Watch the E7 A7 F#7 B7 online guitar lesson by Robbie Calvo from Sweet Notes
In the next two lesson plans we will be working in the Country/ R&B realm. I thought we'd concentrate purely on arpeggios for each of the chords in the progression and we are going to add chromatic passing tones to these to enhance the fluidity of our playing. You've probably noticed that in every lesson plan I have shown you patterns and shapes that work over all of our chords in one fretboard position. The reason I do this is to familiarize you with a region of the neck and the notes that are found in the chords and scales at that position. At some point connecting adjacent shapes will help you create new ideas and let you flow across the neck effortlessly. Nothing quite looks classier though than knowing your stuff wherever you are on the guitar. As we go through the lick Ideas I want you to remember the style we are playing and some of the techniques we talk about to create that 'country twang thang'. A lot of country players use a pick and fingers which sounds amazing. What I do when I want the notes to spank a little is pull up on the string with my thumb and first finger, much in the same way a bassist slaps the bass. I'll show you what I mean on our video portion of this lesson plan.
Let's get working on learning the arpeggio shape for the first chord in our progression. An E7 arpeggio. Play an E7 chord in open position and name the notes in that voicing, E - B - E - G# - D - E. The root is E, the 3rd is G#, the 5th is B and the b7 is D. Let's learn the corresponding arpeggio shape and name the notes as we do so.
Lick 1 - A great lick starting on the open E string and ending up an octave higher. Try using a pick to play this first and then try plucking the strings with your fingers and thumb. Lick 2 - Try this lick at a much slower tempo and bring it up to tempo gradually. Those triplets at 132 get pretty tricky don't they?! Lick 3 - For the first two beats of this lick I am using an E as a pedal tone and chromatically descending down to the A note. Beat four is a chromatic move from A up to B natural. In bar 2 really make the lower string twang. Play this lick with a pick and then try it with your thumb and first finger.
A7 is the next chord the progression and is the IV chord. Let's play an A7 chord at the 2nd fret and name the notes A - E - A - C# - G. So we have the root, A, C# the 3rd, E the 5th and G the b7.
Play through the arpeggio shape and name the notes. This is a two octave A7 arpeggio shape. I have written out some chromatic connecting notes for each of the strings in this arpeggio too.
Lick 1 - A really bluesy lick with a nice chromatic passage from A up to B. The lick resolves to the 5th (E) in measure 2. Play the same exact lick but resolve the lick to the A on the 3rd string 2nd fret instead. Lick 2 - This is a motif/riff kind of idea that would sound good harmonized. Let's play the main riff and we'll try a harmony part. Lick 3 - A great lick for the finger and thumb technique. Try to really feel the implied bends and make the 8th notes snappy or more staccato than usual. Note that I am using the open A string on beat 2 of bar 2.
Play an F#7 chord at the 2nd fret and name the notes in the chord voicing from low to high F# - C# - E - A# - C# - F#. The root note is F#, the 3rd is A#, the 5th is C# and the b7 is E. The F#7 arpeggio shape we are going to use is the same pattern we used in our R&B Lesson plan over G7. So all we have to do is remember that shape and move it down one fret. Play the shape through from the low F# to the high A# and name the notes as you do so. Again, this is to strengthen your fretboard knowledge. We are going to add chromatic tones to this shape too and all the same moves we've learned before using this shape are still applicable so I won't labor on it!
Lick 1 - This lick might stretch your hand a little especially if you don't use your little finger much. I advocate that you play the slide from A up to A# with your pinky and you'll find it easier to reach the F# at the 2nd fret. The lick resolves to the C# (5th). Lick 2 - The first measure has a really bluesy feel to it. The 2nd measure uses a chromatic line from A# to G# and then resolves from F# to the E (b7). Try playing this lick with your fingers and really snap the strings with an upward pull.
Play a B7 chord at the 2nd fret and name the notes in the voicing B - D# - A - B - F#. The root note is B, the 3rd is D#, the 5th is F# and the b7 is A. The arpeggio shape we are going to use is a pattern we have learned before In our R&B lesson plan and was used over the C7/9 chord. All we need to do is move the shape down one fret from the 3rd to the 2nd fret and you have a B7/9 arpeggio. Play through the shape naming the notes as you do so.
Lick -1 This is a simple lick that uses all of our B7 chord tones and resolves in both measures to A the b7. Lick 2 - A nice ascending lick with a semi-tone bend from G# to A(b7) at the end of the first measure. Measure 2 begins with a sustained F# (5th) and ultimately resolves to the F#.
***Please note that at 3:30 of this video segment I call an A# a D#. It is in fact an A#.