Welcome To The Christmas Trumpet Song Challenge


  • Master the rhythm – perfect rhythm, as slow as it needs to be
  • Master the notes – repetition practice
  • Master the phrasing – Master the phrasing and artistry – make it your own!

It’s Christmas season, and what’s Christmas without some trumpet music?!

The Christmas Trumpet Song Challenge is simply an opportunity for you to learn and perform a Christmas carol. Especially for beginning trumpet players, The Challenge provides support along the way in the form of…

  •  sheet music
  • performance tips emailed to you
  • a series of live tutorials
  • an online ‘performance spotlight’!

*Note – you’ll receive email updates along the way, but since much of The Challenge will be presented on Facebook, please be sure to ‘Like’ eTrumpet Lessons on Facebook. (click the following button)

The goal is to perform your song anytime up to Christmas day!


Steps to ‘The Challenge’

There are 3 very simple steps to the challenge:

  1. Select a song below and download your sheet music (or choose your own!).
  2. Practice!
    • Notes and Rhythm
    • Musical Expression
    • Join the live presentations (or catch the replays) for a series of tips on each song.
  3. Perform your song on or before Christmas Day

Simple enough? I’ll give you support and guidance along the way, so stay tuned to your email box and Facebook. But for now…
Let’s get started!


Step 1: Song Selection

It’s Here are two popular Christmas Carols. They’re both in the same range – if you can play a C scale you’ll be just fine.

O Come All Ye Faithful

Joy To The World

  •   O Come All Ye Faithful
    (right click to download) – Range all falls within 1 octave – C to C. Sheet music includes mostly half notes and quarter notes.
  •   Joy To The World
    (right click to download)
    Two versions in one! One version is a little easier to read, the other is the traditional melody you know and includes dotted 8th and 16th notes.


Over the Challenge period I’ll give you some support and ideas for performing these songs. I also suggest visiting your favorite music source (YouTube, Spotify, Pandora…) and listen to 2-3 different artists performing your selected song.

Step 2: Practice

After selecting your song (feel free to choose your own instead of either of the above) start practicing. In general, the following order will be helpful:

  • Master the rhythm – perfect rhythm, as slow as it needs to be
  • Master the notes – repetition practice
  • Master the phrasing – Master the phrasing and artistry – make it your own!

I’ll be broadcasting tips for each of the above elements live on YouTube and Facebook, and posting archives of those videos here. Watch your email for announcements!

Step 3: Perform On Or Before Christmas

This is the fun part! You performance may be:

  • public, in the real world
  • a ‘virtual’ performance on YouTube
  • something private for family or friends
  • just for the art on your walls or the elf on the shelf in your home

You get the idea. Just get the song to the best of your ability, and then you’re in the spotlight! I’ll invite people to share their performance on December 23 with the eTrumpet Lessons community. Details on that will be released later.

Additional details will be added below as The Challenge  progresses, but for now, download your music and start practicing!

The two songs offered above have pretty basic rhythms. I encourage you get a little creative and experiment with varying the tempo, the rhythms, and notes, and see what might sound interesting. I must emphasize, however, that you need to be able to play it exactly as written (i.e., ‘straight’, ‘square’) before playing variations.

In the live presentation I reviewed the rhythms of each of the songs. Most rhythms are not tricky and include mostly half notes and quarter notes. A common error that many beginning and developing players make is to not give the dotted notes an exact value. Recall that a dot added to a note makes that note 1-1/2 times longer. So a dotted half note gets three beats, and a dotted quarter note gets 1-1/2 beats (equivalent to three 8th notes).

Below is the recording of the live presentation on Facebook. I admit with apologies that I’m a novice with live broadcasts. I don’t do this often enough to simultaneously manage multiple applications that feed into the live stream, monitor and engage with comments, and deliver a well-polished, fluid presentation. BUT… I’ll get better with practice (sound like a lesson you’re familiar with?). So fast-forward to the part in the video that covers the song you’re working on, see if you can pick up something you can use, and practice getting your melody down perfectly.


Now try using changes in dynamics (loudness/softness) to add some feeling to your song. Take it beyond just playing the right notes!

Want to try your song with accompaniment? Try one of the following play-along tracks!



Final Performances!

Details to come…