Below: Cycle of 4ths using triplets in one position on the guitar fingerboard.
Ascending: Cycle of 4ths
Descending: Cycle [as Cycle of 5ths]
To create strength and consistency to our playing it is best to employ “Tetrachords”
But, what is a Tetrachord?
A tetrachord is a 4 note grouping.
When you play through the exercise you will be aware of the employment of Pentatonic’s, Major/Minor arpeggios and plain arpeggios. This in turn gives us easy fingering and fluidity in the picking hand and the fretting hand.
NOTICE THE REPEATED PATTERN AND GUITAR FINGERING.
DIAGRAM EXPLANATION BELOW:
THE CYCLE OF 4THS [and 5ths]
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The key to alternate picking with the guitar pick when dealing with jazz improvisation and jazz fusion improvisation is to be aware of the off -beat. In these two little examples we simply miss the 1st beat.
Remember that the 2nd note of a group of 16ths will be an “Off-beat” and an “Upstroke”. But, if you start on the “Off-beat” with a down stroke then the patterns will be opposite to what they would be starting on the beat. This may sound confusing but is “paradoxically” natural and an easy way to create and control ‘syncopation”, literally cutting off the first note.
You can do this anywhere in the bar, but to begin with it is best explained through the two short example alternate picking exercises.
This phrase below is a little “Off-beat” phrase found in the John Mclaughlin album/CD called “Belo Herozonte.
Below we use sextuplets and miss out the first beat. [Count the silent beat but pluck the string starting on the 2nd off beat].
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