The Secrets of Learning the Fretboard

Jazz Progressions

Jazz Progressions

Jazz Progressions are simply common chord progressions in jazz music. One of the most common progressions is the ii-V-I progression. The ii-V-I sounds at its best when you use seventh chords and their expanded voicings. As you already know from past lessons, the ii chord is a minor chord, the V chord is a dominant chord, and the I chord is a major chord. So the most basic Jazz progression is the ii minor 7 – V dominant 7 – I major 7. In the key of C, this progression is Dm7-G7-Cmaj7.

Below, you will find a few examples to experiment with in addition to a set of chord diagrams showing various ii-V-I progressions.

ii V I - Jazz Chord Progressions
ii V I - Jazz Progressions Chord Patterns
ii V I - Jazz Progressions Chord Patterns

About Patrick MacFarlane 127 Articles
I've been teaching guitar online for 25 years. My site has been featured in Rolling Stone and Acoustic Guitar magazine. I'm the author of The Secrets of Learning the Fretboard and Guitar Lesson World The Book.

4 Comments on Jazz Progressions

  1. Having played folk, blues, classic rock, country, and praise and worship over several decades, I am excited and welcome the opportunity to learn jazz. Thanks for opening up a new and exciting genre to me.

  2. Hi Patrick,

    I am really happy I found your website.

    I went straight to your Jazz Progressions section as I love jazz music, but I have always been intimidated by what appeared to be complicated chord structures. This is my own fault because I have made the common mistake of continually playing the more simple first position major and minor guitar chords. The other reason for my limited progress is my struggle to master barre chords.

    However, I have made up my mind to start afresh and re-learn how to play guitar – and properly.

    As you will know, guitar lessons can be quite expensive, especially for those of us who earn a modest income. Therefore and help you might offer me through your wensite will be received with sincere gratitude and I will not hesitate to recommend you to others.

    Kind regards,

    Mike Wilkins

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