How to Play an E9 Chord on the Piano

Ninth Chords

Let’s look at how to play an E9 chord on the piano. We’ll also learn the pattern for building any other ninth chord.

What Are Ninth Chords?

A ninth chord is a major chord with two added notes. The added notes are the seventh note of the matching major scale, lowered 1/2 step, and the ninth note of the scale.

So to build a ninth chord, we’ll start by building a major chordMajor chords are built using the first, third and fifth notes of the matching major scale.

Next we’ll find the seventh note of the matching major scale and lower it 1/2 step.

Then we’ll add the ninth note of the scale to the chord. But since a scale only has eight notes, we’ll need to repeat the scale into the next octave to find the ninth note. The ninth note is the same as the second note of the scale, but one octave up.

piano chords chart pdf printable

Chord Types Printable

Learn to play 17 types of piano chords using 12 different root notes with this 35-page PDF! Chords are sorted both by their root note and type.

How to Play an E9 Chord

Now let’s build an E9 chord. First we’ll build an E major chord, using the first, third and fifth notes of the E major scale: E – G♯ – B.

Then we’ll add the seventh note of the E major scale, lowered 1/2 step: D

Then we’ll repeat the scale into the next octave to find the ninth note: F♯

So to play an E9 chord, we’ll play:

E – G♯ – B – D – F♯

e9 chord piano

Now you know how to play an E9 chord on the piano!

We can use this pattern to build any other ninth chord, by building a major chord using the first, third and fifth notes of the matching major scale. Then we can add the seventh note of the scale, lowered 1/2 step. Then we can repeat the scale into the next octave to find the ninth note.

Fingering

There are different ways to play ninth chords, since we can’t easily reach these notes in this order with one hand.

One option would be to play an E octave with your left hand, then play the rest of the notes with your right hand: G♯ – B – D – F♯ using fingers 1 – 2 – 3 – 5 (thumbs are 1’s).

Another option would be to play the notes in this order with your right hand: G♯ – B – D – E – F♯ using fingers 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5.

Other Chord Types

Some other chord types you can learn are:

Major
Minor
Augmented
Diminished
Second
Minor Second
Suspended
Fifth
Sixth
Minor Sixth
Seventh
Minor Seventh
Major Seventh
Minor Ninth
Major Ninth

Conclusion

Now you know how to play an E9 chord on the piano, and you can use this knowledge to build any other ninth chord!

Ninth chords sound really lovely because of the extra notes, so they can add some nice variety at the piano.

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