Add9 chords

The add9 chord is a major chord with the ninth tone in the scale added. If we take the C major chord as an example, it consists of C, E and G. If we add a D we have a Cadd9 chord with the notes C, E, G and D.

You must separate this chord from the Dominant ninths that are written like C9. The difference is that a dominant 9th is made by adding the ninth to a seventh chord, like C, E, G, Bb and D forms a C9. In an add9 chord the seventh is missing.



  • Cadd9 chord diagram


  • Dadd9 chord diagram


  • Eadd9 chord diagram


  • Fadd9 chord diagram


  • Gadd9 chord diagram


  • Aadd9 chord diagram


  • Badd9 chord diagram

Chord progressions with add9 chord

Add9 chords aren't one of the most common chord categories, but they truly exist in lots of songs. A very nice sequence could be found by varying Cadd9 with a G major. You could when for example add a D major and you get something like this (used in the Green Day song "Time of Your life"):

G – Cadd9 – D

Another chord progression, including Dadd9:

G – C – Dadd9 – D7/F# – G

Minor add chords

Less common is the minor add chords. We can compare add9 and madd9 to see what notes are different. In Cadd9 we have C, E, G and D in comparison with Cmadd9 with C, Eb, G and D.


  • Cmadd9 chord diagram


  • Dmadd9 chord diagram


  • Emadd9 chord diagram


  • Fmadd9 chord diagram


  • Gmadd9 chord diagram


  • Amadd9 chord diagram


  • Bmadd9 chord diagram


The presented diagrams are mixed with both open shapes and a barre form (Amadd9 and Bmadd9). The latter is movable and based on the Emadd shape.

Chord progressions

An example is:

Emadd9 – Am9 – Dsus2 – G6

A suggestion is to play Am9 as X05500.

Sus add chords

Since add and sus chords can be close related, and in fact be identical in some occasions, are chord names sometimes written as sus (add9).

See also Add2 chords.