The Erie Canal Song

The Erie Canal Song is still popular after all these years!  Download free piano sheets online, an easy arrangement for beginning readers, lead sheets in two keys, & tabs for your students who play guitar music.

the Erie Canal song with made-easy notes

Download the Erie Canal Song with made-easy notes, short

Download free Erie Canal sheet music for beginner piano, LONG

These music note drawings - piano music with letters - are obviously about helping with reading music notes for beginners.  If this isn't your cup of tea, look farther down the page!

Easy guitar tabs for Erie Canal song

Erie Canal for beginner guitar

Download tabs and play guitar music for Erie Canal

This Am arrangement uses lots of open strings, and fingers 1 and 3... nice guitar music notes for beginners.  There's just a bit of high "A" on page 2, needing fret 5 - good practice for stretching a little outside of position 1.

Here are a couple versions for early intermediate/ late elementary piano, with a fun descending bass line:

Free! download notes for Erie Canal for elementary piano

Free! download notes for Erie Canal music for late elementary piano in Am, short

Free! download notes for Erie Canal music in Dm, short

Alphanotes helper version for Dm short version of the Erie Canal song

If your students like the first page of the canal boat song, then it's a good bet that they'll want the whole thing.  It requires another change of hand position.  Here's what those pages look like, in the key of Dm ( the short version, above, is in Am):

Easy piano notes for late elementary piano, Erie Canal sheet music

Erie Canal easy piano notes for late elementary piano

Download easy piano sheet music 2 pages in the key of Am

Download easy piano sheet music Erie Canal in the key of Dm

I've put no fingering on page 2 of these arrangements.  Erie Canal is brand new for my students, so I'll just keep a pencil handy and we'll work out fingering on an as-needed basis.

And now, here are a couple lead sheets, with Erie Canal lyrics of three verses:

Easy chords songs in Am & Dm, Erie Canal song

easy chords songs for all instruments, Erie Canal

Download free lead sheet in Am

Free lead sheet in Dm

Sorry I don't have any lead sheets for bass instruments or viola... I have run out of steam for now!

"Fifteen Years on the Erie Canal" was written in 1905 by Thomas S. Allen  This song is also known as "Low Bridge, Everybody Down," "The Erie Canal Song," and the way I sang it as a kid, "Fifteen MILES on the Erie Canal."  I had NO idea what the song was about.  But here is a very fun video, with still shots of old canals and mules with action added somehow, that demonstrates just what this song is about!


Do you have a funny story about this music, or does it remind you of something you'd like to share with other readers? Do you have a question? I'd love to hear it!

Please note that all comments are moderated, and will not appear until I have approved them. Also, IF YOU ARE ASKING FOR MUSIC THAT IS NOT IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN, YOUR REQUEST WILL BE IGNORED. That's pretty much any music written in the last 75 years...

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