ABC Song – Chords, Tabs and Sheet Music

alphabet song guitar chords

The Alphabet Song, also called ABC, is a popular song used in kindergartens to teach the alphabet to pre-school children. Learning the alphabet by singing makes it much easier because it has a very catchy melody. The ABC song has been translated into many different languages. In this free lesson we will learn about the origin and history of the song and how to play it actually on the guitar. There are different ways to play it and we will start with a beginner version where you just need one string of your guitar! But we will also show you how to play The Alphabet Song with easy basic chords and provide you some free PDF downloads like the sheet music for your practicing or lessons.

History and Origin of the Alphabet Song

The melody originally comes from the French nursery rhyme Ah! Vous dirai-je, maman, which has been composed around 1740. The melody has been used then for Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, later as well for Baa, Baa, Black Sheep and finally for the Alphabet Song too. But it’s not known who has set the melody to the alphabet. The ABC Song gained a lot of popularity quite quickly and has been translated into many different languages.

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Easy Song Sheets designed for Kids
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easy guitar songs for kids
Make Playing Guitar more Fun!
Easy Song Sheets designed for Kids
easy guitar songs for kids

Tabs for the ABC Song

Every song can be played in different ways from very easy to pretty advanced fingerstyle arrangements. Let’s focus on the easy arrangement and then let’s discover different ways of playing it. We are going to learn both, how to play it by fingerpicking the strings and by strumming with chords. You can decide which one you like or prefer more and learn your favorite version. However, all of the versions are worth trying and especially guitar teachers can start with the easiest one for their lessons and continue to the more advanced ones.

1. Level: Playing only on One Guitar String

guitar playing on 1 string

Let’s start with the fingerpicking version first. Did you know that we could actually nearly any song on just one string? So, let’s play Alphabet Song just with one string! We find all the needed music notes on one guitar string. This is especially a very good exercise for beginners since they have to focus only on picking one string and moving only one finger of the left hand up and down on this string. Even if it’s your first day playing the guitar, you will see that this arrangement is possible to play! Push down the string with your index or middle finger of your left hand. Pluck the strings with the thumb of your right hand.

Here are the tabs for easy version of the ABC Song on one string:

You find below a recording how it should sound like. You can play along and if it’s too fast then just reduce the speed.

And you can play the same pattern on any other string as well. Try it on the 2nd, 3rd or any other string. It’s a good exercise and you see how you easily get a lower version of the ABC Song.

2. Level: Playing on several Guitar Strings

guitar 3 strings

Playing the Alphabet Song on just one string is a pretty good start but actually you can find the same melody across different strings too. And it’s much more common and efficient to use the other strings on your guitar as well so that you don’t have to move your hand along the whole neck. Of course, you now have to use several fingers and pluck different strings, but this is a very good exercise!

Here are the tabs for playing the song with several strings:

ABC Song Tabs Guitar

And here again, you can listen to the recording to check your playing and see how it should sound like.

Chords for the ABC Song

Fingerpicking is a good exercise on the guitar and it’s also very beginner-friendly way to get familiar with the melody of a song. But if you want to sing and play simultaneously the song then playing it with chords is a must. Same again, there are many different ways to play this song by chords but we want to start with an easy version. We are going to play this song in a key of C.

The chords that you need for the Alphabet Song are the basic chords C, F and G.

Here are the chord diagrams for the required chords:

C Chord Guitar
F Chord Guitar
G Chord Guitar
How to read Guitar Chords

Guitar Chords are illustrated in guitar chords diagram. They are a simplified illustration of the guitar neck and it tells you where to put which finger on which string. Learn more about how to read guitar chords!

If you already master the chords and you can easily change between them then you are good to go for playing the song by chords. Otherwise, practice first the chords and try to play the sequence C-F-G with simple down strums.

As a beginner we start playing it slowly. So, we do a down strum on every chord strum. This gives us enough time for changing between chords without worrying too much about strumming. Also, singing is much easier in the beginning if you just do one down strum on every chord change. Once you master it, you can apply a simple strumming pattern.

DA – B – C – GD – E – F – DG
GH – I –D J – K – AL – M – N – O – DP
Q – R – GS – DT – U – AV – W
GX – DY and AZ
DNow I know my GABDC’s
GNext time wDon’t you sAing with Dme?

Sheet Music with Notes for the ABC Song

All the information about a music piece lies in the sheet music. It indicates the pitches, rhythms and chords of a song. However, sheet music is not very beginner-friendly for young students because it requires some knowledge and learning in order to read it. That’s why guitar tabs or lyrics with chords are used for kids and also for all other beginners. But, it’s worth learning reading sheet music and if you know how to read them, then playing the Alphabet Song with the music notes is your way to go!

How to read Guitar Sheet Music

Guitar Chords are illustrated in guitar chords diagram. They are a simplified illustration of the guitar neck and it tells you where to put which finger on which string. Learn more about how to read guitar chords!

Here are the music notes for the ABC Song:

Alphabet Song Sheet Music

Download Free PDFs for the ABC Song

You can download the basic chord sheet, tabs and sheet music for the Alphabet Song for free. Feel free to print them out and to use them during your lessons or while practicing.

ABC Song - Guitar Free PDF Downloads

Interested in instruments other than the piano? You can also find a free lesson on how to play the Alphabet Song on the piano.

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