The Dm7 Chord – A Beginner’s Guide to the 7th Position

The Dm7 chord is an attractive accompaniment for songs across genres and in this lesson we will master both its open position and 10th position variations of this chord.

This song captures all the anxiety, confusion and eventually hopefulness shared by Morissette and her Gen X and millennial fans, while demonstrating the Dm7’s ability to create musical tension and progression.

1. Dm7 Open Position

Dm7 chord is a more sophisticated variant of D minor chord with added seventh interval for added character and sound. Commonly found in blues music, Dm7 adds both melancholy and curiosity to songs.

To play this chord, bar your index finger along the first fret of all six strings, baring across their first fret with all six fingers of your index hand. A slight angle or rotation may help prevent buzzes when strumming this chord; just avoid playing 5th and 6th strings – which have “Xs” above them as a reminder not to strike those notes while strumming this chord.

This version of the Dm7 chord is simple for your fingers and will give you an understanding of its sound in various positions on the guitar neck. Moving this shape up one fret results in the Fm7 chord.

2. Dm7 10th Position

Dm7 chords are frequently employed in genres like jazz, funk and soul to add dimension. Additionally, these chords lend themselves well to symphonic arrangements; Baby Love by the Supremes serves as an example.

It combines a Dm7 / F chord (also called Dsus9) with other symphonic chords to produce an unforgettable arrangement, which you may recognize from songs by Marvin Gaye, The Allman Brothers or REO Speedwagon.

To play this chord, bar your index finger across all six strings at the 10th fret and strum down from the E string until reaching its base note – this chord can be found in cheer pop confections, lowdown funk grooves and bluesy grooves; but also sounds great with simple acoustic rhythms and smooth vocal harmonies.

3. Dm7 7th Position

D minor 7th chords are constructed by using a minor triad (similar to major and dominant chords, except with a flat seventh), followed by adding an added minor seventh interval to create an effective D minor 7th chord. They can be used to produce many unique sounds; commonly found in blues music.

To play a Dm7 chord on guitar, use your index finger to lightly bar both marked strings at the first fret with an index finger – this will help produce a clean sound without buzzes on 5th or 6th strings.

Correctly played, this chord conveys feelings of melancholy and worry to the song, adding tension to blues progressions or creating the feeling of tragedy and despair as found in Marvin Gaye’s Inner City Blues.

4. Dm7 9th Position

This chord features a flat seventh, adding tension and making it the most dominant seventh chord available. This chord shape can often be found in jazz music as part of a progression that includes II, VI and I chords.

To play this chord, place your index finger across all four strings and the fifth fret of B string (second thinnest string). With ring finger pressing down third fret of G string to play D.

Minor seventh chords evoke feelings of melancholy and unease, providing listeners with an anticipation and contemplation sense that makes it an excellent addition to blues progressions or rock songs – as seen by Bruno Mars’ “Just the Way You Are.” Their serious tone induces contemplation for listeners while their serious sound creates musical tension to match lyrics about personal development.

5. Dm7 12th Position

This chord is known as minor vi, a diatonic chord which adds subtle depth and color to primary chords. You’ll often hear this chord used as part of an accompaniment of songs from any key; examples can be found in The Beatles’ 1966 Along Comes Mary verse, Crosby Stills and Nash’s 1968 Long Time Gone verse, REO Speedwagon’s 1974 Ridin the Storm Out verse and Steely Dan’s 1977 Pretzel Logic verse – just to name a few!

To play this chord, position your index finger across all six strings at the 10th fret and place your ring finger on the 12th fret of A string, baring across their 10th frets at once with your index finger barred across them all and your ring finger on A string 12th fret, Strum all four strings down from D string, enjoying its delightful quizzical sound and practicing this chord in various fretboard positions to increase finger independence and muscle memory.