Guitar Chords – D Minor

guitar chords dm

The D minor chord is a melancholic-sounding guitar chord, often creating a mournful or melancholy atmosphere when played as either an open or barre chord.

Barre chords require fingers on specific frets for playback while an open chord uses only open strings in its construction.

Root Note

Root notes define the key of guitar chords, and are therefore integral components. Without the root note, scales, arpeggios and chords would lack meaning altogether.

Bar chords (D minor included) typically require you to double one note one octave higher or lower than its normal voicing; this adds depth and strength to the chord, making it easier to switch between notes in it.

Examples 3a-3f of D minor chord voicings that leave their low E string open include those in fifth position; sometimes this works well, and at other times it could clash with other aspects of the chord and require mutes instead of playing open strings in order to maintain harmony within it. In such instances, it would be wiser to mute rather than play them directly so they do not clash with other aspects.

3rd Note

The third note of any chord determines its major or minor quality. Chords with a major third between its first and second notes tend to have major qualities while those with minor thirds between its first and second notes tend to have minor qualities. Therefore, D minor guitar chord consists of D (1), F (3), and A(5) tones, making it easy for you to remember this chord shape similar to D major chord you already know about.

This basic chord shape can be moved up the fretboard like any other guitar chord. A move of one fret results in D minor becoming D# minor; two frets forward leads to E minor; etc. As such, shifting it merely one fret can transform from folk music to rock with ease.

5th Note

The 5th note of a guitar chord dm is F, making the chord sound stronger than one made up of only three notes. Most D minor chord shapes feature at least one doubled up note from different octaves to create more dynamic sounds than traditional three-note D minor chord shapes.

A D minor chord sounds more melancholic than major chords and can be an ideal choice when creating songs that convey feelings of uncertainty, vulnerability, or anxiety – such as The Weeknd’s hit “In the Night.” Additionally, its use adds folk-influenced elements to music; an example being Kaleo and their cover of R.E.M’s confessional song “Losing My Religion”.

Many beginner guitarists find the D minor chord challenging as it requires fingers to be placed simultaneously on three separate frets. But with practice you will soon master it – this chord often pops up during songwriting!

Bass Note

D minor is one of the most frequently-used bass notes and creates an intense, moody tone. Additionally, this chord can help produce thick and gritty tones when applied to bass guitar playing.

D minor chords feature an A on the 4th string as their bass note; unlike its E counterpart which includes an alternating bass note which moves an octave higher than an open 6th string/low E note, the D minor chord does not contain any moving bass notes.

The D minor chord can be played as either a barre chord in fifth position (Example 3a), or with an open D string added for extra ease when learning the instrument. Beginners might find the latter version easier; just be wary not to accidentally mutes an open string with their 2nd finger while playing this version! This can often happen accidentally!

guitar chords dm

D minor chords produce a deeper, darker sound than major chords and are among the first things most beginner guitarists learn to play. But doing so requires barricading multiple strings across different frets – something many beginner guitarists struggle with initially.

For this method, a typical approach uses an open Am shape with your index finger placed at the 5th fret and strumming over just the low E string (muting it when strumming).

Barre Chord

D minor as a barre chord is one of the more popular chords to learn for beginners, as its melancholy quality adds depth and emotion to songs. Artists such as Metallica, Jimi Hendrix and the Beach Boys use this chord successfully.

To play a D minor barre chord, start by moving your index finger across strings five through one (to muted them) before barrering B, G and D strings (2, 3 and 4) two frets lower – this chord shape connects directly with its Cm chord counterpart by their root note patterns.

Beginners may find it challenging to master this type of barre chord at first due to its require a death grip on the neck; however, with proper technique, practice, and voicings you’ll soon improve your ability to fret these types of barre chords! Jumbo or medium jumbo fret sizes make fretting these kinds of barre chords simpler as pressing harder won’t be required when fingering these types of chords.

Open Chord

This chord is known as an open chord because its strings are unfretted. It is one of the easiest chords for beginners to learn, since it does not require significant finger strength or dexterity to play it correctly.

As you learn this chord, take special note of where your fingers are placed on the strings. Make sure that they do not press down onto other strings which could muffle their sound or stop them ringing out properly. Also avoid hitting any top string with third finger as this could create tension in neck and shoulder areas.

Once you feel confident with these chords, try playing along to some songs. Most progressions involve eight beats so practice slowly at first until you become comfortable quickly switching chords. A capo may help make chords easier to play.

Suspended Fourth Chord

The D suspended fourth chord (also known as an Asus4) is a versatile chord used in many genres of music. Unlike triads, its third is replaced with a fourth instead, creating dissonance between root and fourth scale degrees that can be more pleasant than consonant intervals such as an octave or perfect fifth.

To play a D suspended fourth chord, take your open Dm shape and add the pinky finger under your index finger on the first string – this will make switching between Dm and a Dsus4 chord much simpler! Additionally, this chord shape can easily be moved around on your fretboard; just about anywhere that a Dm chord would exist is where this chord works perfectly.

Suspension chords can be used to delay resolution of issues in a chord progression without having to introduce an unfamiliar voicing. Neil Young’s song ‘Journey Through the Past’ uses suspension chords such as Dsus4s to build tension for its following D major chord.


D Minor chord is one of the first basic guitar chords most guitarists learn, as its simple progression makes it accessible and is used extensively across popular songs.

Bar chords get their name from having all strings pressed down simultaneously, unlike open chords which leave one string unplayed (played open). Because this type of chord requires all its strings to be held down at once, mastering barre chords takes practice on both hands to get comfortable with playing them – particularly on the left hand.

One way of working on this is with an “on-off” drill in which you hold your index finger in D minor shape for four beats before taking it off and placing it back again – this will build muscle memory in your hand for fast chord changes. Or you could try an alternate D minor barre voicing that uses open Am shapes on the 10th fret instead.