I'm struggling to work out how to name the second chord in the following progression from a song I am transcribing:

sheet music

It's a sort of Dsus4 inversion with a b6 in the bass. My best guess is that it should be called a Dsus4/Bb or something like that, but I'm not really sure where to begin (Bbmaj13 perhaps?). It's a bit of an odd one, but the voice leading from b6>6 and 4>3 to Bm is nice.

Do you have any idea what it should be called? More generally do you have any tips for naming tricky chords like this one?

2 Answers 2


Dsus/Bb will get the right notes played. I don't think there's any point in trying to go further. At least in this case there IS a simple, unambiguous chord name available. Quite often there isn't.

When chords get TOO tricky, give up on chord symbols. Fortunately we have notation...

  • As there are two distinct sus chords - 2 and 4, it only makes sense when the appropriate number is included. Just sus doesn't hack it. It is ambiguous!
    – Tim
    May 14, 2018 at 13:21
  • Not really. In the absence of further information 'sus' means 'sus4'. Look at ... well, any music that uses chord symbols.
    – Laurence
    May 14, 2018 at 21:23

Sounds more like Gm add9/Bb to me! G minor in 1st inversion, with an added A.


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