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D7 Chord Guitar

How To Play A D7 Chord On Guitar

7th chords are an easy way to add more flavor and color to your chord progressions. Of all of the open position 7th chords, I probably use D7 the most. I'm going to show you a couple useful ways to play the D7 chord today. First I'll show you the most common version, then I'll show you another version I use. For both of them I'll show you a good way to practice them. 

The D7 Chord On Guitar

Let's start out with the basic D7 chord. It's much like the D Major chord you probably already know. In fact, there's only a one note difference.

Start by putting your index finger on the 1st fret of the 2nd string. Then put your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 3rd string, and your ring finger on the 2nd fret of the 1st string. 

The 4th string is played open and is the root note. You can play the open 5th string, but I'd recommend just using the first 4 strings. Form the chord a couple times then release your fingers. Form it again and release. Do this a few times to help build some muscle memory. After just forming the chord a few times, form it and add a strum. If you have any buzzing or muted notes, adjust your fingers slightly. Do this a few times.

Before we go onto an exercise I'll show you the second version of this chord. The best way to think about it is a C7 chord moved up two frets. 

Start by placing your index finger on the 2nd string 3rd fret. Then place your middle finger on the 4th string 4th fret. Place your ring finger on the 5th string 5th fret. This is your C shape, just up two frets. The last thing to do is place your pinky on the 3rd string 5th fret. The 1st string will be open.  

Do the same muscle memory exercise as the other D7 chord. Once you have this one sounding pretty good you're ready to move onto the exercises.

Practicing the D7 Chord

To practice either chord, get a slow but steady tempo. Count it out, 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4. Now, strum the chord and hold for two beats. Strum the chord again and hold it for two beats. This is part 1 of the exercise.

For part two you'll strum and hold it for two beats, then release your hand for two beats. Quickly form the chord again and strum. Count two beats and release. 

This will train your hand to form the chord really quickly. Just make sure you start slow at first. 

Try to hit just the first 4 strings on the first D7 chord, and just the first 5 of the second D7 chord. If you accidentally hit another strings it's OK. Don't spend too much energy on that for now, but be aware of it. 


That's it for this lesson! I hope you enjoyed it and every lesson in this 30 day guitar coaching challenge. And I hope you find one or both of these versions of the D7 chord useful. If you haven't played either version definitely get the 1st one down before moving onto the 2nd. 

Which version do you like the best? Have you played either version before? Maybe a third version that I didn't include? Leave a comment and let me know!

>> Check Out Day #12 : Fingerpicking Exercises On Guitar Part

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