Here’s a lovely three-part arrangement of Silent Night (Stille Nacht, heilige Nacht) for all you guitar looper players to wrap your fingers around! Any simple record/overdub looper pedal will work fine for this little arrangement.

As mentioned, the arrangement consists of three-layered loops: the chords, the melody, and an extra guitar loop to add colour and variety (here’s a link to the free pdf score with all three parts).

Let’s begin with recording loop one, then overdub the other two loops.  

Step 1 – Record Guitar Loop One

The first loop provides the chords (harmony) and structure for the whole song.  This is usually an excellent place to start with layered looping.  I have arranged this first loop for fingerstyle guitar, played on the acoustic, but an electric could work too. 

Silent-Night-Guitar-Looper-Pedal-Loop-One

Ok, now on to Loop 2:

Step 2 – Record Guitar Loop Two

Now that you have a recorded version of loop one, you are happy with let’s move on to Loop two. This layer is primarily the melody to Silent Night, with a few exceptions. I played the melody in different positions to add some tonal colour and nuance. In bar 9, take a two-bar break and let the previously record loop one take the lead. This space provides a nice contrast in the arrangement and might be a good idea to try this in other loops you play. After the little break, you will have to do some fingerpicking down the neck to add the harmony part:

Silent-Night-Guitar-Looper-Pedal-Loop-Two

Ok, hopefully, you have two synced up loops and ready to start on the last layer.

TIP – Remember to stop the loop recording at the first beat of the bar.  Check out my blog “How to Make a Multi-layered Guitar Loop” for more detail.

Step 3 – Record Guitar Loop Three

Loop three combines extra harmony and harmonics to add colour and a counterpoint to the first two loops.  I find this loop is the most fun to experiment with while the other two loops play in the background.  You may want to add some delay to add some dimension and glue to the overall piece. 

I played natural and artificial harmonics in a few spots, particularly at bar 8.  You will have to hold the C on the third fret – fifth string and play the harmonic with your thumb and finger of the right hand.  This is a little tricky if you are new to this technique, so you will need to practice this before recording. 

Silent-Night-Guitar-Looper-Pedal-Loop-Three
Here is the full 3-part guitar looper audio track for Silent Night:
Ok, hopefully, that went smoothly! If you are having any trouble, try to simplify the parts where necessary. Leave any messages and links to guitar loops you would like to share in the comments below.

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