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Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas Piano Notes: Tutorial and Free Sheet Music

have yourself a merry little christmas piano

Would you like to learn how to play the notes of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano? You’re in luck, we’ve written a tutorial on this very subject.

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas is a Christmas song that was first performed in 1944, for the musical movie The Missouri Song.

Written and composed by musicians Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane, the song quickly became popular with American soldiers’ troops during World War II.

It was later covered by Frank Sinatra in the late 1950s and, more recently, by Sam Smith.

Since then, this music has attracted an ever-growing audience and is now one of the most famous Christmas songs.

Moreover, it has been the subject of simplified versions on the piano. This is why it is so popular with beginning pianists.

In this article, we propose you to learn how to play the notes of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano. We will first look at the notes to be played with the right hand, then those to be played with the left hand. Each part will be accompanied by a tutorial video showing the beats of each note and the tempo of the song on a virtual piano keyboard.

You will also find the free piano sheet music of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.

At the end of the article, the goal is for you to know how to play this famous Christmas song perfectly on the piano. Let’s start!

Bonus: you can also learn to play this song at your own pace on our piano learning application La Touche Musicale.

Joris, the author of this article, recommends the following resource: Piano tutorials: learn the 10 easiest songs

christmas piano songs learning app

Learn to play the best Christmas piano songs

La Touche Musicale app features over 100 songs especially dedicated to the Christmas category, including Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas. Connect your piano to your device and learn to play them at your own pace while having fun.

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano: finding your way around the keyboard

Before we start learning the notes of Have Yourself a Merry Christmas on the piano, let’s first go over some basics.

Let’s start by identifying the position of the notes on a piano keyboard. Look at the image below:

have yourself a merry little christmas piano notes keyboard
The names of the notes on a piano keyboard.

We can observe on the picture above that the piano keyboard is composed of several parts. Each part consists of 7 white keys, which all have a different note. Once we reach the 8th note, the sequence starts again. This succession of 7 keys is called “octave”.

To find a note more easily on the keyboard, we advise you to use the black keys. Contrary to the white keys, the black keys do not follow each other identically. They work in groups of two and three. To find a note, you must first know where you stand in relation to these groups.

But let’s take a concrete example to better understand. If you are looking for the note F, you must first look for a group of 3 black keys. Once you have found it, you just have to press the white key located just before (on the left) the first key of the group of three quarter notes to find the F.

Before learning Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano, we recommend that you practice finding the notes on the keyboard with ease. This will allow you to play the song much faster.

Free guide: Piano tutorials: learn the 10 easiest songs to play 

Discover our resource dedicated to helping you learn 10 famous and very easy to play piano songs (notes, letters and video tutorials).

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Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas: playing the notes with the right hand

Where to start?

Before playing the notes with the right hand, we will first use what we have seen before to find the first note to play.

Place your finger on the note C on the piano keyboard:

C first note have yourself merry little christmas piano right hand
C is the first note of the right hand in the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano.

The notes of the right hand

Once you have found the C, you will have to play the whole sequence of notes with your right hand.

Press the following notes in succession [Note: When two notes must be played at the same time, we have linked them with the “+” symbol]:

C – E – G – C – G – F – E – D – C – D – C – E – G – C – G – E – G – C – E – D – C – B – A – G – F – E – C# – F – D – C – E – G – C – G – F – E – D – C – D – C – E – G – C – G – E – G – C – E – D – C – B – A – G# – B – C – F+A# – E – E – E – E – D – C – B – C – D – C – B – A – B – C – B – B – C – A – C – B – A – G – A – B – G – A – B – C – D – D – G – C – E – G – C – G – F – E – D – C – D – C – E – G – C – G – E – G – C – E – F – E – D – C – B – D – E – D – E – E – E – F – A – C – E – D – C – B – A – B – E+C.

By playing these notes one after the other, you will easily recognize the melody of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas performed with the right hand.

Play this succession of notes over and over again to learn it by heart and to be as comfortable as possible. Once this is done, you can switch to the left hand.

have yourself a merry little christmas piano right hand
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano: the notes of the right hand.

Video tutorial

To help you respect the time and tempo of the notes to be played with the right hand, you can watch this tutorial video that shows the notes of the song descending on a virtual piano keyboard [Note: you must remain pressed on the key while the note is on it on the virtual piano] :

Video tutorial of the notes to play with the right hand for the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.
banner mobile have yourself a merry little christmas piano

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas: playing the notes with the left hand

Where to start?

As we did for the right hand, we will first identify the first notes of the left hand.

Place your finger on the E and G notes of your piano keyboard:

E G first notes have yourself merry little christmas piano left hand
E and G are the first notes of the left hand in the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.
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The notes of the left hand

Did you find the E and G grades? Perfect!

Now we’ll press all the following notes one after the other to reproduce the whole left hand of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano:

E+G – A+C – D+C – F+G – E+G – A+C – D+C – B – G – F – E+C – A+C – F+A – G+B – G+C – G+A – D+A – F+G – E+G – A+C – D+C – F+G – E+G – A+C – D+C – B – G – F – E+C – A+C – F+A – E+B – E+A – G – C – F+A – F+G# – E+C – D#+C – D+C – F+G – C+E – F#+C – D#+C – E+C – D#+C – D+G – D+F# – A+F – G+E – F+D – E+G – A+C – D+C – F+G – E+G – A+C – D+C – B – G – F – E+C – A+C – D+A – E+G# – A+C – G+A# – E+C – F+C – D+A+C – G+F – C+G.

The left hand is very important as it allows you to accompany the right hand and give depth to the melody and your playing.

As with the right hand, repeat this sequence of notes over and over to master it perfectly.

have yourself a merry little christmas piano left hand
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano: the notes of the left hand.

Video tutorial

Watch the following tutorial video showing you all the left hand notes to play on a virtual piano keyboard:

Video tutorial of the left hand notes for the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.

You can now play this famous Christmas song on the piano with your right and left hands. Bravo !

But can you play both hands at the same time? That’s what we’ll see now.

banner mobile have yourself merry little christmas piano

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano: play the whole song with both hands

Difficulty : the dissociation of the two hands

Hand dissociation is one of the most difficult exercises when starting to play the piano.

Our brains are not used to performing such precise gestures as finger placement with several limbs and all in a synchronous way.

This is why many beginner pianists take a long time to learn this exercise.

But there are some techniques and tricks to master hand dissociation more quickly. This is what we are going to see now in order to play the whole song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.

Methods, tips and techniques

Some teachers and music coaches have developed techniques and tricks to help their students learn to separate their hands on the piano more quickly.

You can start by playing the notes of the song independently with your left and right hands. This way, you will gradually get used to the various sequences and tempo of the music you are practicing to.

This is the method we have chosen to adopt in this tutorial about Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on piano.

Once you know how to play the notes with both hands, you will have to play them together.

To do this, we recommend that you break your song or exercise into short passages. For example, if the music you are practicing is 3 minutes long, focus on the first 10 seconds and no more. Play this sequence with both hands in a loop, starting very slowly and gradually increasing the pace as you feel comfortable. Once this sequence is played at the original tempo of the song, move on to the next one by repeating the same exercise. When this second part is also mastered, play the first two parts in a row.

This technique is very effective. It allows your brain to assimilate the information progressively and thus to learn much faster. Some beginners want to go too fast and try to play too much of the song in one go. This is counterproductive and you risk losing motivation quickly.

Note: At La Touche Musicale, we name this technique the “learning loop”. Noticing its effectiveness on piano learning, we decided to integrate a feature into our online piano learning app that allows you to loop any part of the song and learn it in a few hours.

have yourself a merry little christmas piano both hands
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano: the notes of both hands.

Video tutorial

We made a final tutorial video showing the notes that should be played with both hands at the same time. This will allow you to respect the time of the notes and the rhythm of the song. It will also allow you to know at what precise moment the notes of both hands should be synchronized.

To play at your own pace, we recommend that you pause the video to give yourself time to position your fingers correctly on the piano keyboard.

Note: on La Touche Musicale app, you don’t need to pause the song. The application waits for you until you play the right note.

Video tutorial to play the notes of both hands of the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas on the piano.

Download the free piano sheet music of the song Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas in PDF

You can easily find the score of this famous song on the internet. However, be careful with paying offers because it is a free score belonging to the public domain. It should therefore be free.

In addition to this tutorial, we thought it would be interesting to offer you a free download of the piano sheet music of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas in PDF format so that you can play it from anywhere.

Recommended Resource: Piano Tutorials: Learn the 10 easiest songs to play (notes and video tutorials)

This guide offers you 10 tutorials of famous and easy to learn piano songs.

>> Discover the resource

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