Shaker Song in G Major
Beginner > Module 1.8

The message of keeping things simple resonates more then ever (it seems harder and harder to do). But I keep trying.

This tune is technically not too hard, especially if you know the Two-Octave G Major scale.

G Major scale: G0-1-2-3-D0-1-2-3 | D3-A0-1-L2-3-E0-1-L2Β 

I think what’s challenging is that there’s less repetition than in a typical fiddle tune.

But you got this! As usual, start by mastering the first two bars…

Basic lesson tutorial

Play-along track & Sheet music

☝️Note: This track and the sheet music should be the same, but the video tutorial is slightly different.


Practice at your own tempo with a G drone:

You can also use the drone to try adding variation or even improvising.

Sheet Music video

Yet another way to practice the tune. Pro tip: click the “βš™” icon to slow it down.


Deepen your practice if this song by taking this workshop:Β Simple Gifts Fiddle Meditation

  • You’ll slowly explore the tune with drone practice, call-and-response, looping and other strategies.
  • You’ll relax the body, breath and mind.
  • You’ll realize a deeper connection to your fiddle and to the music you make.

Adding variation

Here’s a step-by-step lesson which will show you how to add variation to Simple Gifts. First I’ll play a fast tempo version of the tune with some variations I like. Then I’ll go through and show you what I did different from the basic version.

Note: if you are working through the course and haven’t yet learned double stops, I recommend putting this on hold for the moment. It’s better to get a good sound with double stops before adding to melodies.

You can put this on a “Bucket List.” Or don’t mark it as complete above (that way it will remain marked as “Lesson started” which will remind you to return to it later). Or mark as a favorite below.


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6 responses to “Simple Gifts

  1. The sheet music above is missing the letters for the TABS printed above and it makes a really brilliant exercise for learning to read the sheet music for me to work out which string the notes are on! It stops me being lazy reading tabs & actually means I have to look at the notes as I play whilst using the video and backing track too!