Welcome to episode 2, if you missed episode 1 you can check it out here. In this part we will be combining string skipping with some tapping using our middle and ring fingers (T2 and T3).
We’ll be in the key of E minor and are going to learn 4 chords. We will play these using string skipping and tapping to create arpeggios in sequence to form a progression. Each pattern can be practiced individually until you get the hang of them and then we can link them together at the end.
String Skipping and Tapping – Pattern 1# Em7:
The first pattern is going to be the chord based on the root of our scale (E minor). We will play Em7. The notes are:
E – G – B – D
We’ll play the Root, third and fifth on the A string, that’s E, G, B. Then we’ll skip to the G string and play a sequence of 7th, Root, 3rd, 7th, Root. That’s D, E, G, D, E.
String Skipping and Tapping Pattern 2 – Am7:
Pattern 2 is the same as Pattern 1. We’re playing Am7 now so everything is up one string. However the notes on the B string move up 1 fret due to the tuning of the guitar. (Each string is a 4th above the previous string, except the B which is a Major 3rd above the previous string, G). The notes of the chord are:
A – C – E – G
As a result we get A, C, E on the D string and G, A, C, G, A on the B string.
String Skipping and Tapping Pattern 3 – B7b9:
Pattern 3 is where things get a bit more interesting! We’ll be playing a B7b9. That’s a B dominant 7 with a flat 9 added to it. In our key of E minor the B chord would actually be Bm7, however we’re swapping the note D for the D# from the E Harmonic minor scale. This will spice things up slightly and give a nicer resolution back to the Root chord later. The notes of the chord are:
B – D# – F# – A – C
For this pattern you will need to use your middle and ring fingers on your picking hand. You can use your index finger for tapping but I prefer to keep my pick held between my thumb and index finger.
Pattern 4 – B7(Add 11):
Pattern 4 is also a chord based on B however we are going to use the 7th (A) as our bass note, making this an inversion. B7(add11) is a B dominant 7 chord with an 11th added to it. Again we will make use of T2 (Middle finger) and T3 (Ring finger) for the tapping. The notes of the chord are:
B – D# – F# – A – E
Putting it all together:
Once you get the hang of each pattern you can string them together in order. This will give you a I – IV – V progression. You can loop back to pattern 1 after playing pattern 4 or just end by playing the note E on the 7th fret A string.
Below are some examples at different speeds.
Feel free to try the patterns in a different order and even move them around the neck to get different chord arpeggios!
Footnote: The Guitar used in the cover image of this post is a Skervessen Raptor6. Skervessen are an independent luthier making some of the finest guitars in the world.
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