Minor 11th chords

The Minor 11th (m11) chord is in theory a six-note chord, but is played with one or more notes omitted on the guitar. The 13th minor can be used as substitution for 7th and 9th minor chords to give another flavor.

There are different many different versions of this chord possible on guitar among many have difficult fingerings. The shapes presented in this overview are selected from a playability perspective. It's common to exclude the fifth and sometimes also the ninth.

m11

Cm11

  • Cm11 chord diagram

Dm11

  • Dm11 chord diagram

Em11

  • Em11 chord diagram

F#m11

  • F#m11 chord diagram

Gm11

  • Gm11 chord diagram

Am11

  • Am11 chord diagram

Bm11

  • Bm11 chord diagram

Barre shape

  • Minor 11th chord shape

Comment

In the Cm11 version presented above, the 5th is omitted.

In the Dm11 version presented above, the 5th and 9th are omitted. Two barre chord shapes including the 9th are 10 8 10 9 8 8 and X53553.

In the Em11 version presented above, the 5th and 9th are omitted. One of the alternative options including the 9th is 000032.

Fm11 is not included among the pictures. One way to play it is 111044.

Gm11 can also be played as 303311. In both this version and the diagram version above, the 5th is omitted.

One of the most frequent used minor 11th chords in popular music styles are the Bm11. Aside from the presented diagram version, two other, but less common, possibilities are X20200 and X22230.

Minor 11th with flats and sharps

Additional chords in this category:

C sharp / D flat m11 (no9): X44420
D sharp / E flat m11 (no9): XX1122
F sharp / G flat m11: 202100
G sharp / A flat m11: 44430X
A sharp / B flat m11 (no)): X1112X

Minor 11th (movable jazz shapes)

Gm11

  • Gm11 chord diagram

Am11

  • Am11 chord diagram

Bm11

  • Bm11 chord diagram

Cm11

  • Cm11 chord diagram

Comment

These shapes are probably the most used shapes for this chord category in jazz. The root is on the 6th string and the fifth string is muted with an adjacent finger. The fifth interval is omitted.

Chord formula

The minor eleventh is built with the formula 1-b3-5-b7-9-11.

Chord construction

Cm11  C - x - Bb - Eb - F - x
Dm11  D - x - C - F - G - x
Em11  E - x - D - G - A - x
Fm11  F - x - Eb - Ab - Bb - x
Gm11  G - x - F - Bb - C - x
Am11  A - x - G - C - D - x
Bm11  B - x - A - D - E - x
Guitar versions of the chord

Notes in chord

Cm11  C - Eb - G - Bb - D - F
Dm11  D - F - A - C - E - G
Em11  E - G - B - D - F# - A
Fm11  F - Ab - C - Eb - G - Bb
Gm11  G - Bb - D - F - A - C
Am11  A - C - E - G - B - D
Bm11  B - D - F# - A - C# - E
The intervals are 1 – b3 – 5 – b7 – 9 - 11

Chord progressions

Examples of progressions including minor 13th:

E - Esus4 - F#m11

F#m11 - Amaj9 - Dmaj9

Bm11 - Em7 - Cmaj7


Minor 11th chords work as ii and vi, but not as iii chords (atonal). So, for example, in C major key, Dm11 and Am11 are viable (diatonic) options.

Back to chord types

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