Jazz Guitar Chord Chart #1

Your first steps in jazz guitar chords!

gibson-es-137

Welcome to this online jazz guitar chord chart. You’ll find every chord shape you need to get started. If not, please let me know by posting a question or a comment (at the bottom of this page) and I’ll get back to you shortly…

Please note that this chart is only for chords in root position (meaning that the tonic / bass is the lowest note). Chord inversions are not discussed on this page. Also note that not all chords are created equal. In this jazz guitar chord chart, only one possible way of addressing such a chord voicing has been posted. And it might just not be your favorite way. :-)

Only use what sounds good and practical to you. As we say, take the rest, leave the best! (or is it the opposite?)

On this page you’ll find these chords:

Major
(7th and 6th)
Minor
(7th, 6th, 9th and 11th)
Dominant
(7th, 9th and 13th)Minor 7th (b5)
(aka half-diminished)

… and in the jazz guitar chord chart #2 you’ll find …

Diminished 7th
(seen with a “o7″ sign)

Altered dominants
(7th chords
with b9 or #9
or b5 or #5
or #11 or b13)

 

What about symbols with 9th, 11th and 13th ?
(and all the other complicated stuff…)

Yes, I know, some jazz chords symbols can look like postal codes! It’s normal. The thing is, the chords are always categorized according to their basic “7th” sound. If you see a “Db min 9″ symbol, you will still find it in the minor section of this jazz guitar chord chart.

Why All Chords in “C” ?

Yes, I know. All the chords on this page are movable chord shapes. I have indicated the “C” (root of chord) in red color. As long as you know what the bass note is, you will be able to use any chord shape in 12 keys!

For example: a basic C major 7th shape at the third fret becomes a Fmaj7 when played at the 8th fret…

jazz guitar chord chart

This is called transposition. It’s easy on the guitar (at least when you know the notes on the biggest strings of the instrument.)

 

Major

How to identify a major 7th (or major 6th) chord…
Often printed on chart as :

  • “major6″ “maj6″ or often just plain “6”
  • “major7″
  • “maj7″
  • “M7″ (notice the capital “M”)
  • with these symbols also:

chord-chart-2

 

Number 7 with a dash through it and “little triangle” symbols
(*for major 7th only*)

Major 7th

 

chord-chart-3

On the top line we have drop 2 voicings. The bottom has drop 3 voicings (with string skip) Carefull with the string skipping, really mute that string!

Major 6th

 

chord-chart-4
Lower-left and upper-right corners are more common. Please notice that the Cmaj6 (often written simply as C6) contains the same notes as the Am7 chord… C E G A !

 

Minor

How to identify a minor 7th (or minor 6th) chord… Often printed on chart as :

  • “minor6″ “min6″ and sometimes “-6″
  • “minor7″
  • “min7″
  • “m7″ (notice the small “m”)
  • with this symbols also : “-7″ (it’s a minus sign)

[*The 6th is interchangeable with the 13th*]

 

Minor 7th

chord-chart-5

 

Minor 6th
(or Minor 13th)

 

chord-chart-6

Please notice that the Cmin6 (often written simply as Cm6 or C-6) contains the same notes as the Am7 (b5) chord… C Eb G A !

Minor 9th

chord-chart-7

 

Minor 11th

chord-chart-8

Dominant (just “7”)

How identify a dominant 7th chord … Often printed on charts as :

  • 7
  • 7th
  • other numbers : 9, 13
  • sometimes : “dom7″ symbol

Basically, dominant are chords with “just a number”, without any “major” or “minor” definition.

*Note*: If your chord symbol has a number *and* a bracket/parenthesis with alterations (such as b9 or b13), you should go the the Altered Dominant section of this jazz guitar chord chart.

Dominant 7th

chord-chart-10

Dominant 9th

chord-chart-9

Learn to play the bottom right voicing higher on the fretboard (w/o the open string).

Dominant 13th

chord-chart-11

Minor 7th (b5)
(pronounced : “Minor Seventh Flat Five”)

How to identify minor7th (b5) chords… often printed on charts as :

  • m7(b5)
  • min7(b5)
  • -7(b5)
  • sometimes : minor7th (flat 5th)
  • with this symbol :

chord-chart-12

dashed circle meaning “half-diminished”

chord-chart-14

Have a Question or Comment ?

Do you have a question or comment about anything discussed in this jazz guitarchord chart? Post it here! It should be answered soon…

One thought on “Jazz Guitar Chord Chart #1

Leave a Reply