Jazz progressions over music backing tracks

Logo and guitar in the backgroundThis is the first lesson in a series covering chord progressions in jazz including jam tracks (the guitar parts are removed so you can practice on comping).

To see instructions for the changes in the chord progressions click at the "Start music / chord changes"-button and you will start the backing track plus the real-time chord changes which can be seen in the empty field.

Jazz chord progressions – lesson 1

The ii - V - I progression structure is among the most fundamental in jazz. This sequence can be played in many ways and, of course, in all keys. The one presented here is in the C Major (or D Dorian). Scroll down for chord diagrams.

Dm7 | G7 | Cmaj7 | Cmaj7

1st bar | 2nd bar | 3rd bar | 4th bar

Start the practice by clicking the button below (this will start the backing track and show chord changes).

Repeats: 5 times
BPM: 120
Time signature: 4/4

Click the buttons to play or pause the audio.

Volume - +

Chord diagrams

These three-string voicings (a.k.a. shell voicings) are some of the most standard chord choices in the jazz style. They are effective to use in strumming arrangements with fast changes, and especially in the well-recognized comping style á la Freddie Green with typically four downstrokes for each bar.


  • Dm7 chord voicing X353XX


  • G7 chord diagram 3X34XX


  • Cmaj7 chord diagram X324XX

Alternative chords diagrams

These alternative fingerings higher up the fretboard is also very common and you should try to learn these as well. Notice that for these chords as well for the chords above, the ring finger acts as a guide finger on the third string during the whole progression (it should not be removed from this string).


  • Dm7 chord voicing10 X 10 10 X X


  • G7 chord diagram X 10 11 10 X X


  • Cmaj7 chord diagram 8X99XX

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