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Paganini Caprice #16, Part 3

Introduction and the first half

Part 1 of Mike's series about the Caprice can be found HERE
Part 2 is located HERE

Due to the many letters I've received asking whether I'll be featuring more of this piece, I've written this lesson in which I will cover Part 3 of the Paganini Caprice #16.

It is a great challenge to take this Caprice apart in sections, to analyze it and practice it. You will notice the use of many techniques in this piece including chromatics, intervals, arpeggios, pedal points and string skipping. All of these areas are great for building your technique and improving your sense of harmony. I added some fingerings were necessary, but use the ones that are most comfortable for you.

To hear a soundfile of Mike playing this part of the Caprice at a slow tempo, click HERE
To hear the fast version of that, click HERE

This whole caprice is based in the Gm scale, except for some accidentals - take a look at bar 1 you will notice the C# leading to D.

Throughout this piece Paganini uses a lot of targeting to chord tones by a half step above and below. Bar 2 is a pedal point line off the high C on the E string which is little tricky to pick accurately, so take your time with this and be sure to alternate pick. There will be many more wide skips to come.

Bar 5 and 6 has a real neat chromatic line that moves down the neck. This is pretty much a trademark of Paganini for the beautiful use of chromatics. Be sure to follow the fingering on this.

In bars 7,8, and 9 we have a series of arpeggios picked twice.

Bar 7 is a Eb major arpeggio, Bar 8 is a Ab major arpeggio and bar 9 is a A Dim 7th arpeggio leading nicely to Bb.

The second half

Bar 10 descends down 3rds in the Gm scale with added passing tones. Bars 11- 14 uses long chromatic scale flurries connecting the scale tones of Gm.

This last section is a great lesson on how to add chromatics to your scales to make them sound more interesting.

Bar 15 uses the interval of a 10th down the scale, for this line you can use hybrid picking, for example use your right hand ring finger to pluck the high strings alternating with the pick on the low strings. It would be great to get this line down using alternate picking also.

Thats it for part 3, be sure to practice this slowly, use a metronome and apply these techniques to your music.

By clicking THIS LINK, you can view a PDF of the complete transcription of this part of the caprice.

Also, on my second instructional video "Creative Speed-building Picking Techniques" (more info) I cover the Paganini Caprice #16 and several other areas to help build your technique and increase your speed.

This article can be read online at http://www.iBreatheMusic.com/article/183
GIT-graduate Mike Campese describes himself as an all-around music performer, session artist and teacher competent in many musical styles, electric, and acoustic. He released three CDs, "Total Freedom", "Full Circle" and "Vibe", played on the "Warmth in The Wilderness" album and released an instructional video for ChopsFromHell. Check out Mike's official website Mikecampese.com. You can listen to soundfiles of Mike's work, including clips of the songs from his newest album "Vibe".

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