Guitarist Cameron Mizell

New York Guitarist & Composer

The website of New York Guitarist Cameron Mizell.

Lick of the Week 21: July 22

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[dropcaps_dark] L [/dropcaps_dark] ast week got a bit crazy and I wasn't able to make any videos, so here's a lick for last week, and I'll post this week's in a few days.

This week we'll have some more fun with a lick loaded with goodies: harmonic minor modes, arpeggios, odd phrasing, sweep picking... what more could you ask for?

This altered dominant lick uses four 5-note arpeggio patterns that overlay 16th notes, which creates a cool offset phrase on top of a standard 4/4 meter. In other words, each arpeggio does not start on the downbeat, so when played in time it sounds a lot more complicated.

The notes come from the harmonic minor scale. Each arpeggio uses chord tones 73157, and start on the notes of the dominant chord (with a b9).

So in this example, we have a D harmonic minor scale, and the arpeggios are:

Fmaj7(#5) : E-F-A-C#-E A7 : G-A-C#-E-G Bbdim7 : Bb-C#-E-G-Bb Dmin(maj7) : C#-D-F-A-C#

If you haven't figured it out, you'd play this over an A7(b9) resolving on a D minor.

Note the sweep picking pattern as well. The second note of the D string is a hammer on, but the rest of the notes are picked. All downstrokes except for the fifth note of the pattern, which gets an upstroke to send your pick back down towards the D string to start again.

If you've enjoyed the last few months of Lick of the Week, please see my other guitar and mandolin lessons on this blog. I am also available for private guitar and mandolin lessons in NYC or via Skype.

If you're viewing this from a mobile device, click here to see the video and here to see the notation.