'B' Minor/'D' Major Diatonic Exercise

Check out this cool exercise to incorporate diatonic arpeggios into your lead playing!

Ultimate Guitar
Many people think "Hey there's Chris Zoupa that 1/2 Greek 1/2 Sri-Lankan metal head!" which is kinda true. But I'm also a lover of Jazz and am fascinated by it. Even though we're both contributors on this wonderful website and community, I'm a massive Jens Larsen fan. I was messing around with one of Jens' exercises/ideas working through diatonic arpeggios and I came up with a jazzy progression in "B" minor/"D" major.

The chord progression is:

By playing through this chord progression you can hear very predictable diatonic intervals moving up the scale. To get the most out of the chords I decided to include 7ths so that the majority of our arpeggios will have at least 4 notes.

This simple concept is a cool way to highlight the sweet spots of a chord moving through a progression. You'll notice the 2nd, 4th and 6th bar have a longer arpeggio and a slightly less predictable shape than the usual 7th arpeggios as I've added an extra note and a descend. I think it's always worth experimenting with new shapes and adding in a few extra notes into your arpeggios. You might consider adding in 4ths, 6ths, 9ths, 11ths and if you're feeing sassy 13ths to get a more unique sound.

Enjoy the exercise guys! Happy Shredding!

Download tab here.

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By Chris Zoupa

21 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Your videos inspire me to practice again. I'm finishing up on learning the Symphony of Destruction solo. I just gotta get the last part up to speed and clean up the rest. This is a great exercise btw
    "B" minor/"D" major" What? lol Just because the progression starts on a 6 chord it doesn't mean that it's in a minor key.
    *face palm* What's wrong with referring to it as B minor/D major? I can understand that you'd most likely consider it D major since it ends on a DMaj7, but it can certainly be both, and when he's using a pretty even split between your 'major' chords (I, V, IV) and 'minor chords (iii, ii, vi) (not including the voicings here. So don't get on my ass), and the melody follows the chord choices closely, I would say it's up to the listener. Plus, the fact that it does start on the VIm7, does have some merit (since the melody begins there as well).
    I don't see why people are downvoting thid comment. There is a difference between D major and B minor. One is major and resolves to D. One is minor and resolves to B. They just happen to share the same notes. As you cannot have a situation where a key is both major and minor, and resolves to both D and B, it is not correct to refer to a progression as being in D major/B minor. However there may be situstions where a song may start in one key and change to the other.
    Chris Zoupa
    This is that situation. Oh and they're down voting that comment because ever since they got wifi installed near the bridge he guards, Deadds has been trolling this site all willy nilly.
    I don' think that there is a key change in your progression. I think it's all in D major. Even if there is a key change, it is pretty uncommon to notate the key as "D major/B minor". I understand that you feel Deadds is trolling your articles but it seems to be a valid point that is being raised in this specific comment.
    If I play the melody I actually hear it more in B minor, and never moving. Mostly because the strongest bars of the song have Bm, Em, A7and Bm and the last line resolves sounding like B harmonic minor over F#7 to Bm. The Dmaj7 chord at the end just sounds a bit out of place. That's how I hear it at least.
    I don't think the last chord sounds out of place. But I do think it sounds kind of minor-ish. Especaily the Em7-F#m7-Gmaj7 part sounds more minor to me. The beginning also sounds like minor to me. But the ending is more major sounding. It's kind of the same as Fly Me to the Moon. I would say it starts in minor but the way it ends sounds more major. I don't really hear a key change but I don't think that it's in only one of the two keys (yeah, I know, sounds a bit stupid). But maybe the way it ends makes the key D major. Because to me the D major chord in the end sounds like tonic. You need to take all chords into account.
    My knowledge in music theory may not be enough, so I don't understand what are the notes you're playing? Just 1st, 3th, 5th and 7th of the chords?
    I'm glad I subsribed to your YouTube channel. Been playing for 20 years and still learning
    This exercise reminds me of Al Di Meola's arpeggio studies in one of his books. Thanks for bringing it up.
    Do you use Guitar-Pro for your tab/note examples? I ask because over that Gm(Maj7)chord you're going to want to label A# as Bb and there is no key signature even though the F and C's are implied sharp.
    Chris Zoupa
    Yep I use GP there's a text box! I didn't know it existed till I saw some of Jens' lessons.
    Immediately to the left of the text button there's the chord button which makes the chord name bigger and bolder than the text if you feel like messing with that as well.
    Nice lesson, thank you. However, I tried downloading the tab and the link took me to the "Beat It" guitar solo. For that, thanks, but no thanks