So why is it called E13/b9?

So why is it called E13/b9?

Good question.

If we look at the complete Chord E13 the notes are:

NOTES:          (E), G#,  (B),  D,   (F#), (A), C#

INTERVALS: (R),  3,     (5),  b7,  (9),   (11), 13

(Notes in brackets aren’t needed to imply chord colour when playing. I’ll come back to this concept later.)

So if we look at the strings and now we should be able to see as notes/intervals as follows.

  1. G# – 3rd
  2. F# – 9th
  3. E – Root
  4. C# – 13th
  5. B – 5th
  6. G# – 3rd
  7. F# – 9th
  8. E – Root
  9. D – b7th
  10. B – 5th
  11. G# – 3rd
  12. F – b9



So why is it written E13/b9. Anytime we see a slash (/) in a chord name. The note after the /  is played on the lowest string.

Thus the F is on my 12th string it is also a note not originally included when making an E13 chord. So E13/b9 describes this tuning.

Its tuning centre is the root notes. All other notes gravitate towards the centre, any “outside” notes potentially pull away from the Centre. i.e. the F on string 12. If you strum from strings 11 – 1 you will feel this pull towards an E. As soon as you hit the low F it moves it away.