PHIL HILBORNE’S ONE-MINUTE LICK

NON-DI­A­TONIC ARPEG­GIO IDEA

Guitar Techniques - - INTRO -

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.

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