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O Come, O Come, Emmanuel


In this lesson we're going to learn the Christmas carol "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel," a hymn celebrating Advent. While the tune's textual origins date back to 13th century plainsong, the most commonly used version of the lyrics was translated in part by John Mason Neale in 1851, and partly by Henry Sloane Coffin in 1916.

Thomas Helmore paired Neale's version of the hymn with the tune "Veni Emmanuel," as part of his 1851 text Hymnal Noted, but the melody dates back further, to a 15th century French burial chant. Coffin's lyrics were added later to complete the most common modern version of the carol. In this lesson we'll learn a simple arrangement of the tune, with the melody in the right hand and 3-note voicings in the left hand.

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