Minor 6th Chords (m6) | Guitar Chord Shapes and Voicing Charts
What's a Minor 6th Chord ?
A minor 6th chord is built with four notes. It is a minor triad (1 b3 5) with a 6th added giving the interval pattern:
- Root (1)
- Minor third (b3)
- Perfect fifth (5)
- Sixth (6)
Chord Symbols and Notation
Minor 6 chords can be written m6, -6 or min6.
In comparison with major 6 chords, minor 6 have a minor third (b3) instead of a major third (3).
Exemple with C minor, the sixth (A) is added to the C minor triad (C-Eb-G). So, Cm6 is built with C, Eb, G and A).
|C minor 6||C||Eb||G||A|
|C major 6||C||E||G||A|
Minor seventh chord formula is 1 - b3 - 5 - b7 whereas minor 6 is 1 - b3 - 5 - 6. In other words, to build a minor 6 chord from a minor seventh chord, you just have to lower the minor seventh with a semitone.
|C minor 6||C||Eb||G||A|
|C minor 7||C||Eb||G||Bb|
One interesting and useful thing to know about minor 6 chords is that they contain the same notes a m7b5 voicing. Indeed, a half-diminished chord is built the same as a minor 6 chord three semitones higher.
The chart below show the 4 voicings related to the 12 minor 6 guitar chord shapes below. These positions are based on the drop 2 minor seventh guitar chords. By comparing them, you will see that the sixth has simply replaced the minor seventh.
|1st inversion (third in the bass)||b3||6||R||5|
|2nd inversion (fifth in the bass)||5||R||b3||6|
|3rd inversion (sixth in the bass)||6||b3||5||R|
Here are 2 guitar neck diagrams with four drop 3 minor 6 shapes.
|1st inversion (third in the bass)||b3||R||5||6|
|2nd inversion (fifth in the bass)||5||b3||6||R|
|3rd inversion (sixth in the bass)||6||5||R||b3|
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Last edited: 05/11/2020