Dindi is a bossa nova song by Brazilian composer Antonio Carlos JobimIn contrast to many of his pieces, the song has a very short and clear form and is therefore very suitable for a simple solo guitar arrangement.  

Dindi was probably composed by Jobim in the key of C-Major. The first part has a very straight-forward chord progression, while the B section is characterized by somewhat more unusual minor chord shifts. For this arrangement, the song is transposed to the key of D-Major.

The so-called verse, a freely designed part before the main theme of the piece, is omitted in this arrangement and we begin with the melody “Oh, Dindi…”: 

More Beautiful Tom Jobim Songs

Chord Arrangements by Joao Gilberto

Original Solo Guitar Arrangements

DINDI The chord progresssion

The chords of the first part are mostly well-known harmonies from the key of D major. Nevertheless, even in this short section, Jobim manages to take small steps out of the key. 

The C-Major7 chord in the second measure is a so-called borrowed chordIt is from a different key with the root D: D minor DorianThe Gm(maj7) in bar 6 is the subdominant-minor chord (“borrowed” from the key of D-Minor). The subdominant functions (G major and G minor) are prepared by the II-V cadence Am7 – D7. 

Borrowed Chords

Borrowing Chords from another key or mode (hence the formal name Modal Interchange) is an intermediate to advanced concept in modern compositional technique. In principle it is rather simple – a chord from the “home key” of the composition is exchanged for the chord on the same scale degree of another key.

The most famous example of a borrowed chord is probably the subdominant-minor chord. 

Here are the chords of D-Major and D-Minor. Each of these chords could be interchanged to create more interesting chord progressions.

The Chords of D-Major:

The Chords of D-Minor:

The second part of Dindi is prepared by a II-V cadence in F# minor (G#m7b5 – C#7). This is followed by two sections of four bars with identical harmony and melody progression:

In the first four bars, the F# minor chord alternates with the D minor chord. The theoretical background is again modal interchange, i.e. the “changing in” of a chord from another modality. 

The following bars reflect the harmony of the first four bars, this time shifted down a whole tone. At the end, a II-V cadence (Em7 – A7) leads back to D major.  

Listen to the solo guitar arrangement here:

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