Dominant 7th Arpeggios (Dom 7) | Guitar Lesson with Patterns and Shapes

What Are Dominant Seventh Arpeggios?

Dominant seventh arpeggios are made of four notes that are : Root (1), major third (3), fifth (5) and minor seventh (b7).

They can be seen as dominant 7 chords whose notes are played one after the other. 

G7 chord G B D F
G7 arpeggio G B D F
Formula 1 3 5 b7

Dominant Seventh Arpeggio Guitar Diagrams

How To Play Dominant 7 Arpeggios on Guitar?

Here are four basic dominant seventh arpeggio patterns. The notes of each shape are spread out over one octave. 

The root (R) gives the tonality of the arpeggio.



Dom7 arpeggios for guitar one octave shapes

Dominant 7 Arpeggios - Two Octave Shapes

The next two diagrams show how you can play dom7 arpeggios in position within the space of two octaves.

Once you are comfortable with the one octave shapes previously seen, you can try to play these shapes starting from the third, the fifth and the seventh. 

Playing the corresponding chord after or before these arpeggios is a good way to bring them together.



Dom 7 arpeggios two octave shapes

Dom7 Apeggio Charts - CAGED System

Once you have mastered the basic arpeggio shapes, you will be able to tackle the dom7 arpeggios in CAGED forms. 

What is CAGED?

This is a common technique of learning which permits an understanding of how arpeggios, scales and chords look all over the entire guitar neck. You 'll find below six guitar charts. The first one show how to play a G7 arpeggio all over the guitar neck. The orange note (R) is the root note. 

The five other shapes are the dom7 arpeggio shapes organized around the 5 CAGED forms, namely (left to right):

  • E (the brown dots)
  • D (purple)
  • C (blue)
  • A (red)
  • G (green)

Dom7 Arpeggios and Scales Relationships

Dominant 7 arpeggio can be found into five modes taken from the four most known families of scale that are : Major scale, harmonic minor, harmonic major and melodic major scales. As shown in the guitar diagrams, the five modes are :

  • Mixolydian
  • Phrygian
  • Mixolydian b2
  • Lydian dominant 
  • Mixolydian b13

Extended Dom7 Arpeggios

Diatonic dom7 arpeggios can be extended with the 9, 11 or 13th thus giving four superimposed arpeggios. Exemple with G7

  • G7 (1, 3, 5, 7).
  • Bm7b5 (1, b3, b5, b7) starting on the third of G.
  • Dm7 (1, b3, 5, b7) starting on the 5th of G.
  • Fm7 (1, b3, 5, b7) starting on the b7 of G.

Dominant 7 Arpeggio Application

II-V Progression and Dominant 7th Arpeggio

The basic use of an arpeggio is to play it over the corresponding chord. Let's take an example with a C major II-V-I sequence : The chord progression will be Dm7 | G7 | CM7 | % |. It means that we will be playing a D minor 7th arpeggio over the Dm7 chord, a  G dominant 7th arpeggio over the G7 chord and a C major seventh arpeggio over the CM7. 

Here is a short II | V jazz guitar line using a G dominant 7th arpeggio.

  • Measure 1 : D Dorian mode starting on the root with a passing tone (A#) between the fifth of Dm7 (A) and the major third of G7 (B).
  • Measure 2 : G dominant 7th arpeggio starting on the major third (B) with another passing tone (A#) to approach the major third.
Dominant 7th arpeggio jazz guitar lick

Dom7 Arpeggio in Jazz Blues

The following study show how to use dominant 7 arpeggios over a jazz blues progression in Bb. Three dom7 arpeggios are used in it :

  • Bb7 (Bb, D, F, Ab)
  • Eb7 (Eb, G, Bb, Db)
  • F7 (F, A, C, Eb)
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Last edited: 03/12/2020

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  • Mancoba Qubeka
    • 1. Mancoba Qubeka On 04/23/2020
    I love it. It is nice and comprehensive
    • Stef Ramin
      • Stef RaminOn 04/23/2020
      Glad it helps