Overview

There are many positions (ways, variants etc.) to play the D major chord on the mandolin.

In this article you can find the most common chord positions – displayed on the slideshow above, fingered for your convenience. To help you understand how to play them, I have included step-by-step instructions, describing where to place each finger and what note this will produce. Finally, the article includes a chord chart with all possible chord positions for future reference, feel free to print it.

What is a D major Chord?

The D consists of:

  • The root, which for the D chord is of course D
  • The third, which for the D chord is F#
  • The fifth, which for the D chord is A
See it below displayed on sheet paper:

D major triad on sheet paper

 

Two finger, D major fingered for mandolin

D major /A

This is how you place your left hand on the fretboard:

  • First finger on 2nd fret of fourth string.
  • Second finger on 2nd fret of first string.
  • Leave Second and Third strings unfretted.

Note that because the first bass note is the fifth (A) and not the root (D) , we call this chord second inversion and we write it D/A, meaning that this is a D chord with the first note being A.

 

Barre D major, fingered for mandolin

D major /A with barre

This is how you place your left hand on the fretboard:

  • First finger on 2nd fret of all strings. 
  • Third finger on 4th fret of third string. 
  • Fourth finger on 5th fret of second string.

Note that because the first bass note is the fifth (A) and not the root (D) , we also call this chord second inversion and we write it D/A, meaning that this is a D chord with the first note being A.

 

Four finger D major,  fingered for mandolin

D major for mandolin, fingered

This is how you place your left hand on the fretboard:

  • Fourth finger on 7th fret of fourth string. 
  • First finger on 4th fret of third string. 
  • Second finger on 5th fret of second string. 
  • Third finger on 5th fret of first string. 

Note that because the first bass note is D i.e the root of the D chord , we call this chord just D, meaning that this is a D with the first note being D.

D major Mandolin Chord Variants

As with all chords, there are many variants of the D chord for the mandolin. I have included nice-looking photorealistic descriptions of the most common ones. Nevertheless, if you want to explore more, see below a Chord Sheet that presents all variants for you to practice.

D Major Mandolin Chord Sheet

How to Practice chords on the mandolin

There are many good articles here at theMandolinTuner for practicing chords. I suggest you start with:

Call to action

Ok, it is now time to practice. Grab your mandolin and try to play the F#/Gb minor chord variants slowly at the beginning and then fast!

 

Resources

 

 

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