One glance at the chord diagram and fingering for the F7 chord and you may find yourself saying, “Oh, my!! What have I gotten myself into?!” This chord is commonly used in jazz and other genres. I know it looks like a big, scary chord, but with practice, you will become more familiar with it. And you don’t even have to become a uke-octopus! You can take the confidence you gain from learning this chord and tackle even more chords that may seem big and scary. You can do this!
So… let’s begin!
The Notes inside the F7 Chord
The F7 contains the notes F-A-C-Eb. (The “b” after the “E” means that it’s an E flat.) The F7 sounds very rich and full because it uses those four notes. You may see this written in notation as 2313. The Eb is the 7th chord which is added onto the three notes that you would normally see in a regular chord with three notes. You may find this Eb is sometimes called a D sharp (or D#).
The notes are exactly the same, it’s just a different way of saying it. If you play piano or have access to a keyboard, you can see this easily on the black key of Eb/D#. Here, we will call it the Eb though. Besides, F-A-C-Eb is easy to remember. You can think of a face or even a flat face since the E is flat.
Ready, Set, Play!
You will place your index finger on the first fret on the E string for the F note. Next, you will add your middle finger on the second fret of the G string for the A note. Woah, you’re halfway there! You may want to pause for a moment and just practice putting those two fingers on those strings first. Get comfortable with it and you will feel more at ease adding the additional strings.
Read more: Learn how to play “Creep” on your Ukulele
Next, place your ring finger on the third fret of the C string for the Eb note. Lastly, your pinky finger will go on the third fret of the A string for the C note. How does that feel? It’s not so bad, is it?
Practice the Chord
There are a few different ways you can practice this chord to optimize your success with it. You can practice by adding your fingers to the first two notes and strings repeatedly as mentioned above. Then add the next two. Try all four a few times. What other chords might sound good with it? The Bb (or B flat) scale is one of many scales that you can use to improvise with the F7 chord.
This scale consists of the notes Bb, C, D, Eb, F, G, A, and Bb. Practice some of those chords with the F7 and improvise, making up your own little melodies. You can even just try it with one other chord if you want and observe how that sounds. This will give you great practice for moving to and from the chord. And it’s great fun to make up your own, little tunes, even if it is just to get familiar with the F7 chord.
If you want to learn more chords and and use them in cool rhythms, go to the #1 Ukulele learning site and find all you need to learn to become an Ukulele master!
Now, let’s review what we learned with a cool list of questions and answers:
What are the notes in the F7 chord?
The notes in the F7 chord are F-A-C-Eb.
What fingers should I use?
To play the F7 chord, use your index, middle, ring, and pinky fingers.
How can I practice the F7 chord?
Start with just the first two fingers to play the E string and F note and the middle finger for the G string and the A note. Once comfortable with that, add the next two fingers. You can also practice with other chords in the Bb scale.
Is there an easier way to play this chord?
You can simplify this chord by leaving out the fourth note and finger which is the C note on the A string. It will still sound good, just not quite as rich or full.
You should be proud of yourself for tackling this big chord. The more you practice, the more it will become familiar to you. For more information on how 7th chords work, check out this video by Terry The 5 Types of Seventh Chords for Ukulele. You can also check out the memberships at www.ukelikethepros.com for courses, techniques, song tutorials, and more. This site also has a friendly community of fellow ukulele players you can connect with! Enjoy your playing!