Playing over II-V-I change


today I’m going to talk about how to play over a II-V-I Change! This is a very common change in Jazz but even in other genres so it’s a very important topic to work on!

First of all, what does II-V-I mean? 
These changes are taken from the harmonization of Major Scale. As you know, if we were in C, we would have this progression: C maj7 – Dmin7 – E min7 – F maj7 – G7 – A min7 – B min7b5.

So the II would be D min – the V would be G7 & the I would be C maj7.

In the last lessons, I talked about how to play over Maj7 chord using Pentatonic Scale but also how to use minor pentatonic to play over Min7 chords! 

Cool! That’s a great start to think about the II-V-I in a new and different way.
Just to recap:

Over a Maj7 chord

  1. Min Pentatonic up a major 3rd
  2. Min Pentatonic down a half step
  3. Min Pentatonic up a major 6th

Over a Min7 chord

  1. Min Pentatonic on the Root
  2. Min Pentatonic up a whole step
  3. Min Pentatonic on the V


Now, let’s add a cool thing! What should we play over a Dom7 chord, especially if this would be a Dom7 altered?

Let’s use a Min Pentatonic up a min 3rd!! Why? We would have pretty much the same notes on the Superlocrian scale, but with the Min Pentatonic fingering! Isn’t that cool?

Let’s see – if we have G7alt we could play Bb Min Pentatonic then!

If we played Bb Min Pentatonic over G we would have these extensions:
Bb (#9) Db (b5) Eb (#5) F (7th) Ab (b9)

Isn’t that Suuuuper cooooool?? It is!! I use this tool all the time!!

Try these new tools and let me know how they work for you! I think it’s pretty cool!!


If you enjoyed this lesson and want to deepen the study of the tools you can use on the Modern Blues, come and have a look at my courses on the GUITARlab – Modern Blues Guitar School!
Click on the covers to find out more!




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