PHIL HILBORNE’S ONE-MINUTE LICK
NON-DIATONIC ARPEGGIO IDEA
There are often situations in music when you are not playing over any chords at all – just a single pedal bass note. This particularly applies to a bass, drums, guitar lineup. When this occurs – or also when you are composing – you don’t have to slavishly follow strict harmonic guidelines, rules and schemes. This month’s lick is a great example of this. Here I have harmonised E Natural minor (E-F#-G-AB-C-D), but with every note as a major chord as opposed to the more usual Em-F#dim-G-Am-Bm-C-D ‘diatonic’ scheme. This is an interesting sound, and keyboardists like Keith Emerson use similar ideas. It works well because you can still hear a logical progression of arpeggios. I have used a mixture of ‘mini sweeps’, legato and slides – all the fingering and picking directions are given. However, feel free to experiment with your own chosen articulations and don’t forget to compose other similar ideas of your own invention using as much variety in terms of scale choice, rhythms and techniques as you can think of. Bear in mind that some scales will not work so well using this approach – but you can have a lot of fun experimenting.