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What is a Major 9th arpeggio?

Major 9th arpeggios are a great alternative to regular Maj7 guitar arpeggios for some extra Pi-zazz and Dazzle. 

But what are they exactly?


They contain the root, major 3rd, 5th, major 7th and major 9th scale degrees. See the table below:

They are simply an extension of the Major 7th arpeggio, where we have added one more 3rd interval:

What Are The Guitar Shapes For This Arpeggio? 

Here are 5 CAGED shapes of Major 9th Arpeggio, which, when linked together, cover the whole fretboard of the guitar.

It’s very useful to learn more than one shape of any arpeggio, chord or scale you’re playing. This helps us to be ready in a variety of musical situations, as well as to better connect them to what we already know in other areas of the guitar. 

Playing Major 9th Arpeggio Over Chord Progressions

Let’s look at how to actually use Major 9th arpeggios over guitar chord progressions.

We usually play them in order, starting from and ending on the root. Starting from a D note, the first shape played this way would look like this:

Let’s try this over a II V I progression in the key of D Major. 

We’re going to be using an Em7 arpeggio, plus an A7 arpeggio, leading up to the D Major 9th. 

Finally, here’s a backing track you can practise the above arpeggio shapes over:

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