How to Use 6th Chords

By February 25, 2013 Guitar

This is a continuation of my Chord Extensions 101 series that I started a few months ago. In this video, I talk about 6th chords: what they are, how to build them, and how to use 6th chords. I’m trying out this new format, so please let me know what you think of the white board video.

Just to reiterate some of the things in the video (or if you can’t access it), here are some basic rules:

A 6th chord is a major triad with an added 6. So, if we are building a C6 chord, the notes are C-E-G-A.

You can add a 6th when a major chord is functioning as the tonic, subdominant, or dominant (I, IV, or V). However, you should trust your ears. It doesn’t necessarily¬†always sound good. The 6th chord has a very distinctive sound, and may not be appropriate for the style or it may conflict with your vocal melody.

Thanks, and let me know how you’ve added a 6th chord to a song recently!Guitar Macro 1

Happy Monday,

Matt Logan

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