25 Best Christmas Guitar Songs (With Tabs + Video)

Best Christmas Guitar Songs

Christmas is a season of good cheer and merry-making. But what is Christmas without good music, right?

That said, we list some of the best Christmas guitar songs you can play or enjoy with your loved ones during the Yuletide season. Some of these Christmas classics are beginner-friendly too! 

With no further ado, grab your guitars, and let’s strum to the rhythm of these perfect holiday hymns. 

“Jingle Bells” by James Lord Pierpont

Who doesn’t know this timeless Christmas classic? Reverend Pierpont first composed the Jingle Bells song for a Thanksgiving service in the 1850s. It originally bore the title “One Horse Open Sleigh.”

While the merry song wasn’t originally a Christmas song, it’s undeniably one of the most popular songs ever played. In fact, there are numerous renditions of this song by big names like Frank Sinatra and Dolly Parton. 

Sadly, there are no surviving records of the song’s original version. Bing Crosby and the Andrews sisters’ version in 1945 remains one of this classic’s earliest and most popular versions. 

Apart from its popularity and cultural significance, the song made our list as playing this song on acoustic guitar is relatively easy and beginner friendly.

GenreChristmas/Children’s Music
Type of GuitarAcoustic 
TabsJingle Bells Tabs

“Silent Night” by Franz Gruber

Would you believe this mellow Christmas classic is over 200 years old? 

Silent Night was first played during difficult times of war and famine in Austria on Christmas Eve of 1818. Even today, the song remains a gentle reminder that hope and peace exist even amidst the chaos.

This all-time Christmas carol was originally a poem by Josef Mohr, which the talented organist Franz Gruber put to life with his musical setting. 

The song was originally German and was titled Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht. Due to its popularity, the song has been translated into 300 languages over the years.

Silent Night features a calm and peaceful melody, almost like a lullaby. Playing it on acoustic guitar makes it sound even more magical, too.

Type of GuitarAcoustic 
TabsSilent Night Tabs

“White Christmas” by Irving Berlin

Something about Irving Berlin’s White Christmas song takes us back to December’s bright, bustling, snow-filled streets. Russian immigrant and composer Irving Berlin originally wrote this song for a musical film in the 1940s. 

The song never fails to give us a hint of nostalgia as we automatically think about our childhood and opening gifts on a chilly Christmas night. 

By far, world-famous singer Bing Crosby’s White Christmas rendition is the best-selling Christmas song of all time. There are also many guitar renditions to this song, and we’re obsessed with the strong but feel-good melody it makes! 

Type of GuitarElectric
TabsWhite Christmas Tabs

“Deck the Halls” (Traditional)

Christmas wouldn’t be complete without the fancy decorations, towering Christmas trees, and subtle lights. 

Decorating is one way to add meaning to the cheerful celebration, and the upbeat Deck the Halls carol reminds us of the festivity of Christmas time. 

The song brings back happy memories of my carefree childhood and the excitement of opening presents beneath the glistening Christmas tree.  

Made popular by Nat King Cole, the song’s original version features a Welsh melody, a style originating from Wales. 

This traditional music form features songs with repetitive nature. That said, the song’s repetitive and catchy ‘Fa La La’ lines are unforgettable and captivating even to small children.  

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsDeck the Halls Tabs

“O Holy Night” by Adolphe Adam

The lyrics of Oh Holy Night were originally a French poem by Placide Cappeau. Adolphe Adam’s musical talent brought the poem to life, and is now one of the most admired Christmas carols.

The song’s lyrics tell of the magical night of Jesus Christ’s birth and the gift of salvation, the core reason why believers from all across the globe celebrate this occasion. 

Meanwhile, one of the most famous renditions of this song was by Mariah Carey in 1994, part of her fourth studio album, Merry Christmas.

Playing this song on guitar would be perfect for Christmas gatherings by the warm fireplace. Check out the tabs for the acoustic rendition of this song in the table below. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic 
TabsO Holy Night Tabs

“Joy to the World” by Isaac Watts and Lowell Mason

The massive popularity of Joy to the World is due to Trinity Choir’s rendition in 1911, one of this song’s earliest performances.

While this English carol’s message is unrelated to Christmas, it remains one of the most celebrated Christmas songs for its lively tune and distinctive lyrics.

The lines from Psalm 98, which is part of the Writings in the Old Testament, inspired the lyrics of this biblical hymn turned popular Christmas carol.

Contrary to celebrating the birth of the Savior, which is quite common in the lyrics of well-known Christmas songs, the song commemorates Christ’s second coming on earth. 

The song made our list due to its versatility and suitability in different genres like rock and jazz.  

Type of GuitarDistortion 
TabsJoy to the World Tabs

“The First Noel” (Traditional)

The First Noel, which directly translates to The First Christmas, is a traditional English carol of Cornish origin. It’s a Christmas staple among church and children’s choirs too. 

The song’s lyrics tell about the events of Jesus’ birth, which is why it’s one of the most meaningful Christmas carols ever written.

One of the famous renditions of this song is by Whitney Houston, who gave the traditional song an uplifting pop touch. 

Type of GuitarElectric/Acoustic
TabsThe First Noel Tabs

“Away in a Manger” (Traditional)

Another powerful but touching Christmas favorite, Away in a Manger, is a gentle lullaby that tells the story of baby Jesus in the nativity. 

While it’s a Christmas carol, the song speaks to us like a prayer, especially for little children. The song is famous as a cradle song too.

Away in a Manger features a serene melody, and playing this on acoustic guitar is beginner-friendly, too. You’ll only need to remember chords like A, D, and E. 

You can also check out the acoustic tab for Away in a Manger in the table below.  

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsAway in a Manger Tabs

“We Wish You a Merry Christmas” (Traditional)

As Christmas draws near, this lively song is all over the place—you hear it in malls, restaurants, and wherever you go. Hearing this song is a jolly reminder that the most awaited season is right around the corner. 

Additionally, if there’s one Christmas song we know the lyrics by heart, it would be We Wish You a Merry Christmas. Even those not fond of celebrating Christmas can memorize this song too!

The origin of We Wish You a Merry Christmas dates back centuries ago in England. 

Due to its traditional roots, instruments like saxophones and trumpets were used to play the song. Despite that, the song sounds just as good on guitar. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsWe Wish You A Merry Christmas Tabs

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by Johnny Marks

This funky song is an all-time Christmas carol that makes us think of Santa’s peculiar reindeer with a gleaming nose.

The song’s fascinating history dates back to the 1930s, when the Montgomery Ward Department store released a storybook about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer as part of their promotional gimmick. 

The book became a massive hit, with over 2 million copies sold. Later on, the book became an inspiration for a Christmas carol of the same title. 

The Christmas song we all love today is a million record seller, but you wouldn’t believe that the composer once regarded it as “one of the worst songs ever written.” The song’s composer, Johnny Marks, was a World War II captain who died at 75 in 1985. 

However, the composer’s cruel remark doesn’t deny that this song has been a significant part of our holidays, even to this day, where the song remains classic and relevant. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsRudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Tabs

“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane

One of the most loved Christmas songs, the message of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ original version is a mix of sad and hopeful. 

The song was originally for a sad scene in a movie, which may be why it has a melancholic undertone. The song plays during a scene where the older sister has to console her younger sister, who’s conflicted about moving to New York.

The song was composed for the 1944 film Meet Me in St. Louis, starring Judy Garland. 

Nonetheless, the song is a masterpiece and was made even more famous by many renditions like Frank Sinatra’s version in 1947.

Type of GuitarAcoustic/Electric Bass
TabsHave Yourself a Merry Little Christmas Tabs

“Winter Wonderland” by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith

The song reminds us of the beauty of Christmas amid the dreary cold, where the composer describes it as a winter wonderland. The lyrics inspire us to look ahead, move forward, and dream.

On the other hand, the Winter Wonderland song is more than just the dash of magic it brings to everyone who hears it; it has a humbling backstory that most of us aren’t probably wary of.

Originating from Pennsylvania, Felix Bernard and Richard Smith created the song. While penning the song, the latter was battling tuberculosis in a sanitarium and drew inspiration from the beauty of the snow falling at a nearby park. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsWinter Wonderland Tabs

“O Come, All Ye Faithful” (Traditional)

This meaningful Christmas staple is a church favorite, and the song’s history dates back to the 18th century. 

Originally written in Latin with the title Adele Fideles, the song calls for worship and a celebration of life. 

Additionally, the song was made famous by big names like Andrea Bocelli and Nat King Cole.

Type of GuitarAcoustic/Distortion
TabsO Come, All Ye Faithful Tabs

“Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” by Charles Wesley and Felix Mendelssohn

It’s no surprise that the most popular Christmas songs are related to the gospel, and this song by Charles Wesley and Felix Mendelssohn is just one of those catchy but significant hymns that can’t miss the list. 

The song, Hark! The Heralds Angels Sing speaks about celebrating Jesus Christ and the reconciliation between God and his people. 

Given its gospel origin, playing this song on guitar is worth the try. Something about gospel music and guitar accompaniment makes the song even more sentimental.

Type of GuitarOverdriven/Acoustic/Fretless
TabsHark! The Herald Angels Sing Tabs

“Santa Claus is Coming to Town” by John Frederick Coots and Haven Gillespie

Kids and even kids at heart are all anticipating the arrival of the festive season, and Christmas is all about tons of irresistible presents! This song by Coots and Gillespie is all about it.

Just hearing the intro of this song makes me think of candy canes, Christmas presents, and Santa Claus. 

Moreover, the song’s infectious melody and fun lyrics make it unforgettable. 

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your guitar and sing along to this soulful song as you open presents beneath the tree. 

Type of GuitarElectric
TabsSanta Claus is Coming to Town Tabs

“Frosty the Snowman” by Walter “Jack” Rollins and Steve Nelson

As children, making interesting figures with snow is a Christmas tradition. Such merry tunes like Frosty the Snowman take us back to our carefree childhood and the joys of playing in the snow. 

Hearing this 50s classic makes you want to get up, dance, and soak in the Winter sun while making snow angels or throwing snowballs with your friends. 

Just like the song Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, a fictitious story inspired this hitmaker, but this time, of a talking snowman. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsFrosty the Snowman Tabs

“Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne

Dean Martin’s rendition of the song is undeniably the most loved version, and we couldn’t agree more!

This Christmas carol, written by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne, is a touching song about spending time with a loved one amidst the frightful, snowy weather. 

There’s a fascinating history to the composition of this song, too. 

Despite the snowy Christmas vibe the song makes us feel, did you know that the composers wrote it amid a heat wave in 1945?

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsLet It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Tabs

“Blue Christmas” by Billy Hayes and Jay W. Johnson

Blue Christmas is a song about heartbreak and coping with loneliness during a festive season.

Ernest Tubb made the country version of this song famous, which later gave the king of rock ‘n’ roll, Elvis Presley, inspiration to record his rendition. Elvis’ Blue Christmas eventually climbed the UK charts in 1964.

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsBlue Christmas Tabs

“Feliz Navidad” by José Feliciano

Another Christmas classic that we all know by heart, Feliz Navidad’s catchy tune and easy-to-remember lyrics, was given life by the talented Puerto Rican singer José Feliciano. 

The all-time favorite classic is a worldwide hit over 50 years after its release. At the same time, the song holds the crown as one of the best-performing songs on the Billboard Holiday 100 Chart.

While the meaning behind the bilingual lyrics is as simple as wishing someone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, the hitmaker remains a symbol of holiday cheer and festivity. 

For me, it’s the groovy vibe and simplicity of the song that made it so significant. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsFeliz Navidad Tabs

“Silver Bells” by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans

Another holiday hit made famous by Bing Crosby and Carol Richards in the 1950s, Livingston and Evans’ Silver Bells brings us to the busy Christmas streets, with people bustling around to shop for the holidays. 

The song gives us a dreamy Christmas vibe, with children’s laughter filling the crisp air, carol singers performing sweet choruses by the doors, and colorful lights reflecting on every spectator’s eyes.

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsSilver Bells Tabs

“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” by Johnny Marks

This song has over 400 renditions, and that’s not surprising, given how much everybody would love to dance and go wild upon hearing this zestful song!

Written by American songwriter Johnny Marks, the mastermind behind the hit song Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, this rock and roll Christmas hit was given life by renowned country and rockabilly singer Brenda Lee in 1958. 

In addition to the dancey vibe of the song, did you know that the studio recording was just as fun? 

In an interview with Chicago Tribune in 2006, Brenda revealed that producer Owen Bradey made a creative setup of a Christmas tree and set the studio blasting with air conditioning to set the Christmas mood during the song’s recording session. 

With its rock nature, playing the song with an electric guitar is a breathtaking experience you don’t want to miss!

Type of GuitarElectric/Fretless Bass
TabsRockin’ Around the Christmas Tree Tabs

“Little Drummer Boy” by Katherine Kennicott Davis

With its remarkable “pa-rum pum pum pum” vocable, the song features a solemn mood which complements the narrative that the song attempts to convey. 

It tells the story from the perspective of a poor drummer boy marching to where the baby Jesus is. The boy sings about how he had no gifts to offer except for the music from his drums. 

So with utmost dedication, he plays it in the baby’s presence with all his heart. 

GenreHoliday/Christmas Pop
Type of GuitarAcoustic/Electric Bass
TabsLittle Drummer Boy Tabs

“Sleigh Ride” by Leroy Anderson and Mitchell Parish

A masterpiece from America’s king of light concert music, Leroy Anderson, Sleigh Ride is an ageless carol that Leroy brought to life with lyricist Mitchell Parish. 

The feel-good song had many renditions, but with its upbeat melody it was made even more cheerful by the soft chiming bell sounds, The Ronettes’ rendition of Sleigh Ride is the version I’ll never tire of listening to.

While this iconic song had many versions, its roots are of orchestral origin. Interestingly, the original version didn’t have any lyrics at all!

Type of GuitarAcoustic/Electric/Electric Bass
TabsSleigh Ride Tabs

“I’ll Be Home for Christmas” by Kim Gannon and Walter Kent

The fact that Bing Crosby first sang this song while in the middle of the Second World War is one factor why this song holds so much sentiment and melancholy.

I’ll Be Home for Christmas is a gentle but somber song about longing to come home to a loved one for Christmas. 

To me, the bittersweet mood that the song conveys stirs up a mix of emotions in listeners, and playing it on guitar will bring value to the essence and feelings depicted in the hymn. 

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsI’ll Be Home for Christmas Tabs

“It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” by Meredith Willson

This dreamy song reminds us that Thanksgiving is finally over, and the Christmas spirit slowly seeps into the surroundings. I can’t help but think of sweaters, hot chocolate, and fireplaces. 

I remember hearing a guitar rendition of this song while randomly scrolling through some reels a few months back, and I can’t ever forget how warm and nostalgic it made me feel. 

Imagine sharing the song with some friends or family on Christmas Eve. You should try playing this song on guitar, for with every strum, you can feel the Christmas atmosphere and relinquish sweet memories.

Type of GuitarAcoustic
TabsIt’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas Tabs

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