The E Minor 9 Chord

E minor ninth, commonly abbreviated as Em9, is a five-note chord composed of root, major third, perfect fifth and minor seventh tones.

Modified notes are an integral component of chord building, used to change both its tone and function.


The E minor 9 chord is a five-note composition consisting of E, G, B, D and F# notes that creates an arrestingly dark yet beautiful sound. Built using interval structures like 1m3b5b7 9 this chord can be made using any note in any major scale or any minor scale scales as its basis for formation.

Intervals within this chord may sound dissonant at first listen, yet when played together as part of a whole chord it creates beautiful harmony. This chord can add color and vibrancy to a melody or harmony by providing different texture to music as it fits well with many other chords; particularly minor seventh chords and dominant seventh chords.

An interesting characteristic of this chord is its minor third interval, which lends it an unusually sad tone compared to typical chords which feature major third intervals which create happier sounds. Minor third intervals do not produce consonant sounds as do major third intervals; hence their distinction from major third intervals.

This chord can sometimes be referred to as Em9/7; however, in this system it would be more accurate to refer to it as a minor ninth chord due to its true interval name. When used on guitar this chord requires baring the sixth string with one finger; therefore making it difficult to play and requiring considerable stretching.

There are other voicings for this chord, primarily those based on placing its root note on the fifth string and dropping the fifth note altogether. These variations tend to be used more in jazz music than classical.

As it’s important to keep in mind, working with intervals is distinct from being in a particular key or mode. Your intervals are defined by starting notes and any modifications made; signs like min, # and flat b simply modify default intervals – for instance a minor ninth is lower than its major nine counterpart due to having a flat sign on it.


Scales in music represent a series of notes arranged an octave above their predecessor. Chords are collections of these notes played together – they can be major, minor, perfect, diminished or augmented – and constructed by stacking triads (the initial three notes of any scale) one, two or three at a time until complete.

Most chords contain three components – a root, major third and perfect fifth – but some – such as the E minor ninth chord – feature additional notes beyond this trio, including E, G and B notes from E minor scale. It boasts an expansive sound that is often utilized in songs like America’s classic A Horse With No Name.

In order to play an E minor ninth chord, your fingers should be arranged like the frets of a pentatonic scale. To do this, position them at the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth frets on your guitar and position your fingers accordingly. In order to master all nine notes effectively and consistently over time, practice is key!

There are multiple approaches to playing this chord, but one way is to start by learning its root note in E minor scale, E. Once this step has been accomplished, learn all necessary intervals needed for creating this chord and use a chord chart as a learning aid on your guitar fretboard.

The E minor ninth chord is a five-note chord that can be played either omitted or inverted notes. It contains E, G, B, D and F# notes with an interval structure of 1m3 5b7 9. This means it builds off of a minor chord but adds the b7th and 9th notes for an interesting sounding soundscape.

The E Minor Ninth chord is an excellent way to expand your repertoire and add something special to any song. With its distinct sound, this chord stands out as something truly original that you’ll want to include as part of any composition, especially country and rock music – though jazz musicians can use this chord too!


The e minor 9 chord is one of the most versatile chords in music, appearing frequently and versatilely across genres and musical forms. Examples include Stevie Wonder’s “Too High”, Jeff Beck’s “Because We’ve Ended Now as Lovers”, and Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together”. It is a variant of minor 7th add 9, sharing its interval structure but with an added ninth to create a dark and moody sound characteristic of many genres of music.

It is a five note chord containing roots, minor thirds, perfect fifths, major sevenths and major ninths of the E minor scale in its most straightforward version. However, this chord can also be played without its fifth note, often used with chords wherein their ninth note exceeds octave level; this type of arrangement is called an all-interval tetrachord and it is widely employed across blues, rock and jazz music genres.

Chords featuring five or more notes are commonly known as dominant chords; however, that term can be misleading as these types of chords also derive from triads. A chord may contain more than one type of interval and therefore there can be many distinct types of dominant chords; an example being an e minor 9 chord which can be constructed using various chord shapes.

A minor add 9 chord is the most widely known form, featuring E, G, B, D and F# as its components. The Emadd9 guitar chord has an emotional sound found across genres. There are different voicings of this chord as well; including versions that omit its fifth note altogether or place it in second-degree position.

These chords do not strictly fall under the category of diminished chords because there is no minor seventh present; however, their shape and fingering is similar to other diminished chords. E minor add 9 is an invaluable chord to learn as its sound has an original and versatile aesthetic.


Addition of a ninth to any chord adds a unique sound, and Em9 stands out by having an earthy and deep sound. One of the more difficult chords to learn, but also very versatile: used either as a ii or vi chord and working well with bass notes on fourth strings (Cm9) as well as dominant 9th chord (although you will need to alter its shape slightly).

Music theory dictates that chords are formed by stacking thirds. The initial three notes form a triad, which may be major, minor, perfect, diminished or augmented; when adding another third this creates the seventh; adding fifth brings forth nine. While both seventh and ninth intervals can seem dissonant at first listen, when played together they create very interesting harmonically complex soundscapes – which is how an e minor 9 chord came to exist!

Dominant 9th chords are five-note chords whose ninth note occurs one octave away from their roots, making them difficult to play unmodified without modification; therefore, typically these chords will look something like Em9(no3), Emin9 and Em9. For instance, an E minor 9 chord will look something like Em9(no3), Emin9 and Em9.

Minor ninth chords are an integral component of jazz music, appearing across genres and with its own distinctive sound. Played both open position and barre chord style, its flexible shapes allow it to produce various sounds on the fretboard for various sounds and harmonies.

The ii7b variation of the Em9 is another popular chord, though more complicated to play than its standard equivalent. However, its distinctive sound makes it versatile enough for use in numerous songs; especially popular in funk and soul music as Al Green used this chord in his hit “Let’s Stay Together”.

The E minor 9 chord can be enhanced significantly when played as the ii7b version on the second string with its root placed at fret 2, creating an unforgettable harmony when combined with its companion chord ii7 on strings one and three in its key.