6/9 Chord / Music Theory Lesson

Author: sleepfreaks

About the 6/9 (six ninth) Chord

Up until this point, we have taken a look primarily at adding notes or changing orthodox chord shapes to explain new chords.
This time, we will make some adjustments to the sixth chord to take a look at the 6/9 (six ninth) chord. Lets see what sets it apart from a sixth chord and take a look.

How the 6/9 Chord Sounds

First, lets compare how the major 6th and the major 6/9 chords sound.
After the individual notes are played, the chord will sound.

  • C6
  • C6/9

The 6/9 chord has almost a thicker and wider sound to it.

How to Write the 6/9 Chord

The 6/9 chord will often be written as the following:


We will continue to use the 6/9 for the course of this article.

How to Make a 6/9 Chord

Now you may already have figured this out, but lets take a look at the major scale again to see how the 6/9 chord is made.


For the C6/9 chord, counting up from the root the 9th (M9th) note D will be added to a 6th chord.
Of course the lower D would also count.

Lets take a look on notation and the piano roll.


As seen, it is a chord that layers these 5 notes.

Using the 6/9 Chord

This time, lets hear the difference between a normal triad, 6th, and 6/9 chord in a II-V-I progression.

  • IIm7→V7→I Dm7→G7→C
  • IIm7→V7→I6 Dm7→G7→C6
  • IIm7→V7→I6/9 Dm7→G7→C6/9

Ending with a note that isn’t the root as a top note would be a good idea too. Try out various voicings and variations.

Minor 6/9 Chord

Last but not least lets take a look at the minor 6/9 chord.
The notes to look out for in the major and minor 6th chords were the 3rds.


This is the same for the 6/9 chord.
Lets compare the two.

  • Cm6
  • Cm6/9

If you could already picture how this may have sounded, your well on your way!
Lets take a look at the basic form of this chord on notation and the piano roll.


The minor sound gives it a suspicious sound.
If you come across it while analyzing music, be sure to check the context in which it’s being used.

Now, we will take a break from chords for a while and take a look at some different content in our next article.
Be sure to study up and stay tuned!

Article Writer: Kazuma Itoh

講師 伊藤
After moving to the USA at 18 years of age with a scholarship from Berklee, he completed a 4 year study focused on song writing and arranging there.
Using this knowledge, he works across a variety of fields from pop music, film music, and more.