9th and 13th Chords for Blues...

GuitarBlog: 9th and 13th Chords for Blues...

Blues chords are most commonly seen functioning in progressions as Dominant 7th's. Sadly, playing Dominant 7 chords time after time in a Blues can get boring...

Spice up your next Blues jam by learning how to include a couple of chord extensions placed upon the Dominant 7th. These extensions most commonly include the 9th, and the 13th. When added to the notes of the existing Dominant 7th chord we achieve a very interesting sound that quickly catches the listeners ear. 

By spicing up the sound of the Dominant 7th chord with extensions, we achieve more color (plus this allows for subtle changes in how we approach our soloing too). 

Guitarists like Stevie Ray Vaughn have created a fantastic recognizable sound by including these very extensions. This episode of the GuitarBlog will help to get you started with learning how to play and apply these 9th & 13th shapes.

PART ONE: In the first section we study how the most popular Dominant 9th chord patterns can be applied into progressions that cover different Blues styles. Example one introduces the Dominant 9th off of the 5th and 6th string roots. The example progressions place the Dominant 9th chords in and around common Blues based Dominant 7th situations. Example two introduces the most popular Dominant 9th voicing built off of the fourth string. A Funky-Blues progression is provided which showcases how the 4th-string root Dominant 9th can be applied musically.

PART TWO: Example three moves into the sounds of the Dominant 13th chord. The most popular 6th-string root Dominant 13th chord is introduced into the structure of the first four bars of a typical 12-Bar Blues Progression. The Dominant 13th is shown used against both the Dominant 7th and the Dominant 9th chord types. In example four, the progression is taken from the final four measures of a typical 12-Bar Blues. This segment of the standard Blues progression (often referred to as the, "Turn-a-round"), runs through the V - IV - I - V (measures 9, 10, 11 and 12), of the 12-Bar cycle. Example four provides a clear demonstration of how the cycle can be enhanced using the sound of the Dominant 13th along-side the 9th and the 7th chords. 

PART THREE: In the final video, we get to experience the varied application of the Dominant 9th and 13th chord types across the entire 12-Bar Blues Progression. These chords are intermixed against the standard Dominant 7th's so that the student can fully understand how the chord voicings and chord types could be applied in the most practical manner.
Enjoy the lesson!

9th and 13th Chords for Blues

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