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How to play the Ebaug chord on guitar

Unleash the haunting sound heard in "Creep" by Radiohead and "Dust in the Wind" by Kansas.

The Ebaug chord

The Ebaug chord, pronounced E-flat augmented, is a unique and intriguing chord that adds a sense of tension and mystery to musical compositions. Notable for its dissonant sound, the Ebaug chord is created by raising the fifth note of an Eb major chord by a half step. This chord is often used in jazz, classical, and film music to create suspense or a dreamlike atmosphere.

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

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Finger placement for Ebaug chord

The most common way to play the Ebaug chord on guitar is as a barre chord on the 6th fret.

Follow these finger positions to play a Ebaug chord on your guitar:

  1. Place your index finger across all six strings on the 6th fret, creating a barre chord.
  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, use your pick or thumb to strum all six strings simultaneously, ensuring each string rings out clearly.

How to play an easy Ebaug chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the Ebaug chord, try this open voicing:

  • Place your index finger on the 1st fret of the G string
  • Leave the D, A, and high E strings open
  • Strum only these four strings

This voicing captures the essential notes of Ebaug without requiring tricky fingerings or barring.

How to play a Ebaug bar chord

Sorry, there is no standard barre chord version of Ebaug that I'm confident enough to recommend. The Ebaug chord is quite rare and tricky to play on guitar, typically requiring more advanced fingerings or open string voicings.

Common Ebaug chord progressions

The Ebaug chord, also known as the augmented chord built on the mediant (iii+), adds a sense of tension, dissonance, and mystery to chord progressions. It is often used as a passing chord or to create a momentary suspense before resolving to a more stable harmony. Here are some common chord progressions featuring the Ebaug chord:

  • I - Ebaug - vi - IV (C - Ebaug - Am - F)
  • I - Ebaug - IV - V (C - Ebaug - F - G)
  • vi - Ebaug - I - V (Am - Ebaug - C - G)
  • iii - Ebaug - vi - ii (Em - Ebaug - Am - Dm)
  • IV - Ebaug - I - V (F - Ebaug - C - G) Used in "Michelle" by The Beatles

Drills to master the Ebaug chord

Mastering the Ebaug Guitar Chord

To master the Ebaug chord, try playing the individual notes (Eb, G, and B) separately, focusing on clean and clear sound. Once comfortable, practice transitioning between the Ebaug chord and other common chords like C, F, and G7.

Another helpful drill is to play the Ebaug chord in different rhythmic patterns, such as quarter notes, eighth notes, and syncopated rhythms. This will help develop muscle memory and make the chord feel more natural in various musical contexts.

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Songs that feature the Ebaug chord

Here are 10 popular songs you can play with the Ebaug chord.

  1. Creep by Radiohead (G, B, C, Cm)
  2. Runaway Train by Soul Asylum (Cadd9, G, D, Em7, Dsus2)
  3. Lightning Crashes by Live (Am, Em, Dsus2, Cadd9)
  4. I Will Follow You Into the Dark by Death Cab for Cutie (Em, G, D, C)
  5. Disarm by The Smashing Pumpkins (Em, D, C, G)
  6. Black by Pearl Jam (Ebm, Abm, B, Ebm)
  7. Flowers in December by Mazzy Star
  8. Under the Bridge by Red Hot Chili Peppers (D, F#m, B7, G, A, E)
  9. Nothing Else Matters by Metallica (Em, D, C, G)
  10. Nutshell by Alice in Chains (Em, G, D5, C5, B5)

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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