iBreatheMusic.com Online Music Lessons
  The Pulse - iBreatheMusic's official newsletter
Online Articles: 188
Article Browser
Forum Members 26,182
Join Us - Take Part
Pulse Subscribers 2046
The Pulse Archive

Improvisation Tools - Part 2: Arpeggios

More Patterns and Exercises


Repeat the above exercises with this position


Repeat the above exercises with this position


Repeat the above exercises with this position


Repeat the above exercises with this position

Ideas & Exercises

We have already spent some time with our 5 different arpeggio fingerings. Up to now we have played them more or less up and down. Here are some examples of "breaking up" the patterns (for a detailed explanation of the exercises below refer to my article about the Pentatonic).

All examples are shown using the Cmaj7 pattern in 5th position (#2 from above).

4 - Note Sequence

3 - note Sequence

In "3rds"

Second Drill & Exercises

1) We repeat the first exercise from above. Use the circle of fifth. The only difference is that we do not move the patterns around on the neck, instead we try to stay as close as possible in positions. Play the major7 voicing followed by the arpeggio.

2) With this exercise we try to create a continuous ascending and descending line by changing from one pattern to another. In the example below I switch between Cmaj7 and Gmaj7. Try to connect the two different fingerings as smoothly as possible.

  • Try the above exercise by starting on every individual chord tone of the Cmaj7 Arpeggio.
  • Try this exercise with different maj7 chords and/or use the circle of fifth.


All right. We have learnt 5 fingerings for the maj7 arpeggio, done some drills and applied technical exercises. Two patterns had the lowest root on the low E string, two on the A string and one on the D string. I owe you an explanation why these are the main 5 patterns. If we take a look at the entire guitar neck and project all 5 Cmaj7 patterns on it, we see that these 5 patterns contain all Chord tones that are spread over the neck. Furthermore you see where common tones of neighboring patterns are.

Cmaj7 on the neck

You can include another pattern into the above neck diagram that incorporates open strings . Move the pattern that starts on the 12th fret (in the black circle) down by one octave.

Minor and Dom 7 Arpeggios >>