Copland composed many short works for solo instruments or small chamber groups in the mid 1920s. He intended to create various sets or suites, but many of these remained incomplete. Copland later repurposed the component parts, using them in different groupings, or publishing them individually. Sentimental Melody: Slow Dance is one of the latter. Written in 1926, it was originally titled Blues No. 1. In 1929, Copland allowed Schott to publish it as Sentimental Melody: Slow Dance in an album called Piano Pieces by Contemporary Composers, Volume III. Other composers represented in the volume were Bartok, Stravinsky, Milhaud, and Hindemith. Copland's Blues No. 2 of 1926 later became the fourth movement of Four Piano Blues (1948). He had also considered creating a five-movement suite of Sentimental Melodies around 1926, but abandoned that project and used most of the material elsewhere.