Minor major seventh chord

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Minor major seventh chord on C. iM7 in C harmonic or ascending melodic minor.[1]
minor/major seventh chord
Component intervals from root
major seventh
perfect fifth
minor third
Forte no. / Complement
4-19 / 8-19

A minor major seventh chord, or minor/major seventh chord About this sound play  (written as mM7, mΔ7, −Δ7, mM7, m/M7, m(M7), minmaj7, m ,m7, m7+, etc.), is a naturally occurring diatonic nondominant seventh chord in the harmonic minor scale. The chord is built on a root, and above that the intervals of a minor third, a major third above that note and above that a major third (see infobox). It can also be viewed as taking a minor triad and adding a major seventh. The traditional numerical notation is based on the degrees of the major diatonic scale, and by this notation a minor major seventh chord is degrees 1, 3, 5, 7 of the major scale. For instance, the CmM7 chord consists of the notes C, E, G, and B. The chord can be represented by the integer notation {0, 3, 7, 11}.

The chord occurs on the tonic when harmonizing the harmonic minor scale in seventh chords. The harmonic minor scale contains a raised seventh, creating a minor second interval between the seventh and the octave of the tonic. This half step creates a pull (leading tone) to the tonic that is useful in harmonic context and is not present in the natural minor scale (also known as the Aeolian mode). Traditionally, in classical and jazz contexts, when building a chord on the dominant of the minor tonality, this raised seventh is present, and so both of these chords have a strong pull to the tonic. The raised seventh, in conjunction with the minor third, creates the dissonant sonority of an augmented triad within the chord.

III+ About this sound Play . Augmented triad in the minor major seventh chord.

The minor major seventh chord is most often used in jazz, typically functioning as a minor tonic. Jazz musicians usually improvise with the melodic minor scale over this chord; the harmonic minor scale is also used. Additionally, Bernard Herrmann's use of this chord – most notoriously in his score for Psycho – has earned it the nickname, "The Hitchcock Chord".[2] In flamenco, guitarists often use this chord as an abstract chord to create atmosphere and it gives a Moorish feel with the tension between the minor and major. This chord also appears in classical music, but it is used more in the late Romantic period than in the Classical and Baroque periods. One notable use is in the fourth movement of Samuel Barber's piano sonata; the subject of the fugue begins with a minor major seventh chord and the chord is heard many times throughout the fugue.[citation needed]

Minor major seventh chord on IV in C: F, A, C, E. About this sound Play 

The chord, infrequent in rock and popular music, is, "virtually always found on the fourth scale degree in the major mode", thus making the seventh of the chord the third of the scale and perhaps explaining the rarity of the chord, given the "propensity of the third scale degree to be lowered as a blues alteration."[3] Examples occur in Lesley Gore's "It's My Party" (see also augmented triad), the Chiffons' "One Fine Day", Mariah Carey's "Vision Of Love", Pink Floyd's Us and Them, Toni Braxton's "I Don't Want To", The Beatles' "Magical Mystery Tour",[3] and Depeche Mode's "Jezebel".

4-19 "may be regarded as the sonic emblem of music of the Second Viennese School because of its prevalence and multiple strategic functions."[4]

Minor major seventh chord table[edit]

Chord Root Minor third Perfect fifth Major seventh
CmM7 C E G B
CmM7 C E G B (C)
DmM7 D F (E) A C
DmM7 D F A C
DmM7 D F A Cdouble sharp (D)
EmM7 E G B D
EmM7 E G B D
FmM7 F A C E
FmM7 F A C E (F)
GmM7 G Bdouble flat (A) D F
GmM7 G B D F
GmM7 G B D Fdouble sharp (G)
AmM7 A C (B) E G
AmM7 A C E G
AmM7 A C E (F) Gdouble sharp (A)
BmM7 B D F A
BmM7 B D F A


  1. ^ Benward & Saker (2003). Music: In Theory and Practice, Vol. I, p.230. Seventh Edition. ISBN 978-0-07-294262-0.
  2. ^ Brown, Royal (1994). Overtones and Undertones: Reading Film Music, chapter 6. ISBN 0-520-08544-2. cited in Sullivan, Jack (2006). Hitchcock's Music, p. 285. ISBN 0-300-11050-2. Cooper, David (2005). Bernard Herrmann's The ghost and Mrs. Muir: a film score guide, p. 167. ISBN 0-8108-5679-4. and Donnelly, Kevin (2005). The Spectre of Sound: Music in Film and Television, p. 108. ISBN 1-84457-025-8.
  3. ^ a b Stephenson, Ken (2002). What to Listen for in Rock: A Stylistic Analysis, p. 87. ISBN 978-0-300-09239-4.
  4. ^ James Kenneth Wright, Alan M. Gillmor, eds. (2009). Schoenberg's Chamber Music, Schoenberg's World, p.62. Pendragon. ISBN 9781576471302.