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A Miles Davis composition, from Kind Of Blue. Although the whole album is innovative, in that it is one of the first modal albums, Blue In Green is modal to the extreme.

First of all, the piece is in the key of Dm, and starts off on Bbmaj7#11. You don't have to know your chords to see that that is one messed up chord. Actually, the reason it is #11 is because the head (tune) starts on the note E, which is the #11 of Bb. This is no ordinary way to start a piece. The tritone (Bb and E together are a tritone) is not vulgar at all, but rather soft, though it does serve the purpose of making the listener immediately lose the key of the song. (In layman's terms - you don't know what note to expect the song to end.)

As if that's not bad enough (not that it's bad), the head is ten bars long. Western music is usually written in multiples of four, which is what the ear is used to hear. Jazz music, specifically, is almost always 12 or 32 bars long. So 10 bars means that intuitively, you will not know where the first bar of the chorus is, and generally don't know where you are in the tune. The fact that the first bar is not Dm does not help.

These two reasons are a large part of what makes this song modal. You 'float' in it, with hardly any sense of place or key. But it all fits in and makes sense. And it's beautiful.

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