How would you interpret a blues-like chord sequence where the I, IV and V chords are e.g.:

%5/1.5/1.7/3.5/1.6/2.5/1[I] %3/1.5/3.3/1.4/2.3/1.3/1[IV] %5/1.7/3.5/1.6/2.5/1.5/1[V] 

tablature realization of chord sequence

Is this simply a major I-IV-V in F, using F6 and some sort of altered Bb and C? Or is it a minor i7 with major IV and V? Or is the whole thing just minor i7-iv7-v7 in Dm? Or something else?

I realize that the exact naming may not be important, but I'm just wondering if there's a standard way to interpret this chord progression.

  • Sorry, I can't get the jTab to work.
    – n00b
    Apr 30, 2021 at 15:44
  • Best check on the 2nd line. I certainly couldn't play it at a gig!
    – Tim
    Apr 30, 2021 at 15:44
  • It's supposed to be 557565, 353433 and 575655, but the jTab isn't displaying properly for me. If someone can fix it ...
    – n00b
    Apr 30, 2021 at 16:01
  • 1
    @Aaron, it's a barre chord, all of them are. Apr 30, 2021 at 19:01
  • 1
    I've added an image of your jTab generated at jtab.tardate.com.
    – Aaron
    Apr 30, 2021 at 19:16

2 Answers 2


Chords as given in comment Dm7 G7 A7

In F major...

F: vim7 II7 III7


F: vim7 V7/V V7/vi

In D minor...

Dm: im7 IV7 V7

That's just mechnically analyzing them in different keys.

You need to provide a rationale for choosing a key.

For a possible key of F major there is no dominant in the progression, there is no C dominant.

For a possible key of D minor there is a dominant, the A7. Also, all of the roots of the progression are the three tonal degrees of D minor.

...Or is it a minor i7 with major IV and V?

I think it is. D minor makes much more sense to me than F major.


It's actually more like a Dorian Blues. The chords are Dm7, G7 and A7. Not completely a minor Blues, as that would need Gm7. However, A7 isn't diatonic to D Dorian!

So the chords would be i7, IV7 and V7. F has nothing to do here, even though Dm is the relative minor of it. While Dm7 is an inversion of F6, 6th chords rarely feature in Blues, also Blues generally has a I, IV V chord vocabulary, so if F was there, there's B♭ and C missing.

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