Blue in Green: Chords and Chord Melody for Jazz Guitar

(by Miles Davis) from the album Kind of Blue

Written in 1959 by Miles Davis for the classic album Kind of Blue Blue in Green is an incredible ballad. It should be part of every jazz guitarist’s trick bag. The harmony is soulful and daunting, and the melody is timeless. Blue and Green is now considered a jazz standard, so to speak.

The piece is usually performed very (very) slow as ballad; watch out for the tricky 10-bar form! The chords changes are not typical. It messes up everyone not paying attention. Around bar number 8, you’ll feel like it’s coming back to the top of the form… but it’s not! So, always be careful and vigilant. I recommend you play 

To complicate things a bit further, the form is often altered for soloing: it goes in “real” double time. Every chord lasts half the time of it’s actual written value (see the chart for reference). The form is thus 5 bars long! I personally like to to solo on this 5-bar form when I play this tune.

Listen to the original album, it should clear things up. Be extra careful and practice it for a while before calling this tune at jam session. Get a hold of the chord changes first!

The jazz guitar chord melody arrangement presented here for Blue in Green is again very minimal: you should take the time to find how you like to play that song and which voicings fit best with the way you phrase the melody.

Also, try the melody an octave down.

Have fun!

Video Demonstration

Here’s the video of the Blue in Green jazz guitar chord melody demonstrated, with some improvisation. I also took the liberty of adding some jazz guitar chords while improvising on this Miles Davis classic!

See  the pdf (with TABS) for the complete arrangement.  The chord melody PDF contains:

  • the leadsheet (Blue in Green chords, with symbol + melody on top),
  •  the chord melody arrangement (played in the video here),
  • a basic chord chart (basic guitar shapes for you to use.)

Suggested Listening

Kind of Blue (1959): Classic album that launched the “modal” era of jazz. It should be the first album added to any jazz record collection! No kidding. 🙂

Miles Davis - Kind of Blue

Bill Evans Live: I heard him on various album. Incredible, as always.

3 thoughts on “Blue in Green: Chords and Chord Melody for Jazz Guitar

  1. Something about the PDF, Bar 10: chord is supposed to be Dm9, but chorddiagramm on Am9 is different and if the highest Note in Dm9 is F, there is no 9 in the chord at all, isn‘t it?
    Little confused, maybe overthinking 😛
    Best regards,


    • Hi Ron, unfortunately the chord diagram for Dm9 is a typo – the melody note is supposed to be an F, so the Dm9 chord diagram doesn’t really jive with the melody note. You can fix this by simply turning the E on the 12th fret into the F on the 13th fret as in the TAB or playing a Dm7 like X X 12 14 13 13. Sorry about that!

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