The major 7th chord, the Bill Murray of chords: relaxed, warm and comfortable in its skin

Banditt

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1,169
The "shape" of the maj7 chord arpeggios and triad is very cool sounding over a related minor chord...the ear just seems to "hear" that shape...I find it very useful to use the maj7 shape to "un-pentatonic" your lines when playing in a minor blues or funk groove.

Ex.: Next time you are wailing over a Bm groove a short quick gmaj7 arpeggio or chord triad just adds a cool vibe. Playing a dmaj7 arp/chord gives you that maj9 sound. If you are trying to go a little "outside" on a long minor chord vamp, play the Bm pentatonic then slide up one fret and play a descending C maj arpeggio.

The chord can be very useful in many other ways other than the obvious...
 
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JimInMO

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55
Johnny Rivers "Poor Side Of Town" was my introduction to it. I frequently use it as a passing chord I to maj7 to dominant 7th to IV
 

Darl

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1,957
But the maj7 that matters most to me personally is in the Smith's How Soon Is Now. Dmaj7 comes in on "you shut your mouth how can you say". Doesn't get better than that for me.
 

gennation

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7,492
Before the maj7 chord became popular, the "6" chord was the go-to for the (non-dominant) major chord extension.

The maj7 evolved into it's standard through, ummm, standards of jazz tunes lifted from show tunes. Some of the early standards used the I6 chord as the I chord as opposed to the Imaj7.
 

gennation

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7,492
The place most younger rock fans will find the maj7 chord is in Under the Bridge by The Red Hot Chilli Peppers. Right after he sings "together we'll climb" they hold an Ebmaj7 chord for two bars.

Should start just before the chord...

 




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