How would you write an arpeggio that never stops the notes that are played . . . they just keep on ringing. E.g, in the example below, when the E is played in measure 1 beat 1, it continues ringing all the way up to when it is struck again, and then it rings some more. This also happens with every other note.

1  +  2  +  3  +  4  +  1  +  2  +  3  +  4  +
E  B  F# G     B  F# G  E  B  F# G     B  F# G

I'm sure it's been done before, seeing that guitars usually play arpeggios in this way.

  • This could vary depending on the instrument. Often for the classical guitar and even other guitars, this would be the default interpretation with no special notation needed.
    – amalgamate
    Jan 29, 2016 at 19:10
  • Is this common in harp strums or piano rolled chords? I heard that there are right hand and left hand notation signs, and another that tells you whether the chords are to be rolled upward or downward. Apr 9, 2019 at 4:49

1 Answer 1


Usually this is notated with the comment "let ring" above or below the staff; optionally you can include a dashed line (similar to an 8va line) that indicates the span of music where it should be played this way.

Here's a good example

  • Perfect! Just wondering, what would be expected if you place a rest in there somewhere?
    – Daniel
    Sep 17, 2013 at 20:38
  • A rest would indicate silencing the strings. Note that you could write a rest for the bass and/or treble lines independently.
    – Dave
    Sep 17, 2013 at 20:43

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