Introduction: Understanding What Child Is This? and How to Play It on Guitar
Child Is This? is a Christmas carol that has been sung throughout the holiday season since the 15th century. It’s origins are somewhat obscure, with different versions being found in multiple countries. Typically, this song is used for worship services during Christmastime, but it’s also become a well-loved tune for outside of religious services.
As you revel in the holiday spirit and explore guitar playing over the course of this festive season, why not take on learning how to play Child Is This? Let us dig into what makes this carol so unique and beloved; plus, uncover ways to approach playing it on your six string acoustic guitar!
The Lyrics To Child Is This?
The lyrics for Child Is This? are short and sweet (it’s only four lines!), making memorizing them relatively straightforward — even if it’s your first time hearing them. As previously mentioned, different variations come with slight differences in wording changes or other small updates. Here are some of the more common lyrics which came out of England:
“Child is this that lays him down
To slumber on a cold winter’s night?
This, this is Christ our King
Whom angels greet with anthems of delight!”
How To Play “Child Is This” On Guitar
With its slow rhythm, fingerpicking pattern (which we will get into shortly!) and mix between major and minor chords, “Child Is This” can be picked up quite easily by guitarists of all skill levels who want to add it to their repertoire of carols! The song typically starts off slowing with just your voice – enabling you to have fun singing along with yourself as you play – before amping up in intensity until you arrive at an epic crescendo for a powerful finish. Typically played within 12 bars or short phrases during each verse: D – D/F# – Em – G7 C
Step 1: Learn the Basic Chords Used in the Song
The first step to learning any new song is to familiarise yourself with the chords used in the song. Chords provide a foundation and serve as the building blocks of music. They can be broken down into basic categories, such as major, minor, diminished, and augmented. Depending on the style or genre of music you’re playing and your level of expertise, some chords will be easier for you to execute and some more difficult. Once you’ve figured out which chords are used in a particular song it can make learning it much simpler. Place your fingers on the fretboard in whatever configuration produces the chord sound required and practice transitioning between them fluidly. With time and practice these transitions should become second nature
Step 2: Learn the Melody
Once you have acquired a working knowledge of the chords used within the piece of music you can move onto learning how they interact with each other musically. This means paying close attention to which notes from each chord find themselves making up part of or all of a melody line. If a melody moves from G major to B minor then try to figure out why certain notes worked better in each specific context than others – try sliding up or down for emphasis for example – as this information is specific but also critical knowledge that must not be overlooked if one wants to produce good quality sounds when playing acoustic guitar solos for this song or another one!
Step 3: Experiment with Improvisation
The next step is to start experimenting with improvisations on top off your newly learned melodies and chords. You may want to begin practicing scales over sections with chord progressions that repeat themselves while being sure not too move too far away from what’s already established at least initially during your experiments until you have developed enough confidence in your improvising abilities that enable you break away from theory without becoming lost in creative unknowns! Try soloing over different pairings of frequently re-occurring major & minor keys of single chords before attempting jazzier
Step 2: Strumming Patterns and Techniques for Playing What Child Is This?
Strumming patterns and techniques for playing the carol “What Child Is This?” can vary quite a bit depending on the arrangement you’re working with, but there are some standard guidelines that hold true regardless of which arrangement you choose. Before diving into what child is this strumming, it’s important to understand the basics. Beginners should start by mastering basic strum activity and counting beats in 4/4 time. Knowing which notes to accentuate is also essential for a beautiful rendition of the carol.
Now when it comes to strumming “What Child Is This?” beginners might opt for an all-downstroke approach since this will help in keeping up a consistent rhythm throughout. To do this, count 1+2+3+4+ and play downstrokes on each beat as you count aloud (or silently in your head). Intermediate players can expand their strumming capability by mixing up downstrokes and upstrokes, as well as introducing soft tones via ghost strokes or muted chords.
For proper fingerpicking technique, those playing fingers should follow the same rules – ensure all notes are evenly spaced out and evenly struck. As with any classical guitar piece, accurate timing and lightness of touch are key! Just remember: practice makes perfect!
Advanced players should aim to take what they know from basicfinger picking technique and incorporate more intricate ornamentations into their version of “What Child Is This?” Syncopated rhythms using half steps can be used add subtle complexity to certain sections within stanzas or full choruses alike, along with alternate picking patterns or even hybrid picking (pick-and-fingers)! Adding trills is also a great way to make your “What Child Is This?” unique – just try not overdo it so as not detract from the beautiful message inherent in this classic carol.
FAQs About Learning What Child Is This?
Q: What is the meaning behind the song “What Child Is This?”
A: “What Child Is This?” is a popular Christmas carol written by English composer William Chatterton Dix. The lyrics to the carol ask a series of questions about Jesus, such as “Whom angels greet with anthems sweet” and “The King of kings lay thus lowly manger”. It is believed that Dix wrote this song during a time of great personal struggle, which adds poignancy to its theme. The ultimate message in the carol coincides with the Christian celebration of Jesus’ birth – that he came to this world as a savior for mankind and should be adored for his immense sacrifice and love for humankind.
Q: Who wrote “What Child Is This?”
A: William Chatterton Dix, an English writer and composer from Gloucester, wrote this carol in 1865. He published it in his collection called “Poems (1867)”. It quickly became popular among English audiences who eventually made it into one of the most beloved Christmas carols ever written.
Q: How is “What Child Is This?” typically performed?
A: This classic song can be performed as either a solo or group performance regardless of instrumentation. Most popular renditions are traditional choral arrangements that often incorporate rich harmonies and stylized vocal techniques. Instrumental versions will typically focus more on ornamentations and melodic beauty instead of rhythmic complexities. Regardless of arrangement style, it is usually accompanied by acoustic instruments such as piano or guitar instead of electric instruments due to its mellifluous nature.
Top 5 Facts About Playing What Child Is This? on Guitar
1. Playing “What Child Is This?” on guitar requires skill in both fingerstyle and strumming techniques. Players must be able to alternate between chords and single notes, playing melody lines with the right hand while keeping time with a steady strumming pattern. With practice, even the most novice of players can learn to play this beloved song.
2. The author of “What Child Is This?” is unknown; however, the version now popularly used was written by English composer William Chatterton Dix and was first published in 1865 under its original title, “The Manger Throne.” The song has been adapted many times over the centuries since then, but it continues to be played each year during the Christmas season.
3. “What Child Is This?” is usually played in either G major or A minor – depending upon which key best suits the pulse of a particular arrangement. Generally speaking, G major works best when playing “power chords” (root and fifth) while A minor adds a darker quality to the piece when using full chord voicings (containing root, third, fifth and sometimes seventh).
4. To encourage creativity amongst players of this holiday classic, there are tons of variations available for experienced guitarists who are looking for new ways to perform the carol – from simple versions featuring basic open chords through to complex solo guitar improvisations utilizing Jazz-influenced harmonies and phrasing ideas.
5. While playing any popular holiday tune does bring special feelings in people around us – not only those who have ties directly associated with Christmas – hearing purely acoustic renditions have a unique warmth that’s difficult to put into words yet easy to appreciate! Use your acoustic guitar as an instrument capable of expressing hearts’ deep-felt emotions…and let What Child Is This? warm up any room during this festive period!
Conclusion: Master this Classic Christmas Tune Before the Holiday Season!
The holidays are upon us, and what better way to get into the Christmas spirit than to master a classic holiday tune? With just a little practice and dedication, you can add some extra cheer to your Christmas parties or family gatherings by showing off your vocal talents. Here’s how to make “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” an easy favorite!
First, start by learning the melody and lyrics of the song. A simple Internet search will yield numerous sources on which you can build your knowledge. It may take some time before you feel comfortable with the song, but don’t be discouraged if it takes more than one listening session – perfecting melodies takes practice.
Once you have a firm grasp on the right notes and words, time to work on nailing that pitch! To do this properly it helps having a good sense of rhythm and pitch as well as enunciation skills so proper vowels sounds like ees for “we” and ohs for “you”. This could require some vocal warmups such as humming or scales to ensure crispness in delivery. And when singing in front of a crowd keep in mind there is no prize for comparing various high notes! The important thing is how well were able adorers mesmerized by adorable consonants articulation!
Finally there are smiles gained from keeping a melodic consistency throughout all verses; unless otherwise indicated in arrangements, sing the same notes at least until each verse ends. Keeping volume at consistent level while soloing also plays an important role; too many changes in ranges could ruin flow of entire rendition which comes first before emotional outburst that can captivate everyone around listeners!
So if feeling ready why not getting rid of stage fright with making video tutorials or recordings during practice sessions? One huge feedback supplier always lies within family & friends, who could help spot musical errors unnoticeable during rehearsals due to inexperience in particular field by providing valuable advices on technique matter mentioned above plus collaborative ideas regarding beats