Guitar Arpeggios: The Ultimate Guide

Want to learn how to play guitar arpeggios? You’re in the right place, we’re going to show you everything you need to know about guitar arpeggios. 

In this free guitar lesson you will learn:

  • Over 10 essential guitar arpeggios which will make you sound amazing.
  • 3 quick & easy tips which will enhance your musicality.
  • 2 must-know soloing tricks that will take your playing to the next level.
  • The secret to learning arpeggios fast.

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We’re going to show you a range of guitar arpeggios from beginner to advanced. So whether you’re an arpeggio newbie or an advanced guitarist, there’s something for everyone on this page.

Beginner Guitar Arpeggios

If you want to learn guitar arpeggios, you must start with open arpeggios. These are arpeggios which are played in an open position.

To begin with, let’s learn some 1 octave major and minor arpeggios. We’re going to learn these arpeggios in following keys:

  • E Major.
  • E Minor.
  • A Major.
  • A Minor.
  • G Major.
  • G Minor.
  • D Major.
  • D Minor.
  • C Major.
  • C Minor.

E Major Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This is known as the ‘E major arpeggio’, because it is based on an E major chord.

To learn the E chord, go here: 4 Easy Ways To Play The E Guitar Chord On Guitar

Learn Guitar Arpeggios

(If you don't understand the above image please read our article "How To Read Guitar Chordboxes In 60 Seconds". It will make everything clear!)

To learn guitar arpeggios in the key of E, make sure you use the following fingers on each fret:

  • 3rd finger on the 4th fret of the low E string. (6th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the A string (5th string.) and D string.  (4th string.)

Make sure that you play EACH note individually. Don’t try and play this arpeggio like a chord. Play each note seperately.

E Minor Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This is known as the ‘E minor arpeggio’ because it is based on an Em chord.

To learn the Em chord, go here: Em Guitar Chord – 4 Easy Ways To Play This Essential Chord

Make sure you this following fingers when learning this guitar arpeggios:

  • 2nd finger on the 3rd fret of the low E string. (6th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the A string (5th string.) and D string.  (4th string.)

Guitar Arpeggios

A Major Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This arpeggio is based on the ‘A major’ chord.

To learn this chord go here:3 Easy Ways To Play The A Chord On Guitar

When you play this chord, make sure you use the following fingers:

  • 3rd finger on the 4th fret of the A string. (5th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the D string (4th string.) and G string.  (3rd string.)

A Major Arp

A Minor Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This guitar arpeggio is based on the ‘A minor chord’.

To learn this essential guitar chord, go here:Am Guitar Chord For Beginners

Use the following fingers for each arpeggio note:

  • 2nd finger on the 3rd fret of the A string. (5th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the D string (4th string.) and G string.  (3rd string.)

A_Minor_Arp_(1_Octave)

G Major Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This guitar arpeggio is based on the G major chord.

To learn this chord, go here:4 Easy Ways To Play The G Chord On Guitar

Use this fingering when learning this arpeggio:

  • 2nd finger on the 3rd fret of the low E string. (6th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the A string. (5th string.)

Learn Guitar Arpeggios

G Minor Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

Here’s the tab for the G minor arpeggio. This arpeggio is based on a ‘G minor chord’.

To learn this chord, go here: G Minor Guitar Chord For Beginners

Use these fingers when you play this arpeggio:

  • 3rd finger on the 3rd fret of the low E string. (6th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 1st fret of the A string. (5th string.)

G_Minor_Arpeggio_1_Octave

D Major Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This ‘D major arpeggio’ is based on a ‘D chord’.

Learn the D chord here: 3 Easy Ways To Play The D Chord On Guitar

Use these fingers when you play this arpeggio:

  • 3rd finger on the 4th fret of the D string. (4th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the G string. (3rd string.)
  • 2nd finger on the 3rd fret of the B string. (2nd string.)

Learn Guitar Arpeggios

D Minor Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

This arpeggio is based on a Dm chord.

Learn the Dm chord here: 3 Easy Ways To Play The Dm Guitar Chord

When you play this arpeggio, use the following fingers:

  • 2nd finger on the 3rd fret of the D string. (4th string.)
  • 1st finger on the 2nd fret of the G string. (3rd string.)
  • 3rd finger on the 3rd fret of the B string. (2nd string.)

D_Min_Arp_(1_Octave)

C Major Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

Here’s a C major arpeggio:

C_Major_1_Octave_Arp

This arpeggio is based on a C major chord. To learn this chord, go here: Easy Ways To Play The C Guitar Chord

C Minor Guitar Arpeggios (1 Octave)

Here’s a C minor guitar arpeggio:

C_Minor_Arp_(1_Octave)

This arpeggio is based on a Cm guitar chord. To learn this chord, go here: 4 Easy Ways To Play The C Minor Guitar Chord

2 Octave Guitar Arpeggios

Now we’ve learned how to play some 1 octave arpeggios, let’s learn some 2 octave arpeggios. For this, we’re going to learn the following arpeggios.

  • E Major Arpeggio.
  • E Minor Arpeggio.
  • A Major Arpeggio.
  • A Minor Arpeggio.
  • G Major Arpeggio.
  • G Minor Arpeggio.

E Major Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

Learn Guitar Arpeggios

E Minor Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

E_Minor_Arpeggio

A Major Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

A_Major_Arpeggio_(2_Octaves)

A Minor Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

A_Minor_Arp_(2_Octaves)

G Major Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

G_Major_2_Octave_

G Minor Arpeggio (2 Octaves)

G_Minor_(2_Octaves)

What is an arpeggio?

An arpeggio is uses the EXACT same notes as a guitar chord. However, they are played individually.

Let’s compare, here’s what a C guitar chord sounds like:

Here’s what the C arpeggio sounds like:

Can you hear how the chord and arpeggio, sound exactly the same. However, in a guitar chord all of the notes are played at the same time. In an arpeggio, all of the notes of the chord are played separately.

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Quick Tip!

To learn arpeggios fast, take any chord that you know and play each note individually. This is the fastest way to learn a guitar arpeggio.

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