This lessons package includes 15 Christmas Sing-A-Long lessons and 6 instrumental fingerpicking arrangements.
Lesson 1: Here Comes Santa Claus - Holiday Sing Along
This is one of the more challenging Holiday songs in that it uses quite a few barre chords up the neck, and they change pretty quickly. It is done in the key of D Major.
Lesson 2: Frosty The Snowman - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
The instrumental arrangement of Frosty incorporates the melody into an alternating bass accompaniment to create a bouncy, upbeat toe-tapper. It is also in the key of A Major, like the strumming version, which makes this a good compliment to that one that can be brought in as a solo break when you are singing the campfire version.
Lesson 3: Frosty The Snowman - Holiday Sing Along
This is a somewhat country-style arrangement of Frosty, using a strumming pattern with alternating bass notes. It is in the key of A Major, which means a few barre chords are used as well.
Lesson 4: Let It Snow - Holiday Sing Along
This arrangement is done in the key of D Major and introduces a few diminished chords, common in many of the pop-holiday songs from this era.
Lesson 5: Jingle Bells - Holiday Sing Along
This is about as easy as a strumming song and arrangement can get. It uses a very basic strumming pattern and only 4 or 5 open chords that all beginning guitar students should know. It is played in the key of D Major.
Lesson 6: What Child Is This - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
This instrumental arrangement of the old English folk song Greensleeves is very basic and a good song for beginning guitar students. It is in 3/4 time, also known as waltz time, keeps a steady bass pattern, and is in the key of A Minor.
Lesson 7: Up On The Housetop - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
This is a basic arrangement of the Christmas Classic.
Lesson 8: Silent Night - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
Silent Night is generally played in the key of A Major and this solo arrangement uses that as a starting point to combine the melody with bass notes for the chords into a fairly easy lesson. It is in 3/4 time and uses a bass patter similar to What Child Is This where the 2nd and 3rd bass notes are the same.
Lesson 9: Winter Wonderland - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
This is another John Fahey- inspired arrangement with ragtime leanings using the Travis-style accompaniment to create a fun instrumental. Like the campfire version, it is in the key of C Major and can be used as a solo break in the middle of the vocal version.
Lesson 10: Deck The Halls - Holiday Sing Along
This is another very easy song that only uses a few open chords and a simple strumming pattern to accompany a very catchy tune. It has a couple of quick changes, but again, with easy chords.
Lesson 11: The Twelve Days Of Christmas - Holiday Sing Along
A fairly complex song in that there are a few different chord progressions to different verses, The Twelve Days Of Christmas is a very fun song to do at Holiday Sing-Alongs. This arrangement is in the key of E Major, good for most vocal ranges but heavy on barre chords and quick changes.
Lesson 12: Santa Claus Is Coming To Town - Holiday Sing Along
This popular song is done in the key of A Major and includes some moving bass lines through the chord progression, making it a bit more complicated than some of our other Holiday lessons. The strumming pattern is a basic country-style one.
Lesson 13: Angels We Have Heard On High - Solo Fingerstyle Arrangement
This is a ragtime arrangement of a Christmas classic that uses a Travis-style (alternating bass) accompaniment to the syncopated melody, done in a style similar to the way John Fahey played it as part of his Christmas series of albums, in the key of C Major.
Lesson 14: Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer - Holiday Sing Along
This Campfire version (of one of the best-known holiday songs) uses a simple strumming pattern with open chords in the key of G. The lesson also looks at the introduction, which uses one barre chord.
Lesson 15: We Wish You A Merry Christmas - Holiday Sing Along
A simple 3/4 strumming pattern is used here, with the chords being in the key of E Major. This means plenty of barre chords, as well as a general explanation of the relationships between the chords in a key.
Lesson 16: Winter Wonderland - Holiday Sing Along
Winter Wonderland is another great example of the pop-holiday song that has a very sophisticated chord progression. It is done in the key of C Major and includes a few diminished chords as well as a couple of other altered or inverted chords.
Lesson 17: White Christmas - Guitar Accompaniment
Irving Berlin's classic Christmas tune has been difficult for many guitar players to come up with a good way of accompanying a singer, or group. This lesson tries to present a reasonable way to accurately represent the chord progression. It is not reasonable to do it with just a few chords, you do have to venture a bit into some jazz voicings, as well as finger strumming techniques and quick changes.
Lesson 18: Silver Bells - Holiday Sing Along
This is an easy lesson on strumming and singing this Christmas Classic.
Lesson 19: The Christmas Song - Holiday Sing A Long
Mel Torme and Robert Wells wrote The Christmas Song in 1945, during a very hot summer when Robert had written down catch word phrases like Yuletide carols, Eskimos, Jack Frost nipping, and Chestnuts roasting, and Mel ran with it. The song was first recorded by Nat King Cole and is now one of the most iconic standards of our time.
This lesson is mostly how I might play it when accompanying a singer, rather than my usual instrumental approach, but even still it has some tricky chords and changes. Most of the chords should be familiar, including barres from the E and A families, but a few are more common in the jazz world. There are also some thoughts on the rhythm and right hand techniques.
Lesson 20: Please Come Home For Christmas - Holiday Sing Along
Please Come Home For Christmas is a popular Holiday tune that has been done by dozens of artists since 1960, when blues piano player Charles Brown wrote it. This lesson is based loosely on the Eagles' version, released in 1978. The lesson includes explanations of the common 32-bar form used in thousands of songs, as well as different accompaniment styles for songs in 6/8 or 12/8 time.
Lesson 21: I'll Be Home For Christmas - Sing-A-Long
I’ll Be Home For Christmas was written in 1943 and became a Christmas classic in a very short time. It has been recorded by dozens, if not hundreds of artists over the years. This lesson goes over the chord progression and a way to play it to accompany singers. It is loosely based on the way Elvis Presley did it in 1957.
Like many songs from the Tin Pan Alley era of songwriting, it includes many colorful chords, particularly diminished sevenths. The lesson covers a few different ways of playing them, as well as little theory breakdown of the interval of a sixth and how the intro uses a descending line of parallel sixths. There are also quite a few barre chords involved.
The song is done in the key of A Major, which can be capoed to the first fret to match Elvis’ original in the key of Bb.