Jingle Bells – Sample Lesson

Jingle BellsDashing through the snow

Here’s a fun song to play for Christmas. The song was originally composed in the late 1880’s in Massachusetts, USA. It was written for Thanksgiving rather than Christmas, but these days it’s become a popular seasonal number.

Listen to

Christmas Pudding iiYou’ll find that the verse is a bit too awkward for the 4 hole harmonica, so we’ve tabbed it out for 10 hole harp. The chorus is great for any harp however. If you choose to perform this song at Christmas time, but only play 4 hole harmonica, we’ve found it fun to make some movements while we sing the verse, before playing along to the chorus on our harps.

As usual, Purple tab is for 4 hole harmonicas. Orange and Brown tab is for 10 hole harmonicas. Orange is for playing in the higher octave, while brown is for the middle octave. In the higher octave, the A we need is a clean draw note 6D. In the middle octave however, the Brown tab requires a draw bend in hole 3D” to play the A. You can decide which you prefer. Note bending is an advanced key skill, which we usually tackle at the end of KS2 and in KS3. You can also download our Arrow Tabs by clicking on the orange icon here.

In every case, the numbers tell you which hole to play. Jingle Bells requires good use of repeat note playing. Also, D means draw (breathe in) and B means blow (breathe out). We’re using harmonicas in the key of C major. Here’s the whole thing on just one harmonica to give you a flavour.

Listen to

And no let’s break this down into more manageable sections. You can print off our arrow tab at the foot of the page.

Poinsettia wreath iVerse (10h harmonica)

Listen to

 6B    8B     8D     7B    6B      6B    6B    6B    8B    8D    7B    6D
 3B    5B     4D     4B    3D      3B    3B    3B    5B    4D    4B    3D”
Dash-ing through the  snow,    On      a     one-horse   o  –  pen  sleigh

Listen to

Rudolf 3 6D    9D    8B    8D    7D      9B    9B    9D    8D    8B
 3D”  5D    5B    4D    3D      6B    6B    5D     4D    5B
O’er   the   fields   we      go,    Laughing     all      the    way

Listen to

 6B    8B    8D     7B    6B       6B    8B    8D    7B    6D
 3B    5B    4D     4B    3B       3B    5B    4D    4B    3D”
Bells   on     bob – tail   ring,    Mak-ing    spi  –  rits  bright

Listen to

 6D    6D    9D    8B     8D    9B    9B    9B     9B    10D   9B    9D    8D    7B    
 3D”  3D”  5D    5B      4D    6B    6B    6B      6B    6D    6B    5D    4D    4B
What  fun      it       is       to     ride  and   sing    our    sleigh-ing   song   to – night

Christmas Stocking iChorus (4h and 10h harmonica)

 2B    2B     2B    2B    2B    2B    2B    3B    1B    1D    2B 

Listen to
 8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    9B    7B    8D    8B          
5B    5B    5B     5B    5B     5B    5B    6B    4B    4D    5B
Jin – gle   bells,   jin –  gle   bells,  Jin  – gle    all    the    way

 2D    2D    2D    2D    2D    2B    2B    2B    2B    2B    1D    1D    2B    1D

Listen to
 9D    9D    9D    9D    9D    8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    8D    8D    8B    8D         
 Night light i5D    5D    5D     5D    5D    5B    5B     5B    5B    5B     1D    1D     2B    1D
Oh    what   fun      it       is       to     ride    on      a     one-horse,   o – pen   sleigh

 2B    2B     2B    2B    2B    2B    2B    3B    1B    1D    2B

Listen to
 8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    8B    9B    7B    8D    8B        
 5B    5B    5B     5B    5B     5B    5B    6B    4B    4D    5B
Jin – gle   bells,   jin –  gle   bells,  Jin  – gle    all    the    way

 Santa Hat 2i2D    2D    2D    2D    2D    2B    2B    2B    2B    3B    3B    2D    1D    1B

Listen to
 9D    9D    9D    9D    9D    8B    8B    8B    8B    9B    9B    9D    8D    7B
 5D    5D    5D     5D    5D    5B     5B    5B    5B    6B    6B    5D    4D    4B
Oh   what   fun       it       is       to     ride    on      a     one-horse,   o – pen  sleigh

Christmas TreePerformance ideas
As verse is unsuitable for the 4 hole harmonica, your Harp Academy teacher will show you some movements you can make while you sing the words. If you perform Jingle Bells, it’s great fun to invite your audience to join in! It’s also great fun to shout Hey! at the end of line two in the chorus. Why not invite your audience to join in as well? You could prepare a large card to hold up and prompt them.

 

Key skills

  • Repeat notes
  • Musical registers
  • Transposing
  • Draw bend 3D
  • Music and movement
  • Performance