D Music Note: The Complete Guide to the Note and Key

By Jade Bultitude
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As one of the twelve notes in Western music, the D music note sits between C#/Db and D#/Eb. Learn how to recognise D in different clefs, the different scales and modes that start on D and listen to famous songs that feature D prominently in their melodies.

D Note on The Staff

D note treble clef

Here is probably the most common D you’ll see. It sits on the space below the bottom line of the treble clef and is the D above middle C.

Below are different Ds that you will see on the treble and bass clef. Remember that we can play D notes an octave higher or lower from the D above middle C. This means that technically there are infinite D notes to choose from!

d notes in treble and bass clef

Below are notes that are enharmonically equivalent to D. C double sharp means two half-steps above C, which is a D natural. E double flat means two half steps below E, which is also D natural.

d music note enharmonic equivalent notes

D Note on the Piano and Keyboard

D sits between the C# and D# black keys on the keyboard. The black keys move in groups of two then three. The D note is in-between the first and second black keys in the groups of 2.

You might also remember it as the white key above C.

D notes on piano

D Note Accidentals

We can add accidental signs to a D note and these are shown below. Remember that all these notes (with the exception of D natural) are not enharmonically equivalent to D.

d music note accidentals

D Music Notes in Different Clefs

Here are typical D notes that you will see in different clefs. Some are lower or higher and for more on how to name the different D notes, check out our post on octaves.

Treble Clef – D

D note treble clef

The D above middle C (D4) sits on the space below the first line of the treble clef.

Bass Clef – D

d music note bass clef

The D below middle C (D3) sits on the third line of the bass clef.

Alto Clef – D

d music note alto clef

The D above middle C (D4) sits on the third space of the alto clef.

Tenor Clef – D

d music note tenor clef

The D above middle C (D4) sits on the fourth space of the tenor clef.

Mezzo- soprano – D

d music note mezzo soprano clef

The D above middle C (D4) sits on the second space of the mezzo-soprano clef.

Soprano Clef – D

d music note soprano clef

The D above middle C (D4) sits on the first space of the soprano clef.

Baritone Clef – D

d music note baritone clef

The D below middle C (D3) sits on the second line of the baritone clef.

Popular Scales starting on D

D Major

The major scale formula is W-W-H-W-W-W-H, where W= whole step and H = half step. Below is the D major scale.

d major scale

D Natural Minor

The natural minor formula is W-H-W-W-H-W-W. Below is the D natural minor scale.

d minor scale treble clef

D Harmonic Minor

The harmonic minor formula is W – H – W – W – H – W1/2 – H. Note that this scale has a three semitone step or a whole-step-and-a-half.

d harmonic minor scale, note labels

G Melodic Minor

When ascending the melodic minor scale follows this pattern: W-H-W-W-W-W-H.

d melodic minor ascending

When descending it follows the natural minor pattern.

d melodic minor descending

Modes Starting on D

Below are the modes that start on D.

D modes

Frequency of D Music Note

Using the equal temperament tuning system, the A above middle C is 440 Hz. This means that the D above middle C would be approximately 294 Hz.

frequencies for equal temperament scale, D music note highlighted

Solfege D Note

solfege scale with re highlighted

In the solfege system, the syllables Do, Re Mi, Fa, Sol, La, Si are used to refer to the notes names, C, D, E , F, G, A, B.

The D music note in solfege is referred to as ‘Re’,

What’s Next…?

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Jade is an experienced musician and teacher as well as being the founder of Music Theory Foundations. She has been helping people learn music theory for more than 10 years from pre school children all the way to degree level studies.

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