What is What Child is This?, Understanding the Historical Context:
What Child is This?, otherwise known as “Greensleeves” or “The Manger Carol,” is an ancient English Christmas carol that was first published in the 16th century. It tells the story of Jesus Christ’s birth as he lies in a manger, surrounded by various animals and shepherds who came to visit him. While the tune has endured for centuries, it has changed slightly throughout history, with different versions developed by composers like William Chatterton Dix and John Stainer.
Understanding the Historical Context:
The song originally dates back to the mid-16th century, when it was attributed to Henry VIII. Some historians believe he may have written it for his estranged wife Catherine Parr as a sign of his repentance for their tumultuous relationship. At this time most religious music had been outlawed due to the Reformation and following Church of England ban on religious songs within two years following Henry’s death in 1547. This meant people had to create new types of songs to sing during church services and private devotions., which is why “What Child Is This?” is considered one of Europe’s most popular Christmas melodies during the Tudor period.
Throughout the centuries since its creation, “What Child Is This?” has remained somewhat unchanged, although many modern versions have adopted variations on the traditional melody and lyrics. The universal imagery surrounding Jesus’s charming nativity – from sheep and oxen keeping vigil around Him – make this song universally loved. Today there are at least 40 different official renditions created by musicians ranging from Mahalia Jackson to David Bowie and all genres in between!
How to Play the Chords of “What Child Is This?” in Key of G: Step-by-Step Instructions
“What Child Is This?” is a classic Christmas carol composed by William Chatterton Dix and arranged in many different ways. It’s usually played as a folk or choral piece but it can also be interpreted as a solo fingerstyle guitar song. The chords used in this version are fairly simple and are often referred to as the I-IV-V progression, meaning that you only need to know three basic chords to play the song: G (I), C (IV), and D7 (V).
The first step is to learn how to strum those chords correctly. For busy guitar players, most of these chords should be familiar shapes since you will use the same fingering positions just moved up and down the fretboard accordingly. If you need some refresher or extra help, make sure to review the chord charts below.
Once you got your chords strummed correctly and with ease, lay down the main pattern for “What Child Is This?” which goes like this: G – C – D7 – G twice and then ends on C. Since playing along with others may require that extra finesse—and more importantly keep everybody in time—make sure your strumming is rhythmically organized by counting out beats within each measure: 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + . Nothing fancy needed; just keeping this basic count will ensure everyone stays together throughout the whole performance.
One more helpful hint before we jump into playing it all together is alternating between two distinct picking patterns for each chord type so that they sound different from one another. That being said, experiment what fits best for your fingers; there is no right or wrong here; find something that works well for you! That done, let’s move further…
Now comes our last step! Here we go put all elements together while making sure we follow our tempo guidelines: G – C – D7 – G twice (1+2+3+4+ etc..) followed by a closing measure of C chord when playing “What Child Is This?” in key of G. Congratulations! Together we put together all eight measures of beautiful music just in time for Christmas season – enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions about Playing “What Child Is This?” in Key of G
“What Child Is This?” is an immensely popular and beloved traditional Christmas carol. Written in 1865 by William Chatterton Dix, the song has been practiced, performed, and sung in countless homes and churches over the years. The song is typically performed in a form of the key of G major on guitar or keyboard.
However, the piece can present challenging chords to the beginner player. Thus, there are some frequently asked questions about playing this particular holiday favorite that many musicians encounter. To help you out with any confused spots along your way to mastery of “What Child Is This?”, here are a few pointers for learning this classic tune:
Q: What progressions should I use to play “What Child is This?”?
A: Most instances of “What Child Is This?” begin with an I-IV-V (G, C, D) progression (ex referred to as 1 chord – 4 chord – 5 chord). These three chords form a common pattern found throughout all genres of music – from jazz and classical to rock ‘n’ roll and country! From here, there are several options for how one approaches playing out the rest of the song. Try exploring 3-chord positions with G Major/E Minor (Gmaj / Em), followed by sections featuring variations of extended sus2 & sus4 chords sprinkled throughout. Additionally, you can use short two or one bar melody runs which make occasional appearances during certain transitions in order to spice up your rendition even further.
Q: Should I use open chords when performing “What Child Is This?”?
A: Learning open guitar cords on their own are great for adding quick embellishments and textures; however, it isn’t mandatory that you make use of them for this particular song as far as rhythm goes since most basic renditions feature mainly closed chord shapes instead. That being said though – if you have good finger-picking skills then feel free to experiment around with generating interesting parts using open string[s]! Indeed – nothing beats some jolly arpeggios flying from left hand lifts come time for choruses either! There’s no hard rule against incorporating those bluesy sounding 6th strings to brighten up your holiday festival season even more 🙂
Q: How should I approach strumming “What Child Is This?”?
A: Whether folk strumming style or classical arpeggios – let your technique be determined by what best captures and expresses both joyous & reverent energy simultaneously… AND suits your level adeptness/style preferences at hand! If simple quarter note 16th patterns just seem too tame or unadventurous then spice ’em up thru vibrant 8th note runs propelled by both index + middle fingers – thereby enabling accents off hits off beat(s) thrown into otherwise standard grooves… Meanwhile solid Eighth & Sixteenth combinations like those heard emanating from Nashville studios we recommend trying out during ad-lib style fills dropped amid quieter versus themes section[s]…Allowing measure run flurries remain spirited/in motion without heavily burdening/diluting core progressions hiding underneath
Top 5 Facts about “What Child Is This?” and Its Chords in Key of G
What Child is This? Is a traditional Christmas carol that has been in existence for hundreds of years. It describes the birth of Jesus and is one of the most beloved Christmas songs of all time. The song was first written by William Dix in 1865, though the chords have likely evolved over time as the carol itself has grown in popularity. Here are some facts about What Child Is This?, its history, and its chords when played in the key of G:
1) The song is best known with four simple chords: G, D/F#, Em, and C. When playing these four familiar chords during a rendition of What Child Is This?, it closely follows what’s called thousands-years old “Sarum Plainsong Melodic” – which means to use ascending thirds rather than fourths or fifths. As such, each chord appears in 3rd intervals (i.e., G-B-D).
2) Though the style and sound may be derived from Medieval times, this tune wasn’t actually born until late 19th century. Written by William Chatterton Dix around 1865 as part of a poem he wrote after being struck by a severe case of illness while on vacation at sea. His original lyrics included references to Mary with motherly care rocking Jesus asleep – something that wasn’t included in later versions and editions of What Child Is This?.
3) Until relatively recently What Child Is This? had remained fairly consistent over the decades since its release – but that changed on December 16th 2018 when an unusual crossover version featuring Pentatonix made headlines across pop culture forums online! Drawing inspiration from jazz music theory, this unique collaboration created entirely new bridges between ancient melodies and modern harmonies – making use of extended chords like c/Baug/Adim7 & g/Aadd9 etc., taking the traditional origin song completely out-of-the box!
4) Aside from turning this beloved English carol into something unexpected; Pentatonix’s version also achieved another equally interesting feat amongst their listeners: introducing acapella vocals into Mainstream media via Youtube viral videos! Placing their take on What child is this onto social media podiums like Instagram or Facebook soon followed, further amplifying their influence via mainstream fan engagement worldwide!
5) And last but not least; what makes this arrangement extra special— aside from offering something fresh & edgy to captivated audiences everywhere—is how easily applicable it is! Its amazing how anyone can play these open voiced chords using just 3 simple shapes; again following “Sarum Plainsong Melodic” principal described earlier – and pick through them singing your own harmonizations..in ANY KEY you please ! now THAT’S sweet music if you ask us… 😉 enjoy !!
Uncovering Secrets behind the Music Theory in “What Child Is This?” In Key Of G
“What Child Is This?” is a popular Christmas carol that has been performed by numerous artists in various genres. While the song is beloved and well-known, there are some interesting music theory concepts lurking beneath the surface of this festive tune. Let’s take a look at what can be found hidden within the song structure of “What Child Is This?” in the key of G.
First off, it is important to note that this timeless carol features two distinct sections: the verse and chorus. These two portions are musically distinguishable with the presence of different chords in each section and their contrasting melodies. In the verse section we hear an A minor chord (A-C-E) followed by a Bm7b5 chord (B-D-F-Ab). The Bm7b5 provides both forward harmonic motion while also maintaining tension which helps move the music towards resolution in both dynamic and tonal areas; an important technique to outline a particular feeling or emotion within any given piece.
The chorus centers around a I – IV – V progression in G major with G – C – D chords – all three being diatonic triads from within this specific key signature. Through modulating between these three respective tonal voices, audience members are taken on a “musical journey” as they experience shifts between sections as if traveling through shifting sonic landscapes or alternatively experiencing changes in temperature and atmosphere as one would during physical travel.
Digging deeper still, we arrive at some more advanced uses of harmony and theoretical concepts behind this beloved holiday classic. One such example involved tightly weaving vibrant ninths into several points throughout its composition; most notably during both respective build up sections located near its climactic double bar ending markings – where moments lasting only fractions of a second offer thrilling musical surprises that many insiders use to communicate something extra special before leaving us with its beautiful reapproachment at its final cadence back to home key A minor, bittersweetly providing closure until our next visit to reexamine historical pieces like “What Child Is This?” once more gain insight – taking away new knowledge with every listen along more practiced ears!
Making the Most Out of The Melodies and Rhythms Present In What Child is this? in Key Of G
What Child is This? is a beautiful Christmas carol that originated in the 16th century and has become a holiday standard. The song has a simple melody, but there are many variations and embellishments available to make it more detailed and interesting. When played in the key of G, this traditional carol can be quite versatile and captivating.
The easiest way to make the most out of What Child Is This? in the key of G is to use arpeggios and phrases. An arpeggio is when notes of a chord are played separately instead of simultaneously, creating a smooth ascending or descending pattern. You can use arpeggios to create new textures on the melody line by playing through chords like G-B-D-G and D-E-F#-A. This technique will add movement as well as some nice harmonic accompaniment and give your rendition greater dimension.
To reach its full potential, What Child Is This? will benefit from simple rhythmic accents in both the chorus and verse sections. As you sing each phrase, think about how various rhythms can enhance the overall feel of each word or line–this could be anything from syncopated half note triplets in those short melodic patterns leading up to choruses such as “what child is this…” or grace notes while articulating bigger intervals within each phrase. These accents will add more energy to one’s interpretation and make it sound truly unique!
Finally, don’t forget about incorporating improvisation techniques into your version of What Child Is This? Try exploring different scales within the same key signature—such as minor pentatonic, blues scale, natural major for example—transitioning between them using slides or hammer ons/pull offs around sections that repeat often such as bridge phrases (G–C–D). Additionally bending strings on certain notes can create vibrational elements that bring added warmth or tension dependent on how far away from their original pitch you pull them too! Experimenting with these techniques opens up so many possibilities for creative playmaking within any piece making it even easier than ever before to craft engaging performances every time you step up to perform!