Bransle Gay

I came across the music for this on another ukulele website and frankly was shocked at how bad the arrangement was – even though the other tabs seemed to be excellent. It was arranged in Cm – don’t know why, I have no reason to believe that this would have been the original key (most guitar versions I saw were in Am but that doesn’t prove anything either). But what really got me was the fact that there were long passages (four or more bars) where the entire melody was played on just the first string, ranging from the first to the eighth fret. One of the most important things we can learn as beginners is how to minimize fretting hand movement by playing across the strings, not up and down the fretboard. And I’m not even talking about campanella here, simply economy of movement to make playing easier and smoother. Anyway, I transposed it up a tone to Dm which makes it an ideal candidate for campanella and this is what you get. Download the tab for it here

By the way, I said it was in Dm but it starts and ends with a G, so you could say it’s in G dorian. Play the first Gm chord with your 4th, 3rd and 2nd fingers, leaving your first finger free to hit the C on the fourth string, fifth fret (I couldn’t get Guitar Pro to show the fingering no matter what, it was hidden behind the double G on the stave).


Deck the Halls

This is a simple arrangement of a simple carol, but a great melody for campanella picking. Notice how during the first part I leave my ring finger on the F (third string, fifth fret). At least here, for once, campanella makes the fingering easy, not trickier as usual!

Get the tab for this here:
Deck the Halls – Campanella Ukulele

You might also be interested in Ding Dong Merrily on High (Bransle de l’Officiel) arranged for three ukuleles.