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Ukulele Christmas Fingerpicking and Fingerstyle Songs

This is the perfect time to impress your loved ones with your fingerpicking skills!

by Jennifer VanBenschoten

Fa la la la la! It’s never too early or late to start learning some new ukulele Christmas fingerpicking and fingerstyle songs, right? Christmas is the perfect time to start learning some new ukulele fingerstyle songs. The sweet sounds of solo ukulele fingerstyle perfectly match the songs of the holiday season. There’s just something so soulful about Christmas songs played fingerstyle on your ukulele. Check out our list of favorite ukulele Christmas fingerpicking and fingerstyle songs!

What is Fingerpicking and Fingerstyle?

Before we get to the list of great ukulele Christmas fingerpicking and fingerstyle songs you can learn from Uke Like the Pros, let’s talk a little about fingerpicking and fingerstyle. 

Most of us picked up a ukulele and learned how to strum before we did anything else. When you strum your ukulele, you simply run your finger (either your thumb or index finger) across all four ukulele strings to play a chord. Strumming chords on the ukulele is usually the first thing that you do when you’re learning how to play the ukulele because most people consider this to be an easy way to play the ukulele.

Read more: Hawaiian Ukulele Christmas Songs

Fingerpicking or fingerstyle ukulele means that instead of strumming all four strings, you only play a few notes at a time, and not all at the same time. A ukulele fingerstyle or fingerpicking arrangement might mean that instead of playing the whole D minor chord at once, you play the first two notes on the first two strings of your ukulele, then take a pause or a rest, and then play the remaining strings one at a time. There might be what’s called a passing tone in between the notes of the chord in order to make a melody. 

Beginners on the ukulele usually learn how to play chords in first position. When you’re playing in first position, you play the notes of the chords within the first four frets of the fingerboard. But as a friend of mine once said, I paid for that whole ukulele fretboard, so I’m gonna use it! Learning how to play fingerstyle and fingerpicking arrangements of your favorite songs means that because you’ll be playing the melody, you have the chance to start moving up the fretboard and learning different versions of the same basic chords that you already know in first position. 

Ready to dive into some of our favorite ukulele Christmas fingerpicking songs? Read on for my recommendations! 

Ukulele Christmas Fingerpicking and Fingerstyle Songs

Silent Night Ukulele Fingerstyle Tutorial

This famous Christmas carol was written in 1816 by a young Austrian priest after a nighttime walk when he observed a town completely at peace under the deep snows of winter. Europe at that time was recovering from years of violent wars under Napoleon Bonaparte, and the priest wanted to find a way to express the quiet and peace he felt in his heart on such a beautiful winter night so close to Christmas.

If you’re looking for a little bit of a challenge, this is a great place to start. This arrangement of Silent Night for ukulele fingerstyle will give you some solid skills that you can use when learning other ukulele fingerpicking arrangements – and once you learn it, you’ll have a beautiful piece of Christmas music that you can play for family and friends, or just for yourself!

We Three Kings

My favorite memory of this Christmas classic is the first year that I was cast as one of the Wise (Wo)Men in my church Christmas pageant. I was given a beautifully carved little wooden box filled with gold foil-wrapped chocolate coins, and it took every ounce of restraint for me to not dig into those until after the show was over and the chocolate was distributed among the entire cast! 

But seriously, this is a well-loved Christmas song for many people during the holiday season, and this ukulele Christmas fingerstyle song is arranged to make it easy for you to learn it. It’s a wonderful song to play for midnight mass or just caroling with friends.

Blue Christmas

Elvis Presley’s Blue Christmas is another holiday favorite! Dig out your retro vinyl records and your record player, and this song will transport you back in time to new-fangled plastic Christmas trees, sparkly tinsel that you put on the tree one strand at a time, and homemade eggnog on Christmas eve. 

This bluesy tutorial for low-G of Blue Christmas is sure to have you singing along in no time! 

The First Noel

Once you’ve learned a few easy fingerstyle Christmas songs on your ukulele, check out the tutorial for The First Noel. This is a great way to start inching your way up the ukulele fretboard and out of first position fingerpicking songs. Not only is this a beautiful Christmas carol, but it can be played at a slower tempo to make it easier to learn. 

A little bit of interesting history about this Christmas song is that it first appeared in English Christmas carol books around 1823. The tune was adapted from several other unusual folk songs and melodies that were “cut and pasted” into the beloved Christmas song we all know today.

If you like to learn new ukulele songs on YouTube, make sure you check out the Uke Like the Pros YouTube channel! You’ll find video tutorials for all of these ukulele Christmas fingerpicking songs, plus much more! Make sure you subscribe to stay up to date on all the latest video releases and learn something new on the ukulele!

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