15 Easy Violin Songs To Learn For Beginners

Written by Izaak Walton
Last updated

Are you or your child learning the violin? Looking for a list of easy violin songs to learn and work through? There are a number of great violin books for beginners that you can buy to work through exercises and techniques but nothing beats practicing some actual violin pieces. It’s way more fun and sounds a lot better than endless scales up and down.

In this post, we’ve put together a list of easy violin solos that are great for beginners to learn and will help you improve your violin playing!

 1. Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

“Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” is a simple song that is taught to children at a young age and makes a great first piece to learn on the violin.

The lyrics of the song originated from a poem that was written by Jane Taylor, an English poet. The original poem, which was named “The Star”, was published in 1806 in a nursery book that was called Rhymes for the Nursery.

The sheet music for “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” is available from many different sources on the internet, however, there are several variations in different keys so we’d recommend learning it in more than one key once you’ve learned it in one.

2. Frère Jacques

“Frère Jacques” is another popular song that is commonly used as a nursery rhyme to soothe babies. “Frère Jacques” was published in the late 1700s, but much of the nursery rhyme’s history is unknown.

“Frère Jacques” is also commonly performed as a round (also known as a canon), where multiple parts enter in succession and are performed until an end is determined.

“Frère Jacques” will be a simple song for you to learn as a beginner as the notes of the song are on the D-string and the A-string. 

The round style of “Frère Jacques” will allow you to perform it seamlessly for as long as you would like and you can also perform the song with friends on other instruments or singing allowing you to practice how to play rounds with groups.

3. Amazing Grace

Next on our list of easy violin pieces, we have “Amazing Grace” which is a very popular hymnal that has been covered in many different renditions.

Originally written as a poem by John Newton in 1772, the music for “Amazing Grace” was published in 1779, and today there are many arrangements that are available for violinists to learn, and versions that include parts for accompaniment.

It’s typically a slow-paced piece of music that will introduce you to several new concepts as a beginner violinist like downbeats and lots of different types of musical notes“.

And as it’s performed solely on the A and D-strings, it makes it great for new violin students.

4. Schubert’s Ave Maria

Titled “Ellens dritter Gesang” by Franz Schubert, the song that is commonly referred to as “Ave Maria” was written in 1825 as a part of a larger seven-song body of works. “

There are several arrangements of “Ave Maria” that were written to suit musicians of different skill levels but it’s often arranged very simply making it a great song for beginner violinists to learn.

“Ave Maria” is a slow-paced piece that you can practice many elements of playing the violin with such as bow control and will allow you to practice a left-hand technique that is known as vibrato as well as playing on the A and E-string of the violin.

5. Happy Birthday to You

As a musician, you’re going to be called upon at various occasions to play certain songs and so learning “Happy Birthday to You” is a song that is essential to have in your repertoire.

In 1998, the Guinness Book of World Records actually acknowledged “Happy Birthday to You” as the most recognizable song in the English language.

You can play “Happy Birthday to You” at whatever tempo is comfortable for you as there are several versions of the song that are available with different rhythms and different parts.

If you would like to play the song with friends, there are also accompaniment parts that are available so you can play it as a duet.

6. When The Saints Go Marching In

“When the Saints Go Marching In” is another popular Christian hymn that was famously performed and recorded by Louis Armstrong and his jazz ensemble in 1938.

The song features a simple melody and lyrics that are sung in repetition and, like a number of the other songs on this list, it can be played in a variety of tempos, making it a great piece for violinists who are beginners to learn.

You will enjoy playing “When the Saints Go Marching in” because of its upbeat characteristics, but, if you find that the tempo is too fast, you can play the song slower while still enjoying its joyful demeanor.

7. City of Stars – La La Land

“City of Stars” is a popular song from the movie La La Land, which was composed by Justin Hurwitz and the lyrics of the song were written by both Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.

It’s a great one for student violinists to learn as it features notes on three strings; the D, A, and E-String plus, the tempo is slow and passionate, allowing you to practice bringing emotion out of your violin. 

It’s also a great one to be able to practice your memorization skills with due to its simple nature and memorable melody.

8. La Vie en Rose

“La Vie en Rose” is a popular French song that was written in 1945 by Édith Piaf and Spanish composer Louiguy.

Translated to “Life in Pink”, it’s been covered by many musical artists and has numerous versions that made appearances on the Billboard charts plus it has multiple arrangments that are available for beginner violinists to learn.

You will enjoy learning “La Vie en Rose” because it is not like many of the simple songs that are available for beginners to play.

“It’s usually performed at a tempo that is not too fast and will allow you to again, explore the emotional side of your violin as well as bow slurring techniques, eighth notes, and many other techniques with the song.

9. Somewhere Over the Rainbow

“Somewhere over the Rainbow” is a ballad that was composed by Harold Arlen and written by Yip Harburg for the famous movie The Wizard of Oz.

Upon being released in 1939, The Wizard of Oz experienced massive success along with its main song, “Somewhere over the Rainbow” which was later famously covered by famous ukulele player Israel Kamakawiwoʻole before his passing and released again on a full album four years after his death.

“Somewhere over the Rainbow” features simple patterns and a slow pace, which makes it a great piece for you to learn as a beginner.

The song has notes on the G, D, and A-string, allowing you to become more familiar with the three strings and learning how to switch effortlessly between the strings of your violin.

10. Oh! Susanna

“Oh! Susanna” is an American folk song that was written by Stephen Foster and published in 1848. The song was first performed in 1847 by a quintet in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania before it was published.

“Oh! Susanna” is a joyous and upbeat song with many sixteenth notes and eighth notes however as a beginner you’ll probably want to slow the song’s tempo down and speed up as you get more comfortable with the notes.

The notes of “Oh! Susanna” is primarily on the G, and the D-string, but the open A-string is used as well. Alternatively, if you would like to practice playing notes with your pinky, you can play the A-notes on your violin’s D-string with your pinky.

11. The Godfather Theme

One of the most iconic pieces of all time that was. written for the violin, the theme song of The Godfather movie is recognized by many and will be a great song for you to add to your repertoire as a beginner.

The song features notes on the G, D, and A-string of the violin as well as a mix of eighth notes, half notes, and dotted-half notes in the song. 

12. Vivaldi – Spring

“Spring” is one of the four well-known concerti from Antonio Vivaldi’s ‘The Four Seasons and is a popular concerto due to its upbeat nature and joyful characteristics written to emulate the happy and hopeful season of spring

“Spring” is a well-respected piece that you will be able to add to your professional repertoire and as you study it you’ll learn about downbeats, variations between short and long bow strokes, sixteenth notes, dotted-eighth notes, and many more elements.

This is a piece that will send you well on your way towards becoming an advanced violinist.

13. Greensleeves / What Child is This

“Greensleeves” is an English folk song that was written around the late sixteenth century with the exact origins unknown, but the song is alternatively known as “What Child is This?”.

You will learn many advanced rhythms and bow techniques when you learn “Greensleeves” so it’s one to work towards.

It’s also commonly performed with an accompaniment, and there are many accompaniment parts that are available for a variety of instruments.

14. William Tell Overture

The “William Tell Overture” is a piece that was written by Gioachino Rossini and is the overture from a four-part opera that was made popular in modern culture by The Lone Ranger, where it was used as the show’s theme song.

Due to its appearance in The Lone Ranger and its other media appearances, “William Tell Overture” is commonly associated with fast-paced action and horseback riding, specifically.

The popular melody of “William Tell Overture” is a great piece of music for you to learn as a beginner violinist because it features very fast eighth notes, quarter notes, dotted quarter notes, and slurred notes, providing you with exposure to several advanced violin concepts.

The violin part for William Tell Overture’s well-known melody also has heavy usage of the open D-string, which you can use to practice your right-hand bow techniques while not needing to focus on your left hand.

15. Hedwig’s Theme from Harry Potter

Formally known as “Hedwig’s Theme”, the theme song of the Harry Potter series is loved and recognized by many.

Written by the renowned film composer John Williams, “Hedwig’s Theme” was written in 2001 as a leitmotif for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone but it quickly became a staple part of the Harry Potter franchise, making subtle appearances in every movie.

“Hedwig’s Theme” has a moderate tempo that you will be able to learn the piece as a beginner with.

The theme song features a variety of note types and uses different bow strokes as well, providing you with a way to practice different bow techniques.

“Hedwig’s Theme” is also played on three strings of the violin, allowing you to practice with three of the four strings that are on your instrument.

Summing up our List of Easy Violin Solos and Pieces

As you can see, there are plenty of simple violin songs for beginners to choose from and we hope this list has helped make your selection process a little easier!

If anything on the list piqued your interest but you don’t have enough time at this moment to learn it right away, bookmark this page and come back when you’re ready.

The most important thing is that no matter what song or how difficult, all music can be played with slow and deliverate practice.

So get out there and start playing!

Photo of author
Written by Izaak Walton
Izaak Walton is a violinist and violin teacher based out of Denver, Colorado. Izaak received a Master’s in Violin Performance at the University of Denver, and a Bachelor’s in Violin Performance from the University of Georgia. Exposed to a variety of violin methods and musical styles, Izaak built passions for music history, literature, and violin technique.