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> Picking & Hammering Arpeggios
Ben Higgins
post Feb 5 2015, 04:13 PM
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With the appearance of my latest lesson, I thought it might be a good time to look at other ways in which we can play arpeggios. Much of the time, people will actually refer to arpeggio sequences as sweeps. 'Nice sweeps, man !' The sweeping is the technique used to play the arpeggios but the name of the technique used has become the most important thing, rather than what is being played.

Sweeping is a great technique and, once you've learned it, will open up more possibilities for any player. But let's not forget that arpeggios themselves are not just vehicles for sweeping, they are musical tools which can be played in other ways. Nuno Bettencourt is a great example of someone who approaches them in his own way. I've included a cheeky reference to one of his most famous solo passages from the song 'Play With Me'. In the original, he runs through a classical sounding section. In my latest lesson referenced above, I've done something similar and in order to play it, it uses a combination of picking, legato and string skipping. No sweeping in sight.

Check out Nuno's chops from 1:09 onward. Pretty damn sweep.. I mean, sweet, right ? cool.gif



Not only is there no sweeping but instead of just running straight up and down through a shape, as much sweep sequences do, it steps up gradually by returning to the previous interval and going higher again.

You may also recognise this approach as appearing earlier in the form of one certain PG.

Attached Image

No, not Parental Guidance but Mr. Paul Gilbert.



Now, approaching arpeggios like this does mean that there's no specific sweeping code to follow. You'll have to decide how many notes you want to pick and just when to use hammer-ons / pull-offs and whatnot. But I do believe that doing these things will encourage you to start thinking of arpeggios in a more musical and more unique way. Marty Friedman agrees.........



At the very, very least... picking a few shapes and alternate picking them up and down will give you a brilliant warm up and work out.

So, whether you're a sweep fanatic or not, you've got options for when you want to whip out some arpeggios. Remember... it's music not sport !


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Caelumamittendum
post Feb 6 2015, 06:28 PM
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You made me think (again and more) about Michael Romeo's soloing. He does some cool tapping and arpeggios for sure.


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Ben Higgins
post Feb 6 2015, 07:05 PM
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QUOTE (Caelumamittendum @ Feb 6 2015, 05:28 PM) *
You made me think (again and more) about Michael Romeo's soloing. He does some cool tapping and arpeggios for sure.


Yes, that's another brilliant approach to arpeggios !!


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Caelumamittendum
post Feb 6 2015, 07:12 PM
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QUOTE (Ben Higgins @ Feb 6 2015, 08:05 PM) *
Yes, that's another brilliant approach to arpeggios !!


Oh, and there's piece this from Rick Graham, which I'd like to learn:



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