What chord is 1 3 6 M7? i.e. C E A B

The simplest name for the notes is Amadd9.

But it functions as a C chord, with a C bass. And it's not a suspension as such, in that the 6 doesn't resolve to the 5. What I'm looking for in a name, if there is one, is a name which will enable people sight-reading jazz/pop chord slash charts at tempo to get the chord correct. The guitar version is x 3 2 2 0 x in first position, 8 x 9 9 10 x with the root on the low E string.

Emsus4/C? CM7sus6? Something else? Nothing?

  • 1
    If it is acting as a C chord, probably CM13 is best.
    – user39614
    Nov 27, 2021 at 1:37
  • I’m voting to close this question because the answer is a duplicate of that to the more general question what is the method behind naming jazz chords?.
    – Aaron
    Nov 27, 2021 at 1:55
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    @KFW The answer doesn't really depend on whether it's jazz or any other genre; but since it's not jazz, you might do well to take the reference to it out of your post. As written, your post suggests that jazz musicians may be reading your chart: i.e., bringing their own knowledge, experience, and assumptions about chord symbols to reading your piece. Same would be true for pop musicians, who generally follow the same conventions as jazz.
    – Aaron
    Nov 27, 2021 at 2:59
  • 3
    Chord symbols are interpreted within a given style, which can even vary from an artist to another. It's not really something characteristic to "jazz theory". If you need musicians to play the exact notes you want, perhaps better to notate it in the staff. Nov 27, 2021 at 6:19
  • 1
    Having a bit more of a context might help, if not by "naming" the chord, at least understanding its function. You claim it's a "C" chord, but considering that the notes for the guitar have 3 E (with the first on the bass) and just one C, and that it's not similar to any "standard" transposed C chord, that seems unlikely. When does this chord happen? At what point of the progression? What follows it? What is the key of the piece? Nov 27, 2021 at 14:08

2 Answers 2


If you write Am(add9)/C you’ll probably get the right notes played. If you want a functional harmonic analysis you’ll need to show us the context.


I'm closing the question with the answer "there isn't a simple name for that - you have to name it note by note, one way or another." I can find names for chords with AT LEAST these notes in them, but not JUST these notes. The missing fifth seems to rule out any common name without "no 5" in it. And while seconds are fairly common intervals in complex chords, 6 and major 7 together aren't common enough to have a name other than 13, which too often implies 9 and/or 11 as well.

I'm settling for Csus6maj7. Ugly as sin, but more or less correct. It's the way it lays on a piano keyboard and the way it's fingered on guitar.

  • 2
    Uh, I don't think "sus6" would be understood the way you want. I think people would read "sus" and "6" separately, i.e. "replace 3 (most likely with 4)" and "add6", which is quite different from what the notes you requested. Nov 27, 2021 at 6:27

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