Here we are in the final installment of my sweep picking series! It’s been an exciting journey from ground level to where we are now: Sweep Picking 502. In this last edition, I’m going to illustrate how to cover an entire octave of arpeggios, incorporating all the passing tones along the way.
We’ll utilize the key of D major with all its trimmings, and implement the diminished arpeggio over all the passing tones. This will give us a long passage of sweeping arpeggios, testing our knowledge and stamina as we move across the fretboard. Each diminished arpeggio creates a tension that resolves to each tone in the major key. Applying this melodic idea is very interesting to the listener, and illustrates some uses of the ever versatile diminished concept. There are three forms of the diminished arpeggio, and in this study I use two of them. You'll see the diminished 7th (1-b3-b5-bb7) throughout most of the lesson, and I incorporate the half diminished arpeggio (1-b3-b5-b7) over the 7th tone (c#m7b5), as it lends itself to a smoother resolution to the tonic D.
Click to download audio example.
We’ve covered the sweep picking technique in this series from bottom to top, discussing the beginnings of developing the ability to sweep pick, common forms used, linking these forms together, and some unorthodox shapes as well. I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey as I much as I have enjoyed teaching it. Remember, perseverance is crucial in developing a good, clean, sweep picking ability. Accuracy and precision are everything, so focus on these concepts first, and over time if speed is what you’re after that’ll come too. Thanks for logging on and tuning in and I’ll see you next time here in Lethal Guitar.