I've been working on a Jazz chord melody arrangement for guitar in D major and in the arrangement the final chord in the piece is a G7#11.

It's my understanding the G7#11 would function as something like a Dmin/major7-11/13 since:

Dmaj7: D, F#, A, C# G7b5: G (11 of D), B (13 of D), Db(C#-major 7 of D), F(minor third of D).

Here are the final measures of the piece:

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Is my understanding of this correct?

  • 1
    Why does it have to be some sort of D chord? It does seem a strange final chord for a piece in D. But music is all about sometimes doing interesting 'way out' things! There's also the possibility that you've misconstrued the key or the chord. Can you post a scan of the page you're working from? I don't think there's much point in continuing this thread until we've seen it in context.
    – Laurence
    Jul 13, 2017 at 13:35
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    Thanks! Seeing the sheet music, I'd recommend replacing references to ♭5 with ♯11. Enharmonically, they're the same, but the ♭5 can imply other alterations that the ♯11 usually doesn't imply.
    – jdjazz
    Jul 24, 2017 at 13:41

1 Answer 1


You've got the function exactly right. This is extremely similar to ending a song on a Dm∆7 chord or Imin∆7 chord. It is effectively the same chord voicing, but the IV (a G) in the bass. It's relevant that the G13♯11 chord is written as a ♯11 chord rather than a ♭5 chord. The ♯11 doesn't imply any other alterations and is usually the only alteration, while a ♭5 is often (but not always) accompanied by other alterations like a ♭13, ♭9, and/or ♯9.

There are many tracks that are good examples of this ending. Though, it is more common to hear this ending on a song in Dmin than Dmaj, which isn't too surprising given that G13♯11 is diatonic to Dmin, not Dmaj.

The first example that comes to mind is Jim Hall and Ron Carter's version of Alone Together (which is in Dmin and ends with a G♯11 chord):

(The last A section starts at 9:54, and the final chord is heard at 10:26.)

It might be harder to hear because of the other modulations that occur first, but they do finally end on a G♯11 chord.


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