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How to play the Gmaj7#5 chord on guitar

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The Gmaj7#5 chord

The Gmaj7#5 chord, pronounced "G major seven sharp five," is a unique and somewhat uncommon guitar chord. It's characterized by its blend of major seventh and augmented fifth intervals, creating a vibrant, jazzy sound. While not as prevalent as its cousin, the Gmaj7 chord, the Gmaj7#5 can add an interesting flavor to jazz, fusion, and even some pop and rock music.

There are many ways to play a chord. Here's a diagram for the most common Gmaj7#5 chord. We've also included other versions below.

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Finger placement for Gmaj7#5 chord

The Gmaj7#5 chord is typically played as a barre chord on the 3rd fret of the guitar.

Follow these finger positions to play a Gmaj7#5 chord on your guitar:

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

To strum this chord, start by playing all six strings together in a downward motion. You can then alternate between downward and upward strums to create a rhythm pattern.

How to play an easy Gmaj7#5 chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the Gmaj7#5 chord, try this:

  1. Place your middle finger on the 3rd fret of the 1st (high E) string.
  2. Place your ring finger on the 4th fret of the 2nd (B) string.
  3. Strum only these two strings together.

This two-note version will still give you the essential sound of the Gmaj7#5 chord.

How to play a Gmaj7#5 bar chord

Learning to play the Gmaj7#5 chord as a barre chord can be useful for quickly changing to other chords in the same key or for getting a fuller sound.

Here's how to play a Gmaj7#5 barre chord:

  1. Place your index finger across all six strings at the 4th fret, creating a 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 all six strings from low to high.

Common Gmaj7#5 chord progressions

The Gmaj7#5 chord adds a dreamy, ethereal quality to progressions, often providing a sense of floating or suspension. Some common chord progressions featuring Gmaj7#5 include:

  • I - IV - Imaj7#5 - IV (G - C - Gmaj7#5 - C)
  • vi - Imaj7#5 - IV - V (Em - Gmaj7#5 - C - D)
  • ii - V - Imaj7#5 (Am - D - Gmaj7#5) Used in "Fragile" by Sting
  • Imaj7#5 - vi - ii - V (Gmaj7#5 - Em - Am - D)
  • I - Imaj7#5 - vi - IV (G - Gmaj7#5 - Em - C)

Drills to master the Gmaj7#5 chord

To master the Gmaj7#5 chord, try playing the individual notes (G, B, D#, F#) one at a time, focusing on each note's clarity. Once comfortable, practice transitioning between the notes in different orders.

Another helpful drill is to play the chord in various rhythmic patterns, such as quarter notes, eighth notes, or even syncopated rhythms. This will help your fingers develop muscle memory and make the chord feel more natural to play. Experiment with different strumming patterns to add variety to your practice routine.

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Songs that feature the Gmaj7#5 chord

Here are 5 popular songs you can play with the Gmaj7#5 chord.

  1. All of Me by John Legend (G, Gmaj7#5, Em7, Am7, D7/F#, Cmaj7, Cm7, Bm7, Bbmaj7)
  2. Gravity by John Mayer
  3. Mirrors by Justin Timberlake
  4. PYT (Pretty Young Thing) by Michael Jackson
  5. Isn't She Lovely by Stevie Wonder (D, G, Gmaj7#5, Bm7, Am7)

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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