Here’s the previous jazz 7th chords lesson I refer to in the video
In this lesson, we will look at Major 7th chord inversions on the guitar, and how they can be moved to various positions on the fretboard.
A Major 7th chord is made up of the Root, 3rd, 5th, and 7th of a major scale. In this case, I’m using GMa7 as an example (G-B-D-F#). There are four possible “bass positions” (four possible notes as the lowest sound over which the chord is stacked). The four bass positions are Root Position, 1st Inversion, 2nd Inversion, and 3rd Inversion.
Root position is when G, the root, is in the lowest position (a.k.a. “the bass”). On top of the G bass note, the other 3 notes (B, D, and F#) are stacked in any order the guitarist wants, as long as they are all represented. I’ve chosen one possibility in the tabs linked above, but there are many, many, many possibilities if you experiment enough.
The 3rd of the chord – B – is in the bass note position, and the remaining 3 notes (G, D, F#) are stacked on top, again, in whatever order fits well on the fretboard.
The 5th of the chord – D – is in the bass position, and the remaining 3 notes (G, B, F#) are stacked on top in any order.
The 7th of the chord – F# – is in the bass position, and the remaining 3 notes (G, B, D) are stacked on top in any order.
Understanding the concept of chord inversions is a huge undertaking. For right now, just try to grasp the basic idea of A) Chords have multiple notes that make up the chord, and B) they can be switched around however the guitarist wants, as long as they are all present. So, G-B-D-F# is a GMa7 chord, and it doesn’t matter which order they are presented on the guitar – if all 4 of those notes are in a chord, it’s a GMa7 chord.
– Nate Richards
Owner – Richards Guitar Studio