How to play guitar broken chords with creativity?

Playing broken chords can either mean two things:

a. Your guitar sounds very unique and creatively done.
b. Your guitar sounds out of pitch and horrible.

One is good and the other is bad. Why? It is because to play guitar broken chords, one must have the sharp ability of tuning. For example , a series of notes plucking the broken chord below can be played in G chord:

Illustration tablature Figure 1:

<……………………G Chord……………………>

—————–5————————–E high
————-3——-3———————-B
——2——————-2—————–G
—0——0——————-0————-D
——————————————–A
-3——————————-3———-E bass

But the one minor alteration below is a complete out of tune:

Illustration Tablature Figure 2:

<…………………G chord?………………………>

—————–4————————–E high
————-3——-3———————-B
——2——————-2—————–G
—2——2——————-2————-D
——————————————–A
-3——————————-3———-E bass

Play it in your guitar and you cannot really think it belongs to a chord of G.

This gives us the first technique in broken chords playing:

Observance of proper notes affected with the associated key signatures.

Since our example uses a key signature of G, the notes affected are the following:
G- so
A- la
B – ti
C- do
D- re
E- mi
F#- fa#
G- so

Examining the notes played under G in 1st tablature illustration:

<………………….G Chord……………………..>

—————–5————————–E high
————-3——-3———————-B
——2——————-2—————–G
—0——0——————-0————-D
——————————————–A
-3——————————-3———-E bass

Notes played in sequence: so–re–la–re–re–la—re–la—re–so

Remarks: All notes played in the sequence does not violate the notes for the key of G.

Examining the notes played under G in 2nd tablature illustration:

<…………………G chord?………………………>

—————–4————————–E high
————-3——-3———————-B
——2——————-2—————–G
—2——2——————-2————-D
——————————————–A
-3——————————-3———-E bass

Notes played in sequence: so–mi–la–mi–re–so#—re–la—mi–so

The problem notes is indicated by red color. Lets listen in detail:

The obvious out of pitch (not following G major notes affected) is the so #. But why “mi” seems out of pitch?

This leads us to the 2nd rules of playing broken chords.

The importance of chord triad and your ears

G major chord triad is: so -ti- re, so this means any first 3 notes of the chords to be played must capture a G sound and to make this happen. All first 3 notes played should fall into this triad to make sure it wont fall out of pitch.

The first set when played , does not deviate so far from the G sound so it is tolerable. The 2nd set is very deviated, in fact, the actual chord for that 1st 3 notes is now E-minor.

If you have trouble understanding the technical aspect of music, I recommend reading music lessons:

Free Music Lessons
Music Theory Scales
Sharp major scale
Sharp minor scale
Flat Major Scale
Flat Minor Scale


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