There are hundreds of chords available to guitar players, and learning as many of them as possible is important. D2 is a commonly used guitar chord, but this chord has many players who are confused, and there are not many good explanations about what this chord is or why it is called D2. What is the D2 chord, how do you play it, and why is called D2?
D2 is a shortened name for the D Suspended Second chord. The chord is sometimes written as Dsus2. The D2 chord is played with the notes D E A and is derived from the D Major chord. This chord can be played in many fretboard positions and sound fresh and interesting compared to regular major chords.
Learning to play the D2 chord on guitar is far easier than you may imagine. This chord is surprisingly uncomplicated, despite its unconventional name. Let’s take the time to learn how to play this chord well and discover the notes and musical functions that give this chord its name.
What Is A D2 Chord?
Most chords used on any instrument are classified by their function as major or minor and then may be extended with an interval number to describe any additional notes that are played in the chord.
This is why the D2 chord is so confusing for many guitar players. The term ‘D2’ does not indicate whether the chord is major or minor, and the second interval is very rarely used in chords in this way, as the second interval in most chords is indicated with a 9 rather than a 2.
This leaves many guitar players wondering what a D2 chord is and why it was given the same that it has.
The D2 chord is a shortened chord name that describes the chord D Suspended Second or Dsus2. Any suspended second chord is a chord that is built from the first, second, and fifth degrees from the major scale rather than the first, third, and fifth degrees, as regular major and minor chords are.
The ‘D’ in the name of the chord indicates that the root of the chord is D, and the other notes in the chord are constructed from the D Major scale.
If the formula for a suspended second chord is 1 2 5, then the notes that form the D2 chord are D E A. The 2 in the chord refers to the second degree from the scale, the D is found as the first degree, and the E is the fifth degree from the scale, which is found in most chords.
The name that the chord is given is a shortened version D Suspended Second, as D2 is far easier to say and much easier to write, which can save some time in rushed situations.
How To Play The D2 Chord On Guitar
The D2 is a great way to draw a unique sound from what is otherwise a very common and simple-sounding chord. Using D2 rather than a D Major can provide an interesting tone to a song and can make the piece feel more musical as well.
To fully utilize this chord, it is important to first learn the simplest way to play it, which is fortunately very easy on the guitar.
To play a D2 chord on the guitar, simply begin by playing a D Major open chord. Put your first finger on fret 2 of the G string, your second finger on fret 2 of the high E string, and place your third finger on the 3rd fret of the B string. Strum the chord and omit the Low E and A strings, and you have a D Major. This builds the chord with the notes D F# A, which make up the D Major chord.
To change the chord to a D2, simply remove your finger from the High E string, and play it as an open note instead. This replaces the F# from the chord, which is the 3rd, with an E which is the 2nd, making it a D2 chord.
To simplify the chord finger position, play the chord with your fist finger on fret 2 of the G string, your second finger on the third fret of the B string, and play the chord beginning from the open D string without playing the low two strings on the guitar.
This video is a good tutorial for learning to play the open version of this chord.
Does D2 Always Refer To Dsus2?
D2 is a very common way to refer to the D Suspended Second chord, but it can sometimes refer to another type of chord, as the way intervals are counted in music theory can lead to some chord naming confusion.
The second degree or the second interval of any scale is repeated in the next octave of the scale and is referred to as the ninth degree. This means that the second interval in a key and the ninth interval are the same note but separated by one octave.
Simply, the 2nd interval in a scale or a chord can also be depicted with a 9 rather than a 2, depending on which octave the note falls in.
This means that D2 can also refer to a Dadd9 chord, which is simply a D Major chord with a 9 added to it. However, using D2 is not commonly done to depict a Dadd9, as most guitar players will use the symbol D9 to refer to this chord, as the 9 more accurately represents the extra note that is used in the chord.
There is a significant difference between the D2 and the D9, even though they use mostly the same notes. It is important to understand the distinction between them and how to use the symbols correctly when writing out chords.
D2 is a commonly used chord name, but it is a relatively modern shortening of the full name of this chord, and it can be confusing. Nevertheless, this chord symbol will almost always denote a D Suspended Second chord, and no modern guitarists should feel confused when they see it.
Take the time to learn how to play this chord well, and it will become a useful part of your guitar repertoire. This is a fresh-sounding chord that can be played in many different contexts. Learn to use it well, and you will be a better guitar player for it.