When you’re taking violin lessons, it’s important to find some easy violin songs to help you practice, boost your confidence, and improve your skills. With this list from San Francisco, CA violin teacher Carol Beth L., you will never run out of songs to play!
Whether you’re playing violin for yourself or for your family and friends, it’s helpful to have some relatively simple, familiar songs on hand. Perhaps those around you will even want to sing along.
Whatever the occasion, here are 50 easy songs to play on the violin for beginners.
Easy Violin Songs for Beginners
There are quite a few violin books with traditional (and often easy) Irish songs and fiddling songs. “Fiddler’s Philharmonic“, for instance, provides three basic parts in every volume and includes volumes for violin, viola, cello, and bass.
The parts in all four volumes can be mixed and matched to fit the group, or the songs can be played as solos. Some of the songs below can be found in “Fiddler’s Philharmonic”; most can also be found elsewhere.
Have fun learning some new songs that you can play on the violin!
1. “Bile ‘Em Cabbage Down”
2. “Cripple Creek”
3. “Old Joe Clark”
4. “Arkansas Traveler” This is the same tune as “Baby Bumblebee.” When sung with the right words, it can therefore also qualify as a children’s song (see the next list).
5. Swallowtail Jig”
6. “Si Bheag, Si Mhor”
7. “Scarborough Fair”
8. “St. Anne’s Reel”
9. “Ashokan Farewell”
10. “Oh Susanna”
Find the violin sheet music for these songs here.
Do you have a young violinist at home? Help your son or daughter learn how to play the violin with these easy violin songs for kids!
Most of these songs are available in many forms and from many sources, but you may not need music for all of them. See if you can play some of these songs by ear.
Note: The songs marked as rounds are particularly fun when you have more than one player or singer, and they allow you to create some relatively simple, beautiful harmonies.
1. “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”
2. “Mary Had a Little Lamb”
3. “Hot Cross Buns (round)”
4. “Go Tell Aunt Rhody”
5. “Frère Jacques” (Brother John – round)
6. “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” (round)”
7. “Have You Seen the Ghost of John” (round)
8. “London Bridge is Falling Down”
9. “Old McDonald Had a Farm”
10. “The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round”
11. “Des Colores” (The Colors)
12. “Los Pollitos Dicen” (The Chicks Say…)
If you plan to play for other people, here are some songs you can play that will make your friends and family sing along!
1. “America the Beautiful”
2. “House of the Rising Sun”
3. “Drink to me Only With Thine Eyes”
4. “Titanic Theme: Wherever you Go”
5. “Little Brown Jug”
6. “Do a Deer”
7. “A Thousand Years”
8. “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”
While the list here attempts to target those pieces that have become more common as solos or were originally intended to be possible solos, there are also many other famous classical melodies from larger works that are easily easy to play on the violin.
Examples include the final theme of Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture” and Grieg’s “In the Hall of the Mountain King”.
1. “Greensleeves / What Child is This”
2. “Ode to Joy”
3. “Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring”
4. “Bach’s Minuets 1, 2, and 3 in G from the Anna Magdelena Notebook”
5. “Schubert’s Ave Maria”
6. “Amazing Grace”
If you’re looking for easy Christmas duets specifically, Christmas Duets for Violin and Other C Instruments by the Hal Leonard Corporation is a great place to look. Like “Fiddler’s Philharmonic” (mentioned above), there are also editions for cello and viola that can be used to mix and match parts depending on the group.
If you’re playing alone, you can also play the melody part as a solo. Some of the songs from this book, along with some other suggestions, can be found in the list below.
1. “Hava Naguila”
2. “Oh Hannukah”
3. “Feliz Navidad”
4. “Happy Birthday to You”
5. “We Three Kings”
6. “Silent Night”
7. “Joy To the World”
8. “Jingle Bells”
9. “Deck the Halls”
10. “Oh Holy Night”
11. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”
12. “Frosty the Snowman”
13. “Little Drummer Boy”
14. “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”
In order to play these songs, you need the sheet music! Here are some of the best online resources for violin sheet music:
- Violin Sheet Music – downloadable violin and fiddle sheet music
- 8notes.com – free sheet music
- musicnotes.com – printable sheet music
There are also several helpful violin YouTube tutorials that will not only give you the sheet music, but also demonstrate how to play various songs.
If you’re looking for more videos, check out this guide to the best violin YouTube tutorials.
So there you have it, a huge list of easy violin songs that you can play! Whether you just started taking lessons or you’ve been playing for a while, these songs will help you learn, practice, and improve!
Image courtesy Alex Sanz