When you are a young musician, there is this rush to try and play your first songs that people will know. It is more of a way of showing how you are doing well more than anything else. That’s fine; it is quite natural to want to do that.
The question is what to actually try to learn to play. The trumpet is notoriously difficult when you first start. I know; my son rendered us all tone-deaf for the first few months.
- It’s A Small World
- The Mickey Mouse March
- A Spoonful Of Sugar
- When You Wish Upon A Star
- Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Classical Pieces
- Ode To Joy – Ludwig Van Beethoven
- Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
- Love Me Tender – Elvis Presley
- My Heart Will Go On – Celine Dion
- Happy Birthday
- What A Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong
- All You Need is Love – The Beatles
- When the Saints Go Marching In – Louis Armstrong (and just about everyone else)
- Summertime – Maynard Ferguson, Chet Baker
- Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Resources
- Interested in Playing the Trumpet?
- Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Final Thoughts
Young musicians will find it more fun to learn songs they know that they can play. That is what this guide is all about – fun trumpet songs to play on your trumpet.
The age group of the student is something to consider because not all beginners are young people. Some take up instruments later in life. Credit to them. So, we have to decide on trumpet songs that everyone will enjoy. Let’s start with Walt Disney.
It’s A Small World
This song is not from a Disney film, but everyone still knows it. It was written and created for the 1964 World’s Fair in New York and then went to Disneyland in California. Now, it is a resident addition to all the Disney theme parks.
“It’s A Small World” was written by Robert and Richard Sherman initially following the Cuban Missile crisis in 1962. It was to be included on a theme park ride called “Children of the World.”
Disney Was Impressed
Disney was so impressed with its theme of international unity that he changed the name of his theme park ride to “It’s a Small World.”
A nice simple song performed in a ‘round’ that is a great first song for a beginner trumpet player.
The Mickey Mouse March
Another song with a well-known theme. It was originally written as the beginning introductory music to The Mickey Mouse television show. This aired in the US from 1955 to 1959. It is particularly suitable for a young player as it encompasses some simple rhythms and scales.
A Spoonful Of Sugar
The Sherman brothers again with this favorite from Mary Poppins in 1964. A little bit harder than some we have looked at, which may begin to stretch the beginner. It will involve some leaps around the scales and some good practice in playing different note rhythms.
When You Wish Upon A Star
This could well be the most famous of all the Disney tunes. A timeless offering, it was originally sung by Jiminy Cricket in the 1940 version of “Pinocchio.” Then it was used over the credits at the beginning and end.
It has since become almost a theme for Disney and used in the marketing for many of their later films. For a young trumpet player, it is a good choice.
Practice Good Technique
Not only well-known and loved, but it also contains some good opportunities to practice playing smooth patterns. You also get to practice some note-holding and vibrato techniques.
Let’s complete our look at easy trumpet songs for beginners from Disney with this. A lighthearted romp, it was first included in the 1937 animation “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.”
The music by Frank Churchill and the lyrics by Larry Morey create a joyful, happy feeling now, but that was not the meaning of “Heigh-Ho” at the time.
Here Come The Dwarfs
In the film, it was the first appearance of the seven dwarfs as they march off to work in the diamond and ruby mine. It has since been included in other Disney productions. Donald Duck sings it in the “Riveter” and the “Volunteer Worker.” It is also used in the Disney theme parks.
Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Classical Pieces
There we are, some great songs that are a lot of fun to learn from Walt Disney Productions. But there are plenty of others we can look at. But before we come a little bit more up to date, let’s hook up the DeLorean and go back a bit in time.
Ode To Joy – Ludwig Van Beethoven
One of the most famous pieces by Beethoven, it is best known as being part of the final movement of his Ninth Symphony. That was completed in 1824 when he was stone deaf.
Part of Beethoven’s text for this piece was based on a poem by Friedrich Schiller written in 1785. Beethoven never considered himself a “writer of songs” and avoided lyrics where he could.
Loved and Admired
It is a wonderful piece played on any instrument. And so it is for trumpet. A piece of music that is loved wherever there is music. But importantly, it is a piece that allows a beginner to learn to play with some competence.
Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
It is thought that Mozart wrote the basis of this piece when he was a young child for his older sister Nannerl. With the greatest regard to some of his brilliant work, this might still be the most recognizable piece of his music to some people.
A simple tune and easy to play, it is an excellent trumpet practice song for going up and down the notes in the scales. It also requires good breathing control to ensure the notes are extended where necessary.
Back To The Present
A little exposure to the greatest composers never hurt anyone. But let’s come up to date a little more. The same format applies. We are looking for songs that the new musician will know and that offer good practice to help with their development.
Love Me Tender – Elvis Presley
It is the late 50s, and a young man arrived that made a few onlookers “all shook up.” This was a huge song for him and was the title of his first movie. It is an interesting song in that it is adapted from a well-known song from the American Civil War titled “Aura Lee.”
From a musical point of view, it is quite an easy tune to play. Being a ballad, the tempo is slow, and all the notes are within one octave. A song everyone will know and one that offers good practice.
My Heart Will Go On – Celine Dion
Canadian Celine Dion has always been a very good singer. But when she sang this from the film “Titanic,” it secured her place in modern music history. It is a song by James Horner and William Jennings.
For the young musician, it offers some good experience. There are plenty of opportunities to practice and develop essential techniques. And a song at this tempo helps to instill the correct breathing patterns.
And to finish, how about some well-known trumpet songs that are easy to play and will make you popular at family gatherings.
A song that every beginner musician should learn. If you ask most people who wrote the song, it is likely they may not know. It sounds like it could come from the Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star era, but it is much later.
It is credited to Patty and Mildred Hill, two teachers who were sisters from Kentucky. They wrote it for their school children in the 1890s. A simple little song that is a great tune for a beginner to master and easy to make sound very good.
What A Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong
If you are going to learn popular songs on the trumpet, you might as well choose a tune from one of the greats.
Louis Armstrong is a member of a small group of jazz trumpet players like Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillespie, who are at the top of the game. Armstrong did deviate away from his jazz roots at tines with singles releases like “Hello Dolly” and this particular song.
A nice well-known tune for a trumpet player to learn. Plenty of feeling and emotion can be input, as well as the room to develop your style of interpreting it.
All You Need is Love – The Beatles
I have included this for two reasons. Firstly, because it is a nice simple tune to play that everybody knows, and secondly because of the introduction. That is a play on the “Marseillaise,” the French National Anthem.
I think we can forgive Mr. Lennon that one, as it does add to the song and is strictly in context with the message. It is also a continuation of a theme that John began to express when he wrote “The Word” from the Rubber Soul album.
A Musical Slogan
John was fascinated by how people can be affected by slogans, and this is his effort to do that. I think he did okay. One of his particular favorites was “We Shall Overcome,” which Pete Seeger was instrumental in bringing to public awareness.
Joan Baez sang it at a concert in London and caused a stir. It became an anthem of the Civil Rights Movement, which is one reason in certain quarters it was scorned.
John wrote “All You Need Is Love” with those thoughts and feelings in mind. Easy to learn and again a song that you can add your style to.
When the Saints Go Marching In – Louis Armstrong (and just about everyone else)
This is an evergreen if ever there was one. It originated as a Christian hymn but became a Black Spiritual synonymous with the experiences of the African American Slave trade.
It was recorded by Louis Armstrong and his orchestra in 1938. A song that has been played just about everywhere. Including a guy with a trombone for the whole of his run in the London marathon. A great beginner’s song that will get everybody singing along.
Summertime – Maynard Ferguson, Chet Baker
To close this look at trumpet songs to play if you are a beginner is this one. It is a song that some younger players may not be familiar with, and you will need to be a little brave to try this one. But there is nothing wrong with trying to stretch yourself a bit.
From the 1935 opera “Porgy and Bess” by George Gershwin, it is a masterpiece. It is not that it is played at a fast tempo as we know. It is more about “how” you play it. Meaning, it is a song where you need to learn how to “feel” it and then translate that emotion into your technique.
On The Trumpet
It has been recorded by several people and is often linked to some great singers like Cleo Laine. However, some jazz trumpeters have turned their skills to it, Maynard Ferguson and Chet Baker being two.
They are worth listening to as you can hear how they interpret this song specifically for the trumpet. You can learn a lot just by listening.
Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Resources
Here are some links to some materials that may be useful. Some of the songs from Disney for trumpet we looked at can be found in The Big Book of Disney Songs: Trumpet. And for some more modern songs, there is Easy Pop Melodies: for Trumpet. If you are thinking of learning to play or need a little help, a good option is How to Play the Trumpet.
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Interested in Playing the Trumpet?
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Fun Trumpet Songs To Play On Your Trumpet – Final Thoughts
The trumpet is a great instrument. It can be powerful and subtle, or it can be driving and peaceful. And it can be exciting and melancholy. Yes, it takes some mastering, but it will be well worth it.
Until next time, let your music play.