Three Chord Songs in D
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Three Chord Songs in D

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Three Chord Songs in D

This is a addendum to "3 Magic Chords, Part 3," which encourages you to learn switching back and forth among three chords: D, A7, and G.

This page will just be a list of popular 3-chord songs that can be played in D (which uses D, A7, and G). We make a point of not publishing copyrighted material in our pages, so we just have the titles.

Note: - Many of these songs can also be played in C, using C, G7 and F. That's not so easy on guitar, at first, but they work great on instruments like Autoharp (many of which make it hard to play in the key of D). Some that are too low to sing in C can be played in G using G, D7 and C (or C9).

Many of these songs were recorded in other keys, so you most likely won't be able to play along with the record. But they work in D for most singers.Chart for three-chord songs in the key of D.  Click or bigger picture.

If you have trouble working any of these out for yourself, you can always Google, say "La Bamba chords in D" and a dozen sites will come up. Most will be selling something and have aggravating popups, but that's not something I have any control over.

I may add more as I have time, but you'll probably recognize at least enough of these to practice without getting too bored. We've put a little chord chart up on the right for your reference.

  • La Bamba
  • First Cut is the Deepest
  • Great Balls of Fire
  • For What it's Worth ("Stop, Hey, What's that Sound?")
  • Wimoweh ("The Lion Sleeps Tonight")
  • Breakfast at Tiffany's
  • Surfin' USA
  • Wild Thing
  • Margaritaville
  • Lean on Me
  • The Joker (Steve Miller)
  • Breakfast at Tiffany's
  • Bad Moon Rising
  • Mellow Yellow
  • Twist and Shout
  • Cecilia
  • The Middle
  • Johnny B. Goode
  • Free Fallin'
  • Sloop John B
  • Home on the Range
  • You Are my Sunshine
  • Down By the Riverside
  • When the Saints Go Marching In
  • The Crawdad Song

The only limit to playing any three-chord song in the key of D is that the melody might be too high or too low for you to sing comfortably. That's one reason we will teach you what you need to play three chord songs in G next. G is a favorite key of Folk and Country musicians, and the favorite key of Bluegrass banjo players.

Other Resources

Related resources include:
  • Meet Your Guitar - A brief introduction to the parts of the guitar and how to hold it.
  • Three Magic Chords - A series of articles that get you started on basic chords you can use to play thousands of songs.
  • What is a 3-Chord Song? - Explains "3-chorders," and how understanding them will help you learn or follow along on thousands of songs without sheet music or lead sheets.


These suggestions are just a start, of course. But for all of its variations and even contradictions, Folk music is a discipline in itself, and a rewarding one of that. The more you play, sing, practice, and hang, the more you'll get out of it, the faster you'll learn in the future, and the better you'll be at whatever you already do have "under your belt."

Other resources will be listed as I get to them.

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