Creative Shred Ideas 02. Arpeggios

I will teach you ways to change up your arpeggios and also a couple new arpeggios that I use in my own playing.

Creative Shred Ideas 02. Arpeggios
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Hey dudes and dudettes. In this lesson I will teach you ways to mix up your arpeggios using different techniques. I will also give you a couple new arpeggios that I use in my own playing and songs. The arpeggios used in this lesson will contain string skipping, sweeping, and tapping. Let's get right into it. First, I will give a very basic 4-string E minor arpeggio. Here is the pattern: Ex. 1
   D  D  D  D  U     U  U  U  
e|---------12-15p12----------|
B|------12----------12-------|
G|---12----------------12----|
D|14----------------------14-|
A|---------------------------|
E|---------------------------|
That is the basic pattern. Now, you could go up and down this arpeggio, but if you are like me, you might have trouble sweeping this pattern. I personally can't go up this arpeggio very well so I have switched some notes around to play this same arpeggio. The way I play this pattern is with string skipping. Here is the way I play it: Ex. 2
e|---------12-15p12----------|
B|---------------------------|
G|---12h16----------16p12----|
D|14----------------------14-|
A|---------------------------|
E|---------------------------|
Ok. Whenever you come across anything you might not be able to play normally just try and switch around the notes or the position. It might be easier to play. It's basic knowledge, but it can really open up the fretboard for you. Another way you could play this is with computer tapping. I haven't covered computer tapping yet, but the technique is when you tap with multiple fingers on your right hand. I call it computer tapping because I picked up the term from Paul Wardingham. Usually you perform it with just two fingers on your right hand. I will note the taps with a "T". Just try to tap with your ring and you middle fingers. Find an order of the taps that is most comfortable with you. Here is the pattern with computer tapping: Ex. 3
e|------------15-------------|
B|---------17--T-17----------|
G|---12-16--T-----T-16-12----|
D|14-----T-----------T----14-|
A|---------------------------|
E|---------------------------|
I personally recommend that you first tap with your middle finger, then your ring finger, then your middle again. Then just play the same notes with the same fingers. I love doing computer tapping. It is extremely fun. Now I will show you a very basic 3-string E minor sweep. Here is the pattern: Ex. 4
   D  D  D  U     U  U  
e|------15-19p15-------|
B|---17----------17----|
G|16----------------16-|
D|---------------------|
A|---------------------|
E|---------------------|
There is the pattern. Now, by adding just one note we can get an entirely different sound. We're going to add a C note across two octaves. Our new sweep is also going to include a barre. Here is our new arpeggio: Ex. 5
   D     D  D  U        D  U  U     
e|---------15-19h20p19-15----------|
B|------17----------------17-------|
G|16h17----------------------17p16-|
D|---------------------------------|
A|---------------------------------|
E|---------------------------------|
You should try experimenting with adding notes and changing the position of anything that you play. It will open up an entire huge door for you. Now, I will show you two of my favorite arpeggios. The first arpeggio is called a D sus2 arpeggio. It is the coolest arpeggio I've ever come across. I love the sound. We're going to play it with sweep picking. Here is the arpeggio: Ex. 6
   D  D  D  D  U     U  U  U  
e|---------14-19p14----------|
B|------17----------17-------|
G|---16----------------16----|
D|14----------------------14-|
A|---------------------------|
E|---------------------------|
I love that sound! It's amazing to me. The next arpeggio is a string skipping/tapping lick. It sounds dark and diminished. Here is the pattern: Ex. 7
e|---------12h13h16p13p12----------|
B|----------------T----------------|
G|12h13h16----------------16p13p12-|
D|-------T-----------------T-------|
A|---------------------------------|
E|---------------------------------|
There you have it, guys. Make sure you get the idea of adding notes and changing positions and techniques. Also try using those new arpeggios in your own playing. Music is all about expression. That's why I stay away from theory. I study it and I love learning it, but theres something about just going crazy on the guitar that theory can't teach you. Find your own individual voice and your world will open up right before your eyes. In the last lesson in this series I will show ways to combine these ideas and give you a section of my song "Sheathe", which encompasses cool licks and arpeggios. It has different techniques and sounds really great in my opinion. 'Till the next time, see ya. Oops. Also don't forget to check out my song on my profile page. I also came across Satrianifan281's take on "Surfing With The Alien". It's really great. Check it out. Ok. See you guys later.

7 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    Satrianifan281
    Another great lesson, I'm definitely going to try and use some of these techniques, especially that first one. Also, thanks a ton for mentioning my "Surfing With The Alien" cover.
    rak411
    bravo, nothing that has not yet been written before, but you did well putting it together, great stuff to put on here for people who need it keep em coming!!
    Carl_Berg
    Very good lesson. I also use string skipping when some sweeps are too difficult to get out perfect.
    JB95
    Even though you might use multiple fingers on your right hand to do computer tapping, the name comes from the odd sound of big intervals that happens to be achieved by tapping. I wouldn't consider Ex. 3 to be a example of computer tapping too, but it's still a fun exercise.