Drill of the Week #32 – How to Sweep Tap Arpeggios

richardsguitarstudio on January 17, 2014

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Sweep tap arpeggios – a very flashy technique that will surely grab the audiences attention. First, you need to learn how to sweep arpeggios. Search our website for sweep arpeggios and you will find many resources. Then you would need to learn to tap – again, search for tapping. Once you’ve done that, the combination is the next step. Here are a few tips.

  1. Tap with the middle finger. When do tapping licks, exercises, solos, etc get used to tapping with the middle finger. Why? This will allow you to hold your pick with the index and thumb, and quickly shoot the middle finger out to tap. If you only can tap with the index finger, then you have to pull the pick in to hold it under your fingers, which takes a bit of time. If you’re switching back and forth between picking and tapping rapid fire in a solo, using the middle finger is best.
  2. Subdivide the beat.¬†Practice with a metronome and play the rhythms as written (triplet 16th notes counted “1-a-la-and-a-la 2-a-la-and-a-la etc”). You can even set the metronome at the eighth note and play 3 notes per beat rather than 6 to keep it more even and manageable at a slower tempo.
  3. Be able to play at any tempo. Many times, students can only sweep at an extremely slow or an extremely fast (yet sloppy) tempo. You should be able to control the technique enough to keep the rhythm even at any tempo in between.

Nate from Richards Guitar Studio shows you how to sweep tap arpeggios in this guitar lesson. Develop sweep picking technique and add tapping to make a sweep tap arpeggio.

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