V7 chords are an essential part of music theory, and you’ll come across them often if you play an instrument or write songs. But what does V7 mean, exactly?

Understanding Chord Progressions

Before we dive into V7 chords, let’s first understand chord progressions. A chord progression is a series of chords played in a specific order that creates the harmony in a song. Chord progressions can be simple or complex, but they all serve the same purpose – to create a sense of movement and resolution.

The Roman Numeral System

In music theory, we use the Roman numeral system to represent chords in a key. The Roman numerals refer to the degree of the scale that each chord is built on. For example, in the key of C major, the I chord is C major, the IV chord is F major, and so on.

The V Chord

The V chord is crucial to many chord progressions because it creates tension that resolves back to the I (or “one”) chord. In the key of C major, for instance, the V chord would be G major.

The V7 Chord

The V7 chord is simply a dominant 7th chord built on the fifth degree of the scale. It consists of a root note (in our example above, G), a major third (B), a perfect fifth (D), and a minor seventh (F).

Important Note: The dominant 7th interval between the root note and minor seventh is what gives this chord its unique sound.

Using V7 Chords in Progressions

V7 chords are often used in place of regular V chords because they add extra tension and make for more interesting progressions. For example:


In summary, V7 chords are dominant 7th chords built on the fifth degree of the scale. They add tension and make for more interesting progressions in music theory. Remember to experiment with different chord progressions to see how V7 chords can enhance your music.