How to play

How to play the Abmaj7#5 chord on guitar

Unleash the magic of songs like "Wonderwall" and "Blackbird" with this unique chord.

The Abmaj7#5 chord

The Abmaj7#5 chord, pronounced "A flat major seven sharp five," is a unique and intriguing chord. It features a raised fifth degree, giving it an augmented sound that adds tension and sophistication. This chord is often used in jazz, fusion, and even some progressive rock genres to create a sense of mystery and intrigue. Notable songs featuring Abmaj7#5 include "In a Silent Way" by Miles Davis.

There are many ways to play a chord. Here's a diagram for the most common Abmaj7#5 chord. We've also included other versions below.

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Finger placement for Abmaj7#5 chord

The most popular way to play the Abmaj7#5 chord on guitar is as a barre chord on the 6th fret.

Follow these finger positions to play a Abmaj7#5 chord on your guitar:

  1. Barre your index finger across all six strings on the 6th fret.
  2. Place your middle finger on the 7th fret of the 3rd (G) string.
  3. Place your ring finger on the 8th fret of the 5th (A) string.
  4. Place your pinky finger on the 8th fret of the 4th (D) string.

To strum this chord, play all six strings together in a downward motion with your pick or thumb. Be sure to apply firm pressure with your index finger to properly barre all the strings.

How to play an easy Abmaj7#5 chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the Abmaj7#5 chord, try playing an Ab major chord instead. Place your index finger on the 4th fret of the 2nd (B) string, middle finger on the 5th fret of the 4th (D) string, and ring finger on the 6th fret of the 3rd (G) string.

How to play a Abmaj7#5 bar chord

Playing the Abmaj7#5 chord as a barre chord allows you to easily transition between chords and change keys while maintaining a consistent chord shape.

Here's how to play an Abmaj7#5 barre chord:

  1. Place your index finger across the 4th fret, covering all six strings (barre).
  2. Place your middle finger on the 5th fret of the 3rd (G) string.
  3. Place your ring finger on the 6th fret of the 5th (A) string.
  4. Place your pinky finger on the 6th fret of the 4th (D) string.
  5. Strum from the 5th (A) string down.

Common Abmaj7#5 chord progressions

The Abmaj7#5 chord is often used in jazz progressions to add a sense of tension and sophistication. These progressions typically evoke a complex, introspective, and slightly unresolved emotional feel. Some common chord progressions featuring the Abmaj7#5 chord include:

  • ii - V - I - IV (Bbm7 - Eb7 - Abmaj7#5 - Dbmaj7)
  • I - vi - ii - V (Abmaj7#5 - Fm7 - Bbm7 - Eb7) Used in "Blue in Green" by Miles Davis
  • iii - vi - ii - V (Cm7 - Fm7 - Bbm7 - Eb7)
  • I - IV - vii° - iii (Abmaj7#5 - Dbmaj7 - G°7 - Cm7)
  • ii - V - I - vi (Bbm7 - Eb7 - Abmaj7#5 - Fm7)

Drills to master the Abmaj7#5 chord

To master the Abmaj7#5 chord, try playing the notes (Ab, C, E, G) in different orders as arpeggios. Start slowly and gradually increase your speed. This drill helps your fingers become familiar with the chord shape and improves dexterity.

Another effective drill is to practice transitioning to and from the Abmaj7#5 chord. Choose a progression that includes this chord, such as Abmaj7#5 - Db7 - Gbmaj7 - Bbm7. Focus on smooth transitions between chords while maintaining a steady rhythm. With consistent practice, you'll develop muscle memory and seamlessly incorporate the Abmaj7#5 chord into your playing.

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Songs that feature the Abmaj7#5 chord

Here are 4 popular songs you can play with the Abmaj7#5 chord.

  1. Comfortably Numb by Pink Floyd (B minor, A, G, D, C)
  2. Hey Nineteen by Steely Dan (D, G, Bm7, Abmaj7#5)
  3. Pyramid Song by Radiohead
  4. As Time Goes By by Frank Sinatra

How a guitar teacher can help

If you feel stuck in your playing, it might help to take personalized guitar lessons with an expert guitarist. Taking lessons with a pro gives you access to the skills, feedback, and motivation to reach your goals.

You can find expert guitar teachers to support you in the journey. Thousands of people have turned to online guitar lessons on Til, instead of traditional in-person lessons, because Til gives you access to the best teachers in the world from the comfort of home. And with flexible scheduling, secure payments, lesson recordings, and a private chat with your teacher–there’s never been a better way to learn guitar.

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