Christmas is one of the most festive and happy holidays around the world. Aside from being a time of gift-giving, it’s also the perfect season to visit family who is living far away.
Being a time for get-togethers, wouldn’t it be nice to surprise them by playing a Christmas song you can all sing to? That would be a great way to bond as you reminisce about the happy times you spent together.
If you’re looking for easy Christmas songs on guitar that you can play for your family, you came to the right place. We have compiled some of the yuletide season’s most popular songs with the easiest chords – so you can impress the family with your guitar skills.
Easy Christmas Songs To Play On Guitar
Having said all of that, here are 15 easy and best Christmas songs to learn on guitar to hone your skills. Check out this list of easy Christmas songs and learn to play them quickly!
1. Jingle Bells
The first song on our list is “Jingle Bells”. This holiday classic is perhaps one of the most widely recognized – if not the most widely-recognized – Christmas songs around the world. With its fast-paced tone and cheerful lyrics, it’s easy to see why it’s a favorite.
Originally published in 1857 by James Lord Pierpont, the song has been popularized through various versions throughout the years – with the Dean Martin version being our favorite.
This Christmas song has a reference to the sound that horses make during the winter season. During the old days, the harnesses of these horses had bells attached to produce sounds to alert nearby people and carriages. This was a way to avoid a collision, which was especially rampant when there was snow.
With easy chords such as G, C, Am, A7, D7, and D, there’s no doubt that it’s a beginner-level Christmas song. And being such a well-known song, it will surely be a hit with the whole family.
2. Silent Night
If you’re looking for a more mellow tune to play, then “Silent Night” would be a great choice.
This easy Christmas song is one of the oldest on this list, with the melody written in 1818 by Franz Xaver Gruber and with text by Joseph Mohr. It was originally written in their native German but was translated to English by John Freeman Young in 1859.
“Silent Night” is a song of importance to many religions since it narrates the holy night when Jesus Christ was born. Culturally, UNESCO also recognized its significance and declared it to be an intangible cultural heritage in 2011.
Despite its existence for more than two centuries, “Silent Night” remains to be one of the best Christmas songs of today. It’s also easy to play – with its mellow tone and C, G, and F chords.
3. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
Aside from Jingle Bells, “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” is another classic yuletide carol – and it’s perfect for those who want to learn how to play Christmas songs on the guitar.
It narrates the story of Santa’s bright red-nosed reindeer who helped save Christmas. And who doesn’t love such a heartwarming story on such a festive occasion?
The original song was written by Johnny Marks and was initially released in 1949. Surprisingly, it was based on the beloved character from the story, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which was written by his brother-in-law.
Until today, this song is widely popular during Christmas time among children and adults alike. And with basic chords such as A, D, and E, it’s one of the most popular 3-chord Christmas songs of today.
4. The First Noel
One of the best acoustic guitar Christmas songs – if not the best – has to be “The First Noel.” With chords like G, D, and C, there’s no doubt that it’s one of the easiest melodies to play. And with such a mellow tune to it, an acoustic guitar helps bring out the sincere sound t at this song wants to portray.
This song is a traditional English carol and was of Cornish origins entitled The First Nowell. While details of who composed it remain lost in history, a published form was made popular in the 1800s.
Since then, the song has been a popular Christmas melody with various versions from famous singers like Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, and Gabby Barrett.
5. Feliz Navidad
“Feliz Navidad” is another popular choice for the best Christmas guitar songs for beginners. You only need four chords to play it – G, C, D, and Em – and they’re among the simplest chords you can play.
The song has its origins in 1970 when it was written by Jose Feliciano. Feliz Navidad translates to Merry Christmas in English, and it is filled with lyrics that reflect the composer’s sincere greeting to the world.
The fact that it was written in Feliciano’s native Spanish is a nod to his Puerto Rican origins, who admitted that he was feeling homesick for being away from his family on such a special holiday. And that shows us how special this Christmas song truly is.
6. White Christmas by Bing Crosby & Marjorie Reynolds
When we think of Christmas guitar songs, “White Christmas” always holds a special place in our hearts. Aside from its mellow tune that perfectly complements the heartfelt lyrics, there’s just something nostalgic about this song that takes us back to our childhood.
The song was originally written by Irving Berlin in 1942 to be part of the soundtrack for the film, Holiday Inn. It even went on to win an Academy Award for Best Original Song in the same year. That proves how much of a hit it was back then.
Today, one of the most popular versions was by Bing Crosby. In fact, Crosby’s version sold over 50 million copies around the world, which is why it was also recognized as the world’s best-selling single.
It’s not surprising that this award-winning song is also one of the best Christmas songs for guitar. With chords such as C, Am, Dm, G, G7, F, Fm, and C7, intermediate level players with little practice time can get it right in time for Christmas – and impress the whole family with it.
7. We Wish You A Merry Christmas
“We Wish You a Merry Christmas” is one of the most beginner-friendly Christmas songs for guitar. It’s also one of the oldest carols we have heard of, so it’s impossible to meet someone who has never heard of it.
The history of the carol remains unclear, but the melodic greeting has always been popular, even before its recording in the 18th century.
At its core, it is a heartfelt way to greet people during this special holiday. And since you can play it with chords like G, C, A, D, B7, Em, and Am, you can easily greet your family and friends with this carol when Christmas time comes.
8. All I Want For Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey
Another pop song that made its way to our hearts and ears every Christmas is “All I Want for Christmas is You.”
This song was first released in 1994 and was co-written by Mariah Carey with Walter Afanasieff. The song became such a big hit that it earned Carey the title, Queen of Christmas. In fact, the song is also the source of numerous pop culture adaptations, which catapulted it as a household song every Christmas.
The song has such a catchy melody and hopeful lyrics that are truly reminiscent of the Christmas spirit. Admittedly, it’s not a song for absolute beginners due to having barre chords. But, it is still quite easy to play for someone with a little bit of guitar practice with chords like G, C, D, B, Em, E7, Am, B7, E, D7, and Cm.
9. Last Christmas by Wham
When we think of Christmas songs with the most versions ever sung, “Last Christmas” always comes into mind. We think it’s because It’s one of the simple Christmas songs for guitar that you can play.
Despite being a pop song from the British duo Wham!, “Last Christmas” became a holiday staple for its catchy melody line and relatable lyrics. While it’s a song about heartbreak, part of it gives us a ray of hope about finding new love during such a festive season.
The song was originally released by the duo in 1984, and it remains a Christmas hit until today, with renditions from pop favorites such as Ashley Tisdale, Ariana Grande, and Carly Rae Jepsen, to name a few. It was even sung in the hit musical TV series, Glee. That’s how popular it is.
You can play this song with D, Bm, Em, and A chords with a capo on the 2nd fret – the repeating chord sequence only proves how simple it is.
10. Deck The Halls (Debby Ryan)
Another traditional Christmas carol that is still making waves every yuletide season is “Deck the Halls.” With its upbeat rhythm and playful lyrics, this song is a reflection of the true happiness that the season brings.
The song’s melody dates back to the 16th century, as part of a Welsh New Year’s carol entitled Nos Galan. But, the English lyrics we know today find their origins in 1862, when it was written by Thomas Oliphant.
If you want to impress your friends and family with this song, you’re in luck. With simple chords such as D, A, G, Em, and E, there’s no doubt that this is one of the easiest Christmas songs to play on guitar for beginners.
11. Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree by Brenda Lee
“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” by Brenda Lee is one of the holiday favorite songs around the world. This song was written by Johnny Marks and popularized by singer Brenda Lee, who recorded it at the age of 13 in 1958.
The cheerful lyrics about dancing and singing around a decorated Christmas tree reflect the joy and excitement of the Yuletide season.
The song would not be another super easy Christmas song to learn on guitar but a challenging one for novice guitar students as it requires barre chord. However, intermediate-level players can even add more flair and creativity to their rendition with a few additional chords.
12. Santa Claus Is Coming to Town by Bruce Springsteen
When we think of Christmas as kids, we often associate the holiday with Jolly Old Saint Nick. That’s why the song “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” also holds a special place in our hearts.
This upbeat Christmas favorite is attributed to J. Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie and was notably recorded in 1934. Because of its popularity, it is the subject of various versions throughout the years – with our favorite being the rock version by Bruce Springsteen.
Fortunately, the song can be played with chords like G, C, Em, Am, D7, Dm, A, and D. And that will allow you to reminisce about your childhood with the family this coming holiday season.
13. Blue Christmas
Another mellow song that’s perfect for acoustic guitar playing is “Blue Christmas.” With its mellow tune and heartbreaking lyrics, anyone who has experienced heartache during such a festive season can surely relate to this song.
“Blue Christmas” was written in 1948 by Bill Hayes and Jay W. Johnson. But, it wasn’t until 1957 that it received its big break when Elvis Presley released his version of the song. Elvis Presley gave the song a special country touch that truly made listeners feel the unrequited love story behind it.
If you want to play this song, you’d be happy to know that it has simple chords like E, B7, E7, A, and F#. Anyone with minimal guitar-playing skills can surely play this song with ease.
14. Good King Wenceslas
“Good King Wenceslas” is a traditional Christmas carol that has been around since the 1800s. It was first published in 1853 and was based on a 10th-century legend about a Bohemian ruler Wenceslas I, who went to a poor man during the harsh winter weather to give charity.
Despite its age, the song remains popular today among both children and adults. The lyrics of the song are filled with messages of compassion, making it a great addition to any festive playlist.
The Irish Rover version of this timeless Christmas classic is an uplifting song that is sure to bring a bit of cheer during the holiday season. This is an easy song for beginners and intermediates alike with simple guitar chords such as G, Em, C and D.
15. Christmas Time by Bryan Adams
“Christmas Time” is an iconic seasonal favorite, written by Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance in 1985. The song contains hopeful lyrics about a peaceful and loving Christmas celebration.
The melody perfectly breathes life into the lyrics, giving it a nostalgic feel about families getting together during this special season. That’s why it also became his most popular Christmas song.
Fortunately, you can also play this song for your family this coming Christmas season. With chords like C, G, D, E7, Am, Am7, Dm, and F, you won’t have a hard time learning it at all.
16. A Holly Jolly Christmas by Burl Ives
“A Holly Jolly Christmas” was written by Johnny Marks in 1962, but it was in 1964 that it became a huge hit. This is owing to Burl Ives’ iconic voice that perfectly delivered the story behind the song.
With its acoustic guitar solo and mellow arrangement, it’s easy to see why it’s one of the most beginner-friendly Christmas guitar songs. To play this song, you only need the chords C, G, G7, Em, Am, D7, and F. Quite easy, right?
17. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
Another English Christmas carol that made its way into this list is “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.” And with chords like G, D, C, Em, D7, E7, and A7, it also has one of the most beautiful melodies that you can play on an acoustic guitar.
The harmonious melody for this carol, as well as its original lyrics, was first published in 1739. It is attributed to Charles Wesley and was published in a collection entitled Hymns and Sacred Poems.
Being a song that depicts a choir of angels singing praises to God, it is also recognized as a praise song in various religions. And we believe this religious significance plays an important role in how it remains popular throughout the years.
18. We Three Kings (George Strait)
“We Three Kings” is a Christmas carol that dates back to the 17th century when it was originally written by John Henry Hopkins Jr. The song narrates the story of three men who travel from far away to Bethlehem following the direction of a star to honor the baby Jesus.
This carol has been covered many times, but George Strait’s version is one of the most remarkable. He released it as part of his Christmas album “Fresh Cut Christmas” in 2006, and his classic country style made it a favorite for thousands of people.
The guitar chords you need to play this Christmas song are Am, Em, C, G/B, F, Dm and E, so it can be easily played by beginners and intermediate guitarists alike. As you play each chord, let the classic carol take over and feel the Christmas spirit.
19. Happy Xmas (War Is Over) by John & Yoko/Plastic Ono Band
“Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” by John & Yoko/Plastic Ono Band is a timeless classic that is perfect for acoustic or electric guitar. This protest song, written in 1971 by the iconic couple John Lennon and Yoko Ono, has been regarded as one of the most popular Christmas standards.
With its meaningful lyrics about peace and unity, the song has become a holiday anthem that many people love to hear every Christmas season. Musically, this song is also quite straightforward with open position chords, making it an easy song for beginner to mid-level guitarists.
If you’re looking for an easy acoustic guitar song to play this Christmas season, then Happy Xmas (War Is Over) is a great choice. With its acoustic charm and uplifting lyrics, it will surely bring out the festive spirit in everyone.
20. I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday by Wizzard
Wizzard’s Christmas rock tune “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday” is a great easy-to-play song for beginners and intermediate guitarists. After its release in December 1973, the catchy track became an everlasting hit during the season of joy.
The song is mostly in the key of D and you can play it with basic open chords like D, G, A, Bm and Em. But the key changes to D on the chorus part, where chords have to be changed accordingly.
The cheery, upbeat lyrics are easy to remember, and the chorus of children singing in the background adds an extra layer of fun, making this song perfect for Christmas guitar strumming.
Related Article: If you enjoyed playing these easy Christmas songs, be sure to check out our article on "Easy Rock Songs on Guitar" for more fun and simple tunes to add to your repertoire.
More Best Christmas Songs To Play On Guitar
|SL||Song Name||Artist||Link Of Tutorial|
|21.||Jingle Bell Rock||Bobby Helm||Video Lesson|
|22.||The Little Drummer Boy||Various||Video Lesson|
|23.||Joy To The World||Various||Video Lesson|
|24.||Let It Snow, Let It Snow||Dean Martin||Video Lesson|
|25.||Silver Bells||Bing Crosby||Video Lesson|
|26.||Twelve Days Of Christmas||John Denver||Video Lesson|
|27.||Winter Wonderland||Dean Martin||Video Lesson|
|28.||Wonderful Christmastime||Paul Mccartney||Video Lesson|
|29.||What Child Is This||Johnny Cash||Video Lesson|
|30.||O Little Town of Bethlehem||Garth Brooks||Video Lesson|
|31.||Driving Home for Christmas||Chris Rea||Video Lesson|
|32.||It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas||Meredith Wilson||Video Lesson|
|33.||It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year||Andy Williams||Video Lesson|
|34.||Merry Christmas Everybody||Slade||Video Lesson|
|35.||Away In A Manger||Casting Crowns||Video Lesson|
If you still need assistance, check out these helpful guitar song books:
About the Author
Gustavo is a music teacher and classical guitar player from Brazil, currently residing in Dublin, Ireland. He holds a graduate degree in Classical Guitar Performance from the Federal University of Pelotas. In 2020, Gustavo successfully completed a Master's degree in Sound Engineering from the Academy of Sound in Ireland.