How to play

How to play the Fmaj13 chord on guitar

Learn to play the dreamy chord from "Wonderwall" and "Stairway to Heaven."

The Fmaj13 chord

The Fmaj13 chord, pronounced "F major thirteenth," is a sophisticated and jazzy voicing that adds depth and complexity to the standard F major triad. Notable for its lush, expansive sound, the Fmaj13 incorporates the 7th, 9th, 11th, and 13th notes of the F major scale. This chord is commonly used in jazz, funk, and R&B to create rich harmonic progressions and smooth transitions between chords.

There are many ways to play a chord. Here's a diagram for the most common Fmaj13 chord. We've also included other versions below.

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Finger placement for Fmaj13 chord

The most common way to play the Fmaj13 chord on guitar is as a barre chord on the 1st fret.

Follow these finger positions to play a Fmaj13 chord on your guitar:

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

To strum this chord, place your fingers in the correct positions and strum all six strings together in a downward motion.

How to play an easy Fmaj13 chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the Fmaj13 chord, try this:

  1. Play a regular F major chord.
  2. Remove your middle finger from the 2nd string.
  3. Strum all six strings.

This voicing omits the 7th and 9th but still captures the essence of the Fmaj13 chord.

How to play a Fmaj13 bar chord

Playing the Fmaj13 chord as a barre chord can be a great way to add variety and fullness to your guitar playing. It's a more advanced voicing that can really enrich your sound.

Here's how to play a Fmaj13 bar chord:

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

Common Fmaj13 chord progressions

The Fmaj13 chord is often used in jazz and neo-soul progressions to add a dreamy, sophisticated, and slightly melancholic feel. Here are some common chord progressions featuring the Fmaj13 chord:

  • I - iii - vi - Fmaj13 (F - Am - Dm - Fmaj13)
  • ii - V7 - I - Fmaj13 (Gm7 - C7 - F - Fmaj13)
  • iii - vi - ii - Fmaj13 (Am - Dm - Gm - Fmaj13)
  • vi - ii - Fmaj13 - V7 (Dm - Gm - Fmaj13 - C7)
  • I - vi - Fmaj13 - V7sus4 (F - Dm - Fmaj13 - C7sus4)

Drills to master the Fmaj13 chord

To master the Fmaj13 chord, try this simple drill: play each note of the chord individually, starting from the lowest and moving to the highest. Focus on clarity and precision as you pluck each string. Once you've played all six notes, strum the full chord, letting each note ring out simultaneously.

Another effective drill is to practice transitioning to and from the Fmaj13 chord. Choose a simple progression, such as F - C - Fmaj13 - C, and play it slowly at first, ensuring clean transitions between each chord. Gradually increase your speed as you become more comfortable with the changes.

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Songs that feature the Fmaj13 chord

Here are 10 popular songs you can play with the Fmaj13 chord.

  1. Desperado by Eagles (F, Fmaj7, Fmaj13, Dm7, G13)
  2. Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin (Am, G, Fmaj13, Am)
  3. Hotel California by Eagles (Bm, F#, A, E, G, D, Em, F#m, Fmaj13)
  4. Night Moves by Bob Seger (G, Fmaj13, C, D)
  5. The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra (Fmaj13, E7, Am, D7, Gm7, C7)
  6. Tears in Heaven by Eric Clapton (A, E, D, A7, Dmaj7, Bm7, Fmaj13, G)
  7. Beauty and the Beast by Angela Lansbury (F, Fmaj13, Gm7, C7)
  8. I Won't Last a Day Without You by The Carpenters (Fmaj13, Dm7, Gm7, C7)
  9. Misty by Ella Fitzgerald (Fmaj13, E7, Am7, D7, Gm7, C7)
  10. When I Fall in Love by Nat King Cole (Fmaj13, Fm7, Em7, Ebdim7, Dm7, G7, Cmaj7)

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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