Maj7 Arpeggios

How to play Maj7 Arpeggios!

Below you’ll find video lessons demonstrating how to play all maj7 arpeggios.

You can use this arpeggio whenever you play over chord I or IV.

Even though it’s rare, the maj7 chord does sometimes appear in other places than I and IV, should this be the case you could then apply the maj7 arpeggio.

In fact, whenever there is a maj7 chord, the maj7 arpeggio will work.

In order to use the maj7 arpeggio as you solo or write it is essential that you learn it in all shapes, first up is the E shape.

The E shaped maj7 arpeggio

To learn this arpeggio you need to compare it to the E shaped maj7 chord.

To build the arpeggio, simply ensure all notes from the chord appear in consecutive order.

That means play: R 3 5 7 R 3 5 7 etc until you covered all intervals you can reach in this area of the neck.

Looks like this in Chordacus:

Amaj7 arpeggio E shape

Amaj7 arpeggio Em  shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio E shape

Dmaj7 arp E shape

Play through this in A and D as the images and video show but don’t stop there.

For complete control you simply must run the exercise all the way around the cycle of 4th, like this: A – D – G – C – F – Bb – Eb – Ab – Db – Gb – B – E.

The A shaped maj7 arpeggio

This shape is slightly more awkward to phrase with compared with the E shape. Looks like this as a chordacus images:

Amaj7 arpeggio A shape

Amaj7 arpeggio A  shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio A shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio A shape

First learn the shape in A and D, then take it around the cycle of 4th.

The D shaped maj7 arpeggio

As the D shape is so small and look so similar to the D shaped maj7 chord, this arpeggio doesn’t take long to get used to. Looks like this in A and D:

Amaj7 arpeggio D shape

Amaj7 D shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio D shape

Dmaj7 arp d shape

As always, take it around the full cycle of 4th before you stop practicing the D shape.

To broaden your pallet, mix the Dmaj7 arpeggio shape with the D shaped Major Pentatonic, Ionian and Lydian scale shapes.

The G shaped maj7 arpeggio

Only two more shapes to learn before you covered the entire fret board.

The G shaped maj7 arpeggio look like this:

Amaj7 arpeggio G shape

Amaj7 arp G shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio G shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio G shape

Start slowly, take it around the full cycle before you move on to the last shape.

The C shaped maj7 arpeggio

The C shape is very useful, it fits so well under your fingers. Many classic licks are composed using this shape.

Looks like this in Chordacus.

Amaj7 arpeggio C shape

Amaj7 C shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio C shape

Dmaj7 arpeggio C shape

Here are the final two video lessons, remember to go all the way around the cycle before you stop practicing the Cmaj7 shaped arpeggio.

Conclusion

That was all the shapes of a maj7 arpeggio. The only way to master these shapes is to be able to play them in any key, anywhere on the neck.

Simply practice each shape around the cycle of 4th before you start connecting them (this is done at Master Arpeggios).

Off course, in a musical situation you never play any of these shapes just up and down, you only do this to memorise them.

To learn more about how to actually use the maj7 arpeggio, take the Advanced Guitar Course.