Get Lucky – Bet on 13th Chords

Get lucky and win with 13th chords

When it comes to blues, jazz and sophisticated pop songs, 13 is a lucky number. Harmonically, if you count the numbers in the major scale, when you reach 13 and use it in your chord, you will get lucky. Why? Because you will get a great, classy sound when you use 13th chords.

Let's count in the key of C major:  1-C, 2-D, 3-E, 4-F, 5-G, 6-A, 7-B, 8 (octave) C, 9-D, 10-E, 11-F, 12-G and 13-A.  So when you play your typical C7 chord, usually a combination of the notes C-E-G-Bb, throw in an A and now you have a 13th chord.

Counting cards and counting notes help you get lucky

You probably noticed that when you counted the notes in the C major scale that the A is also the sixth of the chord.  Thinking about all of these numbers can be confusing, but don't let them intimidate you. You will get the hang of it once you start analyzing the structure of your chords. The way I look at it is: if I use an A in a C major chord, I think of the A as a 6th. But as soon as I have a Bb in there, that A become a 13th.

You also get lucky because In the C13 chord, that A gives you a nice funky sound because it creates dissonance when it is played against the Bb. This is know as a close interval. You can mix the notes up so the A and Bb aren't right next to each other and it will give your chord different shades.

You can't lose with 13th chords

You will get lucky with these chords because they are versatile and distinctive - and you'll sound like a genius when you play them. In the video I introduce some fingerings for 13th chords to get you started. Experiment with different voicings on your own and you will find some interesting, great sounding chords. Try playing some 13th chords and get lucky!

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