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  1. #1
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    Using the Minor 7b9 chord

    This is a very general query but in what context might you use this chord?

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  4. #3
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    m7b9?

    Not sure it's terribly useful for anything. I'm sure someone will have a use for it though.

  5. #4
    Never seen one in The wild ...
    Could be a Phrigian type of Chord i suppose

    What song ?

  6. #5
    When you absolutely, positively, need to drive home the point that you want "PHRYGIAN, DAMMIT, NOT PHRYGIAN DOMINANT!"
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  7. #6
    b9 is mostly a phrygian passing note.
    I can’t think of any extended m7b9 vamps.

  8. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    This is a very general query but in what context might you use this chord?
    Having both a -3 and a -9 in a vertical structure is a sure path to unemployment. It does not sound good because it breaks the overtone series.


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  9. #8
    Sure, Phrygian , but it also gives access to second-degree melodic minor as an option.

    Reg-centric viewpoint might be A-7b9 gives you "access to" Lydian dominant a third above...an outside, blue-note reference from which to target your A-7 chord. The b9 also "opens doors" for "access to" using Dorian b9 to play over A as a DOMINANT chord - within that mode - or to modal interchange with A altered.

    Down a third from A is F# super Locrian, which gives you "access to" F#-7b5 vocabulary from altered and F#7alt dominant vocabulary to target your Am7 chord.

    The real world answer is that this mode is little used, but playing around with it by borrowing from these other areas helps you at least learn to hear some of it. It's probably most useful to think of this chord as an upper diatonic relationship to altered or lower diatonic relationship to Lydian dominant.

  10. #9
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    To me, Amin7b9 is most likely, simply FMaj7/A, until proved otherwise.
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  11. #10
    Yeah. Chords don't generally happen in a vacuum .

    It's pretty helpful to practice soloing over individual chords a good bit, but most real world music is about context.

    If you want to develop or experiment with vocabulary and voicings around this sound from melodic minor, start with C7 Lydian dominant sounds over Am. Pretty easy to hear starting point. Then, try to resolve to.... and make A minor your tonal center.

    Then, do similar with F sharp altered.

    You can do the same with Phrygian , by developing Ionian voicings and vocabulary down the third or mixolydian up a third but target phrygian.

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    This is a very general query but in what context might you use this chord?
    How about you give us the context where you encountered it and then we can talk about it? Absent that, I'd say literally any chord could be used in any context depending on what sound you're trying to make. More narrowly, I can imagine playing a min9 chord, and moving the top voice chromatically down to a 1 (8ve), passing through the b9 en route to landing on a min or min7. But I probably wouldn't just hang out on a min7b9 chord unless I was trying to be dissonant.

    John

  13. #12
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    The case can be made that Phrygian is the most metal of scales!

    Build bridges, not walls.

  14. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    This is a very general query but in what context might you use this chord?
    Apparently not many of us would! The m7b9 is rare but exists as an altered chord.

    It could be played c5354x (Dm7b9) and resolved to x3243x (CM9) which is sort of okay if you don't mind the sound.

    In other words it could be used as a Dm7 with the added Eb supplying a passing note in a logical sequence.

    The same notes could also be seen as a Cm11 or Eb6 over D. Or Or maybe as a rootless G7#5sus. Treated as a Cm11/D it could resolve to x1323x (BbM7).

    If you have to solo over it use Bb major aka D Phrygian. That gives all the right notes.

  15. #14

    susb9

    i know you asked about m7b9 well thats Emin in CMaj but not so easily handled.

    Now a sus chord with a b9, sounds good and is very usable, eg Gsusb9
    depending how you finger ( or leave out) is Ab lydian they are neigbours,
    it really captures Phrygian,

    hey did you say it is also Bb13..................... no i made that up

  16. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by John A. View Post
    How about you give us the context where you encountered it and then we can talk about it? Absent that, I'd say literally any chord could be used in any context depending on what sound you're trying to make. More narrowly, I can imagine playing a min9 chord, and moving the top voice chromatically down to a 1 (8ve), passing through the b9 en route to landing on a min or min7. But I probably wouldn't just hang out on a min7b9 chord unless I was trying to be dissonant.

    John
    To be honest, I haven't encountered the chord in a tune or anything. I was just noodling around and noticed that I hadn't really used that chord before (besides maybe using the b9 as a passing tone). Was just curious to see if there was an obvious use for it that I was missing.

  17. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Sure, Phrygian , but it also gives access to second-degree melodic minor as an option.

    Reg-centric viewpoint might be A-7b9 gives you "access to" Lydian dominant a third above...an outside, blue-note reference from which to target your A-7 chord. The b9 also "opens doors" for "access to" using Dorian b9 to play over A as a DOMINANT chord - within that mode - or to modal interchange with A altered.

    Down a third from A is F# super Locrian, which gives you "access to" F#-7b5 vocabulary from altered and F#7alt dominant vocabulary to target your Am7 chord.

    The real world answer is that this mode is little used, but playing around with it by borrowing from these other areas helps you at least learn to hear some of it. It's probably most useful to think of this chord as an upper diatonic relationship to altered or lower diatonic relationship to Lydian dominant.
    I appreciate the answer! I'm just trying to wrap my head around this now. Modes sometimes turn my brain to mush.

  18. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by bako View Post
    b9 is mostly a phrygian passing note.
    I can’t think of any extended m7b9 vamps.
    I wouldn't wish a m7b9 vamp on my worst enemy.

  19. #18
    m7b9 is a dissonant sound. In a primarily consonant environment where dissonance quickly resolves,
    that is what is likely for this chord to do. In an environment of sustained crunchiness, this chord can
    hang around a bit longer.

  20. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    I appreciate the answer! I'm just trying to wrap my head around this now. Modes sometimes turn my brain to mush.
    Sure. Most of us as well. Taking things up or down a third is a great every point to more practical usages that don't do the brain fatigue thing as much. A phrygian is easier to hear as Fmaj7 over Am or C9 over Am in the beginning.

    A-7b9 isn't used much, but C9 type voicings over open A will soften it considerably and give your ear a starting context for hearing possible chord movements etc.

  21. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    To be honest, I haven't encountered the chord in a tune or anything.
    That’s because it sounds like shite.

  22. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by grahambop View Post
    That’s because it sounds like shite.
    I'm starting to think it can actually sound cool in a flamenco way.

    Arpeggiate it!

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  23. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by YomGuitar View Post
    To be honest, I haven't encountered the chord in a tune or anything. I was just noodling around and noticed that I hadn't really used that chord before (besides maybe using the b9 as a passing tone). Was just curious to see if there was an obvious use for it that I was missing.
    I can't think of a tune off the top of my head that has that chord written in it, but you could use it as a sub. For instance, the first two bars of Laura are | A-9 | D7b9 |. The melody moves between B and A# over that change. You could play it with an A- pedal point and ignore ignore the b9 of D7, and you'd kind of have | A-9 | A-9b5|. Decide for yourself how it sounds.

    John

  24. #23
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    It's hard to weigh in on a thread about something that never gets used ever.

  25. #24
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    Gm7b9 sounds like Bb7 with the 7th in the bass.

  26. #25
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    Rick Beato likes his Phrygian. Plays some funky chords here.

    Last edited by BigDaddyLoveHandles; 10-20-2018 at 03:31 PM.
    Build bridges, not walls.

  27. #26

    The 7 flat 9 chord in the context of the Harmonized Minor Scale and Chords in A Minor

    See attachment
    Attached Images Attached Images

  28. #27
    It does not sound so unfamiliar to me... have a feeling I heard it here in various ways... a long time ago.

    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  29. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by pauln View Post
    It does not sound so unfamiliar to me... have a feeling I heard it here in various ways... a long time ago.

    Loved that album. And here's a comment from the YouTube page:

    When I saw the Mahavishnu Orchestra perform this piece I had no idea who John McLaughlin was, or Narada Michael Walden, or Billy Cobham, or Jean Luc Ponty. My jaw dropped & I forgot to smoke my weed!
    Build bridges, not walls.

  30. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by pauln View Post
    It does not sound so unfamiliar to me... have a feeling I heard it here in various ways... a long time ago.

    Cool, I'll have a listen to this afterwards. I've only heard their first two albums.

  31. #30
    Puzzle Of The Week: Spot the m7b9 chord in a video 52 minutes long

  32. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    Puzzle Of The Week: Spot the m7b9 chord in a video 52 minutes long
    Mebbe they hold onto it for 18 minutes.
    Build bridges, not walls.

  33. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by ragman1 View Post
    Puzzle Of The Week: Spot the m7b9 chord in a video 52 minutes long
    It’s conceivable that that collection of pitches may “work” if the -9 two or more octaves away from the root, but otherwise the m7-9 chord is not a good sounding collection of intervals.


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