This is one of the prettiest chords to play on the ukulele! Learning how to play the Dm7 chord on the ukulele will let you add a little bit of emotional nuance to your songs. It also gives you a good finger workout and helps you stretch your playing – both physically and musically! So let’s learn a little bit about basic chord construction, how to read a chord chart, and how to play the Dm7 chord on the ukulele.
To play this chord on your ukulele, you’ll need to press down on all four strings, so it’s a great introduction to more complex chords!
How Do You Make a Dm7 Chord?
Before you do anything else, make sure that your ukulele is tuned to G – C – E – A. It doesn’t matter if you’re using a low G or a high G string when you play the Dm7 chord, but you do need to have your ukulele tuned to G – C – E – A to play this chord properly.
We also should look at what makes a 7 chord in music. A chord is any three or more notes played together. A basic major chord has three notes that are a whole step apart from each other. If we were playing a D major chord, those notes would be D, F#, and A. To make that D major chord a minor chord, we’re going to slide that F# down half a step to be an F natural, and keep the D and A notes. That makes our D minor chord D – F – A.
Now we want to add an extra layer of nuance to this chord by making it a 7 chord. We’re going to add an extra note to this basic chord, which is seven steps above the tonic note (D), and one whole step down from that same note (D).
It might sound confusing, but that’s okay right now. You don’t have to understand everything in music theory to play a great sounding chord on the ukulele!
A Fun Chord Using 3 Frets and 4 Strings
Now to actually play the Dm7 chord on the ukulele, we’re going to start by playing a regular Dm chord: this means pressing down on the second fret of the fourth and third strings, and the first fret of the second string.
Then to make this a 7 chord, use your pinky finger to press down on the third fret of the first string while playing your Dm chord, and there you have it!
Tips For Practicing the Dm7 Chord On the Ukulele
Practice this chord a few times by pressing down on all the correct frets and strings, and then play each string one at a time to make sure you’re getting a nice, clear sound with no buzzing or muted strings. Once you can do that easily, you’re ready to start strumming away using this beautiful chord!
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Another way to practice this chord on the ukulele is to play your regular Dm chord, and then use your pinky to press down on the third fret of that first string to add the 7 – and then lift it up and play the regular Dm chord again. Practicing this way will give you a nice little finger workout for your pinky while letting you hear the difference between the Dm and Dm7 chord on the ukulele.
An Alternative Way to Play the Dm7 Chord
If bar chords are your jam (and they really are for some people), you can also play the Dm7 chord on the ukulele by simply barring all the strings at the fifth fret of your ukulele. Playing the Dm7 as a bar chord can give you a whole new way to move up and down the neck of your ukulele.
These two ways of playing the Dm7 chord on the ukulele involve pressing down on all four strings, so this gives you more control over how the chord sounds. While sometimes this might feel like a challenge, with a little practice, you can add this lovely chord to your collection of ukulele chords!
Let yourself play with this fun chord and try substituting it in some of your favorite songs that use the Dm chord to see how it sounds!
As always, if you want to get more great tips and information about ukulele chord progressions and substitutions, make sure you check out all the wonderful classes and membership options from Uke Like The Pros!