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Joy to the World: Mastering Christmas Carols on the Piano and Keyboard

October 17, 2011 by  

Check out our complete series on mastering Christmas Carols on Piano and Keyboard.

Click on any of the music scores to view/print higher resolution versions

View a range of Christmas Carols Music Books at Amazon.

A popular carol in our series on mastering Christmas Carols on Piano and Keyboard is “Joy to the World”.

Joy to the World: Introduction

Here, Joy to the World is written and played in the key of C Major, and has a 4/4 time signature.

C major makes the higher notes more comfortable to sing, but you could transpose up (or indeed down) if needed.

Joy to the World: Main Melody

The melody notes you need to play are:

C B A | G – F | E D | C – G | A – A | B – B | C | ^C C |
C B A G | G F E C | C B A G | G F E E |
E E E E F | G – - F E | D D D D E | F – - E D | C C – A |
G F E F | E – D – | C – - – |

Here’s the complete melody written out:

Joy to the World melody score

(Download this as a PDF file)

And here’s what it sounds like:

Listen

Joy to the World: Fingering

The first four bars contain a descending C major scale, so play this as you would a normal scale, starting on the fifth (little) finger, running to the thumb (on F) and then bridging over with your middle (third) finger to play the E, ending up on the thumb again on C.

Stretch your index finger up to the next note – G – if you can as this makes the next run easy to play. Play the descending runs of notes with your fingers in sequence, arching over with your index finger where necessary.

Joy to the World: Single Note Bass Line

Below is a simple bass line for the carol using just one note at a time. Most of the bass notes are whole notes (semibreves) with one bar of half notes (minims). You only play notes C, F and G.

Here’s the printed music:

Joy to the World simple bassline score

(Download this as a PDF file)

And here’s what it sounds like:

Continued below...

Listen

Joy to the World: More elaborate bass line

This bass line is a little more elaborate and follows the melody rhythmically, often reflecting the melody in some way.

Here’s the printed music:

Joy to the World enhanced bassline score

(Download this as a PDF file)

And here’s what it sounds like:

Listen

Joy to the World: Adding harmony and fullness with chords

In the final version of Joy to the World, I’ve added two- and three-note chords to the right hand, always with the melody note as the highest note. The bass line has also been slightly altered to fit with the harmonies.

Here’s the printed music.

Joy to the World chords score

(Download this as a PDF file)

And here’s what it sounds like:

Listen

Joy to the World: Lyrics

Joy to the World , the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

We hope you found this guide useful. Feel free to leave comments below if you have any questions or suggestions.

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