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Friday, 19 April 2013


An arpeggio is a sequence in which the notes from a chord are played individually rather than strung simultaneously. They are basically broken up chords. The are an essential thing for every guitarist to know. 

You can use arpeggios in solos to make them sound more melodic and interesting. They are useful in both slow and fast solos. You can play them over specific notes and you have to change the arpeggio every time the chord changes. I know that sounds horrible, but you will get used to it. Mastering arpeggios gives you a lot more freedom and opportunities. You should start with a slow blues chord progression and try to use arpeggios over the rhythm backing track. It might seem tricky at first, but once you get the hang of it, you will feel like a boss. 

For example if this is your A major chord: 
You would play it like this although the patterns for arpeggios are different
Examples of solos with use of arpeggios:
  • Master Of Puppets (Metallica)
  • Hangar 18 (Megadeth)
  • Fade To Black (Metallica)
  • For The Love Of God (Steve Vai)
In the fast solos arpeggios are mostly used in sweep picking which is basically playing the notes of an arpeggio in a sweeping motion, but I'll do another article on that. In the meantime look up how cool it sounds.

So here are the arpeggio patterns. 1 is the root, 3 is the third note from the root and so on.

Major: 1 3 5

Minor: 1 b3


Aug: 1 3 #5

Dim: 1 b3 b5

dom7: 1 3 5 b7

Maj7: 1 3 5 7

m7: 1 b3 5 b7

Aug7: 1 3 #5 b7

Dim7: 1 b3 b3 bb7

m/maj7:1 b3 5 7

m7b5: 1 b3 b5 b7

m7#5: 1 b3 #5