There are a lot of things to love about Christmas, but there’s nothing that really makes me feel the spirit of the season like Christmas music. And as a guitarist you carry the great responsibility of knowing at least a handful of these amazing pieces of music to carry the occasional family Christmas jam session. Here are seven easy to learn Christmas songs that are absolute must-learns for any guitarist.
Written in 1818 by an Austrian primary school teacher, Silent Night has since been translated into over 140 different languages and is undoubtedly one of the best loved pieces of Christmas music the world over. And what’s great about this song is that it follows a simple three chord structure and retains the same melody no matter which language it is sung in.
You can check out a great lesson for this tune here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U7LmaL6Up-A
Oh Holy Night
Probably my all-time favorite piece of Christmas music, this song gives me chills every time I listen to it. Composed in 1847 by Adolphe Adam, the song has since been interpreted by some of modern music’s best loved voices like Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Josh Groban, Whitney Houston and even progressive metal giants Dream Theater.
Even Eric Cartman got in on the action with this one – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U7LmaL6Up-A
Written in 1970 by Jose Feliciano, Feliz Navidad is probably one of the best loved Christmas pop songs the world over and Feliciano’s recorded version is one of the most downloaded and played Christmas songs in the U.S and Canada.
Feliciano himself has a great guitar lesson for the song on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wOIjCqQkA3w
Jingle Bell Rock
Written by Bobby Helms in 1957, Jingle Bell Rock is one of those Christmas tunes that kind of rocks. The song’s also been covered by everyone from Rascal Flatts to Neil Diamond. Learn to rock on this simple tune and you’re guaranteed to be the star of any Christmas jamm session.
The song was even featured on the 2004 comedy Mean Girls – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h81UOjlFmMs
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
Written in 1793 by Charles Wesley, this is one of the oldest, and in my opinion, one of the most beautiful Christmas carols ever composed. While Wesley’s original version was much slower and more solemn, the tune was reworked and tweaked over the course of nearly hundred years until we ended up the version that is known and loved today.
Celtic Woman with a beautiful version of the tune – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xw38pGhPXIk
We Three Kings
Written in 1857 by the rector John Henry Hopkins, this is one of the few early Christmas Carols where both the lyrics and the music were written by the same composer. The song might be simple, but it’s quite the goose-bump-inducing epic.
The Beach Boys even released their own poignant version of the tune in 1964 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qKYshBS4xts
Written in 1934 by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith, Winter Wonderland is just one of those feel-good Christmas pop staples. The tune has also been touched by a whole heap of musicians including Annie Lenox, Barrie Manilow, Bob Dylan, Demi Lovato, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Michael Bolton, Ozzy Osbourne, and Willie Nelson.
Learn the song on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YtuU5m3eY0
Happy learning and a Merry Christmas from all of us here at Guitar Girl Magazine!