The CMaj#11 chord (also known as C Major #11 and C#11), has a distinctive and unique tone. The chord continues the trend  of going up in major thirds, however this time, we’re playing a note that is not part of the Major scale. We must therefore, play the Lydian scale instead as the F would clash with the F#. This characteristics of this chord are bright and happy.

The notes in CMaj#11 are:


This chord includes additional chords inside it that you can utilise to layer over a chord progression, which is especially helpful when soloing.

  • From the Root: C△#11
  • From the 3rd: E-7
  • From the 5th: G△7
  • From the 7th: B-




A series of individual notes that form the chord are called an arpeggio. Each note is a chord tone.


The Lydian Scale

The Lydian Scale is perfect to use over CMaj#11

CMaj#11 Backing Track

Use The Lydian Scale to play along to CMaj#11. Use your creativity and try playing lines over the chord. To train your ear, make a sincere effort to internalise the sound.

My books are teeming with several variations on how to play intervals, scales, melodies, and more, so if you’re finding it difficult to come up with new ideas, check them out.

If You'd Like to Know More About Theory...Try My Books!

Other Chord Extensions

Chord NameNotes
Major Chords 
CMaj7C, E, G, B
CMaj9C, E, G, B, D
CMaj#11C, E, G, B, F#
CMaj13C, E, G, B, A
CMaj9(add13)C, E, G, B, D, A
Minor Chords 
Cmin7C, Eb, G, Bb
Cmin9C, Eb, G, Bb, D
Cmin11C, Eb, G, Bb, F
Cmin13C, Eb, G, Bb, A
Dominant Chords 
C7C, E, G, Bb
C9C, E, G, Bb, D
C11C, E, G, Bb, F
C13C, E, G, Bb, A
Half Diminished Chords 
C-7b5C, Eb, Gb, Bb

Read my ultimate guide on how to learn the bass guitar in the link below!

Howard Head

I turn confused bass enthusiasts into bass gods through a simple and logical process.