structures. That really does explain the most basic comprehension of the construction of a chord.

We were last working on building an arpeggio from scratch out of a simple G Major chord. The last example was extremely simple, and I promised to introduce a simple trick and concept. For some of you this may be a no-brainer, but I promise that the 3rd installment of this series of lessons will be rewarding.

This time, instead of building the arpeggio straight out of the G Major chord structure, we're actually going to build it out of the G Major scale. There are a lot of major modes but for simplicity's sake, we'll start with the core, the major scale itself. If you were to jam over nothing but a G Major chord, you could solo straight out of the G Major scale, and truth be told I do this a lot. It sounds unimaginative, but it is really just the opposite, because its all about what you do with the the notes.

This is where personal creative taste comes into play. Its from here that you can do whatever you like with the G Major scale. I, because of my own musical preferences have chosen to construct this arpeggio out of the 1,st 5th, 9th, 10th and 12th notes of the G Major scale. Consult the below diagram to see what I am talking about.

Click To Enlarge

If we just take the Root, 5th, 9th, 10th and 12th notes, and play them in that order, we get this very pretty arpeggio.

Click To Enlarge

You may want to experiment with taking the G Major scale and picking out notes in that fashion. Let your ears guide you. As long as they are within that scale they should sound good in comparison to the G Major chord. The idea with arpeggios is to learn to build a good relationship between the chord and the scale or mode itself. Play the chord and then either work on this arpeggio or your own.

Stick around, keep practicing and have fun!

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