Master An Easy Version of “Jingle Bells” Just In Time For the Holidays
Written in 1857 by James Pierpont, “Jingle Bells” was originally a Thanksgiving children’s production. (It was first referred to as “a merry little jingle” by one of Pierpont’s neighbors, who had the only piano in town.) The community is said to have liked it so much that they asked the children to repeat it at Christmas. It has been a holiday favorite ever since.
The accompaniment pattern shown below is used throughout this book: a bass note followed by a strum. In a song like this with a 4/4 time signature (that’s four beats per measure, also known as common time), you play that bass/strum pattern twice in each measure. You can play with a pick or, if you prefer to use your right-hand fingers, alternate between your thumb for the bass notes and the other fingers for the strum. Note that the G-chord fingering shown uses your ring finger on the sixth string, middle finger on the fifth string, and pinky on the first string, which makes it a little easier to switch to the other chords. If you prefer, you can play the G with your middle finger on the sixth string, index on the fifth string, and ring finger on the first string.