Minor 6th chords

The Minor 6th chord is a four-note chord that adds the sixth degree note in the scale to the minor triad. By comparing Cm with Cm6 we can see that the notes changes from C, Eb, G to C, Eb, G, A. The minor sixth chord can be a substitute for a common minor, but can sound somewhat dissonant depending on the musical circumstances.

Minor 6th chords

Cm6

  • Cm6 chord diagram

Dm6

  • Dm6 chord diagram

Em6

  • Em6 chord diagram

Fm6

  • Fm6 chord diagram

Gm6

  • Gm6 chord diagram

Am6

  • Am6 chord diagram

Bm6

  • Bm6 chord diagram

Comment

These are, generally, chords in open position, with Cm6 as an exception which is a closed chord (having no loose strings). Also noticeable is that Cm6, Fm6 and Bm6 are played with alternative bass notes, see different versions below. Fm6 can be played with the root note in the base by using the thumb on the sixth string and muting the fifth on the same time.

Chord construction

Cm6  x - x - Eb - A - C - G
Dm6  x - x - D - A - B - F
Em6  E - B - E - G - C# - E
Fm6  x - x - D - Ab - C - F
Gm6  G - Bb - E - G - D - E
Am6  x - A - E - A - C - F#
Bm6  x - x - D - G# - B - F#
Guitar versions of the chord

Notes in chord

Cm6  C - Eb - G - A
Dm6  D - F - A - B
Em6  E - G - B - C#
Fm6  F - Ab - C - D
Gm6  G - Bb - D - E
Am6  A - C - E - F#
Bm6  B - D - F# - G#
The intervals are 1 – b3 – 5 – 6

Movable minor 6th chord

The Minor 6th can be played as a barre chord. The diagram below shows a barre shape based on the Em6 shape with the root note on the 6th string.

chord shape 6th chord

To play, for example F#m6, the short notation is: 244242.

Voicings with bass note on 5th string

If you want to play the minor sixth with the bass note on fifth string, here are some voicings. Notice that the two shapes are movable. Concerning Gm6, Am6 and Bm6 the root note is note the same as the bass note.

Fm6: XX1113
Cm6: X31213
Dm6: X53435
Em6: X75657
Fm6: X86768
Gm6: X55756
Am6: X77978
Bm6: X 9 9 11 9 10

Chord progressions

Here is one chord sequence that include a minor 6th:

G - Dm6 - E7 - Am7 - D7 - G

Notice that the Dm6 fits well before E7 since both include a B note, which Dm doesn't.



Back to chord types

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