I AM dreaming of a white Christmas this year. There's not a speck of snow on the ground. In case you're also dreaming of a white Christmas, here it is: the most popular single song of all time, according to the Guinness Book of World Records. It was listed as such in the very first edition of Guiness, and again each year for the last fifty years.
The tablature is simplicity itself. I only included the melody line, except for the final C chord. For those who are not familiar with the upper end of the fret board, I have included notations above each staff, in lightface italics, showing which finger of the left hand to use for each note. The fingers are numbered thus:
1 = index
2 = middle
3 = ring
4 - pinkie
This is standard notation for classical guitar (or lead). In general, you will be playing in "seventh position", so all the notes in the seventh fret will be fretted with the index finger, all the notes in the eighth fret will be fretted with the middle finger, etc. The only changes are near the end.
In the next-to-last line, right after the word, "write," the left hand changes to fifth position. If you like you can barre the fifth fret, but you may find it easier to play the third string normally, then just sort of smash the side of your finger down on the second string and first string, as needed. Do the same with the third finger at the eighth fret. Stay in fifth position until it's time to play the last three notes of the next-to-last measure on the open second string, then change to first position for the C chord. With a bit of practice, it will seem quite natural to you.
I hope to do a full guitar arrangement in 2012, and post it before next Christmas, so you will have time to practice. But it sounds pretty good this way, and even better on an acoustic guitar, with lots of vibrato.
Cool stuff about the song:
Irving Berlin wrote over 1500 songs in his long lifetime (he died in his sleep at 101, in the 1980s.) Legend has it that he stayed up all night writing White Christmas, then called up a friend the next day and said, "I've just written the best song I ever wrote-- maybe the best song anybody ever wrote!" If so, many famous song writers, including George Gershwin and Aaron Copeland, would agree. So would millions of fans. Recordings of White Christmas have sold over a hundred million copies, more than any other song in history, and it has reached #1 on the Hit Parade chart of best-selling records three separate times-- the only song ever to do so.
Not bad, for an American Christmas carol written by a Jewish immigrant from Russia!
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