I'm trying to get Coltrane's solo on Flamenco Sketches from Kind of Blue by Miles Davis, and i think i'm missing out on what i read on the spread sheet. This is the relevant part (the beginning of the solo):


It's in the key of D major, so far so good.

But the first note being played is clearly (to my ears) is a b followed by a c note (not sharpen) while the notes state it begins with a c# followed by a d, and it just sounds awful. Am i reading the sheet wrong? (it's the official sheet by hal leonard) Or am i missing some theory regarding these notes and how to read them? (by the way, the last note should be d and not e#, same goes to that as well.

I'm trying to play this on a standard tuning electric guitar

  • 2
    This is probably music for a Bb instrument which means it's written a whole step higher than it sounds. Commented Oct 17, 2015 at 20:24
  • @ToddWilcox, thanks, but does it make sense that only the sharpen notes according to the scale are a step higher? all the other notes seem to be ok...
    – Itzik984
    Commented Oct 17, 2015 at 23:11
  • 2
    I've read that most of the commercial releases of "Kind of Blue" had the tape speed wrong, meaning that the recording you hear was higher in pitch than how it was performed. Could that have anything to do with the discrepancies you are hearing between the recording and the sheet music?
    – user1044
    Commented Oct 18, 2015 at 0:25
  • Here is a link to an article about the tape speed and playback issues with the "Kind of Blue" recording sessions. stereophile.com/thefifthelement/206fifth
    – user1044
    Commented Oct 18, 2015 at 0:30
  • @WheatWilliams, cool article! :) but it does not relate to the issue I was discussing, just pick up an instrument and play this part, you'll notice the horror :)
    – Itzik984
    Commented Oct 18, 2015 at 10:27

2 Answers 2


super old thread, but the answer is yes, it's a Bb flat sheet, you need to play it a step up.

For guitarists who can't be bothered to transpose just detune a tone and boom. D standard is great anyway.


option 1 : Your ears are wrong

option 2 : your PDF is wrong

My money is on Option 2,

When I was learning Donna Lee I noticed the part Jaco plays is slightly different than what Charlie Parker played, and even what Parker played is different than what was in my Realbook! Trust your ears! use a different PDF if you have to;) use transcribe software too!!!!!! it will slow the music down to an atomic speed so each of those 16th notes is about 3 seconds long ;)

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