Dona Nobis Pacem is perhaps the most famous of singing rounds, and certainly one of the loveliest.
This free vocal sheet music comes with free guitar tabs and also treble staff for pianists, vocalists, fiddlers, and other instrumentalists.
Here is the familiar part of the melody, arranged for guitar:
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
The Latin words of this beautiful singing round mean "Give us peace."
Most people are only familiar with the melody of the beginning, or part 1. Parts 2 & 3 provide harmony for that melody, giving body and fullness to the music.
But those parts are pretty tricky to learn! Learning this beautiful round has been more difficult for my singing groups than most other rounds.
This song would make a very beautiful Christmas performance for a group of guitarists, if three took the melody, and one played backup chords.
I'm considering persuading my current group of guitar players that this is just what they want to do for our next Christmas recital!
For guitar, I like the way the melody works in the key of D. But for fiddle/violin, I think the key of G is easiest for beginning students.
Here is the singing round all on one page, on treble staff with no guitar tablature:
When practicing Dona nobis pacem with just one student, I play the chords for an accompaniment. Hearing the harmonies helps students stay on pitch.
Because the only repetitious element is the text (the lyrics) this round is harder to learn than many others. It is worth the trouble, however!
The links for the guitar tablature arrangements:
The links for the vocal line lead sheets:
Enjoy this beautiful vocal round!
A pretty round with a reach of an octave, slow-moving notes, and easy intervals. The scale-wise movement makes this song easy for a beginner.
With lyrics from an older time, this is more difficult than many rounds, but compensatingly more beautiful, with more complex harmonies as well!
New lyrics for an old round by Haydn - well-suited to a mix of voices, a satisfying round
Lots of big interval jumps, even octaves, make this round fun and tricky.
Originally from Germany (Kaffee), this is great fun to sing! With new English lyrics that mention mochas, lattes, and "coffee black!"
Difficult! Quite difficult for beginners, this beautiful round works best with a bigger group of singers, or even instrumentalists, unless your singers are experienced with harmony
Pretty, and fairly easy, as it moves primarily in descending steps, this is a wonderful Thanksgiving song!
Haida is vigorous and fun - there are two spots that invite a clap, adding to the rhythmic feeling of this song. Along with "Coffee," this is a favorite, frequently requested!
This brisk but pretty round from England compares a deer to a rabbit, and a man to a woman!
An unbelievably pretty round, with lyrics that DO NOT do it justice! One of my students' perennial favorites.
The first round I use with beginning singers. Very singable!
Another brisk Hebrew round, lovely and minor.
A fun 2-part round from Australia, good for classroom singing
A very pretty little tune with nice major harmonies. A quick study!
Short, and very easy. This is a sweet melody with simple harmonies.
A song about peace, from Israel. Very lovely.
Viva la musica
A little different - there is a bit of dissonance to learn to sing through. A joyful melody!
A street-seller's cry from England.
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...