Em7/5+    I know Em7 is a minor 7th chord, but what does the /5+ mean? I thought that the slash would be followed by a root note other than the E, but I do not know what the 5+ indicates following the slash. Thanks.

  • Welcome to the site Rick. Please check and see if the question above answers your question as it is almost the same.
    – Dom
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 1:44
  • Yes, thanks, that helps. It seems there are many different ways of saying the same thing in musical notation, most of which has nothing to do with what I was taught in school.
    – Rick
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 2:44

1 Answer 1


This isn't standard notation. But we can try to work out what someone might have meant by it. Maybe the slash is an error, they just mean Em7+5. That's Em7 with a raised 5th. E, G, B# (Ok, call it C) D. Maybe they want the raised 5th to be the bass note, though it's hard to see why this wouldn't be written as C(add9). What comes before and after it? Are we doing the James Bond riff: Em, Em+, Em6, Em+ ? (Sounds a bit odd with the 7th in there though.) The lesson here is that someone has either tried to be clever, or has been sloppy, and no-one knows what he means. So don't do that!

  • It comes from "Cry Me A River" by Arthur Hamilton, from both the Susan Boyle and Julie London versions. I have seen in it a number of places, one is at pgmusic.com/forums/… Thank you. I think I understand now, but it is sure confusing. :(
    – Rick
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 2:45
  • 2
    @Rick: In this case it's a line cliché (referred to as James Bond riff in Laurence's answer).
    – Matt L.
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 8:50
  • Thank you. I thought I knew quite a bit about music theory, but it appears that I have only scratched the surface just enough to reveal a whole other world.
    – Rick
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 15:04

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.