Canon in D (and C) ‘Ukulele Tab by Johann Pachelbel

Canon is one of the most recognizable classical pieces ever. With these ‘ukulele tabs you can learn how to play Canon in C or Canon in D.

Johann Pachelbel makes a great example of outlining harmony with melody in this piece. With just single notes you’re able to hear the chord changes. This style of writing allows a piece to be played by one classical instrument and still sound full – no strumming required.

To achieve this illusion, Pachelbel created long lines of eighth notes – followed by 16th notes in the B part. This means it’s a busy and fast piece to really study.

Of course, if you use you ‘ukulele to its full potential and fill in the gaps with harmony, you might end up with something like this:

Canon in D ‘Ukulele Tab

Canon is usually seen played in the key of D. This is traditional and is what piano players everywhere pretty much stick to. However, to make it easier for ‘ukulele, I chose to also make a tab in the key of C.

Playing Canon in D on your ‘ukulele from the tab is fine, but in order to become familiar with the fingerings you should probably make an effort to memorize it. I like taking one bar at a time and looping it. Just play the one bar over and over on your ‘ukulele until it’s perfect, then move on to the next. Some people like to work backwards – starting from the end of the song.

If you’re a beginner, I’d chose the ‘ukulele tab for Canon in C. If you’re more comfortable with picking and moving across the strings, try the version in D.

Canon in D ‘ukulele tab

Canon in C ‘ukulele tab

Alternate Canon in D Uke Tab

This is a very simple arrangement containing the bare-minimum of embellishments. If you want a more elaborate Canon in D ‘ukulele tab to work from, try out Dominator’s transcription of Daniel Ho’s recording.

By Brad Bordessa

I’m an ‘ukulele artist from Honoka’a, Hawai’i, where I run this site from a little plantation house in the jungle. I’ve taught workshops internationally, made Herb Ohta Jr. laugh until he cried, and once borrowed a uke to jam with HAPA onstage in my boardshorts. More about me