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55+ Easy Saxophone Songs For Beginners

Are you (or do you know of) a beginner saxophonist looking for a set of beginner-friendly saxophone songs to get to grips with?

You’ve found it!

As we’re sure you’ll agree; becoming an expert saxophonist is no easy feat. Not only will you have to carefully coordinate your fingers, but you’ll also have to nail your posture and breathing technique to hit the right notes.

As a result, it’s super important to make sure you’re playing the right sort of songs when you’re just starting out – songs that are heaps of fun, but beginner-friendly and designed to develop your technique in the right way.

In this article, our team of writers-slash-former-beginner-saxophonists have put together an all-encompassing list of 55+ easy saxophone songs for beginners, complete with free video lessons and links to free sheet music.

Most of these songs can be played on any time of saxophone, including the soprano, alto, tenor and baritone saxophones.

Let’s dive in!

The Songs

1. The Simpsons Theme (Danny Elfman)

Originally composed in 1989, this is one of the most well-known theme songs in the entire world. It’s also heaps of fun to play, which is great motivating factor!

This track is particularly good for incorporating a mix of both slurs and staccato notes into your saxophone technique.

Free sheet music

2. 25 or 6 to 4 (Chicago)

This jazz rock classic is one of the most important songs for beginner saxophone players to learn. This song is famous for its iconic opening riff and its enigmatic title.

Free sheet music

3. Ain’t Too Proud to Beg (The Temptations)

This is one of the most famous Motown songs ever recorded, and is an absolute essential for any beginner saxophone player to learn.

The song was so popular that it actually resulted in Norman Whitfield (one of the songwriters) to replace Smokey Robinson as The Temptations’ producer.

Free sheet music

4. Uptown Funk (Mark Ronson featuring Bruno Mars)

“Uptown Funk” is one of the most popular jobs of the 2010s. The song is a throwback to the funk and pop sounds of the 1980s and was a megahit for Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars.

This song was playing everywhere in 2014 & 2015, and there’s a reason. This is one of the most fun and catchy songs ever recorded.

Free sheet music

5. Bad Bad Leroy Brown (Jim Croce)

“Bad Bad Leroy Brown” is Jim Croce’s boogie woogie classic from Life and Times, about one of Croce’s old army buddies.

The friend got sick of the army and deserted – only to return a month later to pick up his paycheck. The friend was immediately arrested when he returned.

Free sheet music

6. Drunken Sailor (Traditional)

Dating back to the sailing ships of the early 19th century, this well-known shanty is a must-have in your beginner saxophone song repertoire.

It’s particularly good for developing your staccato technique and dynamics (we’d recommend starting off pianissimo, then building up to fortissimo over the course of the piece). 

Free sheet music

7. Fly Me to the Moon (In Other Words) (Bart Howard)

“Fly Me to the Moon” is a song originally written by Bart Howard with the title “In Other Words”. It was popularized by Frank Sinatra, whose version is commonly associated with the moon landing.

Free sheet music

8. Careless Whisper (George Michael)

This is arguably one of the most well-known saxophone lines in the history of popular music. It’s also a sure-fire crowd pleaser – bound to impress anyone in the room once you’ve got it nailed!

This one is particularly great for incorporating syncopation into your technique as a beginner saxophonist, as well as getting comfortable with changing dynamics quickly.

Free sheet music

9. Hallelujah (Leonard Cohen)

“Hallelujah” is one of the most popular songs by one of America’s most popular songwriters, Leonard Cohen. This is one of the most important songs in American history.

Free sheet music

10. Summertime (George Gershwin)

“Summertime” by George Gershwin is a jazz standard that was originally written for an opera, Porgy and Bess.

This song is an example of an “aria”, a type of opera composition that’s written for just one voice. Beginner saxophonists will benefit from learning this song by expanding their understanding of music.

Free sheet music

11. All You Need is Love (The Beatles)

“All You Need is Love” is a classic psychedelic pop song from The Beatles. The word “love” appears seventy-five times in this song.

This is one of the most iconic songs from the psychedelic era.

Free sheet music

12. The Godfather (Love Theme) 

Also known as “Speak Softly, Love”, this song was composed for the soundtrack to The Godfather and is one of the most iconic pieces of soundtrack music in film history.

It’s delightfully creepy; the perfect song for a beginner saxophonist to learn.

Free sheet music

13. Autumn Leaves (Joseph Kosma)

Written in 1945, “Autumn Leaves” serves as one of the most popular jazz standards for saxophone.

It’s a little trickier than some of the other beginner saxophone songs on this list, but will get you up to speed with must-master techniques such as glissando.

Free sheet music

14. Do You Believe in Magic? (Lovin’ Spoonful)

“Do You Believe in Magic?” is one of Lovin’ Spoonful’s most enduring hits. The song has been covered by artists such as Shaun Cassidy and Aly & AJ.

It’s an essential song for beginner saxophone players to learn.

Free sheet music

15. Fight Song (Washington State University)

“The Fight Song” is probably the best and most famous of any college football “fight song”.

Even if you never went to school there, this song is going to make you want to “fight fight fight for Washington State.” 

Free sheet music

16. Sister Christian (Night Ranger)

“Sister Christian” by Night Ranger, is one of the most legendary songs from the arena rock era.

The song is about the songwriter’s shock at how fast his little sister was growing up.

Free sheet music

17. Amazing Grace (Traditional)

“Amazing Grace” is a traditional Christian hymn that dates back to the late 1700s.

The song was written by an English clergyman but it has become especially popular in the United States for both religious and secular uses.

Free sheet music

18. The Pink Panther (Henry Mancini)

Henry Mancini was one of the most prolific composers of the 20th Century and pop culture is full of his tunes.

The Pink Panther is just tone of the many films and TV shows to feature a soundtrack with his music.

Free sheet music

19. Satin Doll (Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, and Johnny Mercer)

“Satin Doll” is another classic jazz standard. This one has been covered by countless people including Ella Fitzgerald and Nancy Wilson.

Free sheet music

20. A Taste of Honey (Bobby Scott and Ric Marlow)

“A Taste of Honey” is an important part American music history.

This traditional pop song has been recorded by countless artists including The Beatles, Billy Dee Williams, Lenny Welch, The Hollies, Barbara Streisand, James Booker, The Ventures, and others. It was originally used in the play A Taste of Honey.

Free sheet music

21. Shake It Off (Taylor Swift)

Speaking of catchy songs, is there anything catchier than “Shake It Off?” This song was everywhere back in 2014 and is still one of Swift’s most popular songs.

Learning this song won’t just give you a fun song to impress your friends with, it’ll give you a better understanding of what makes a song catchy.

Free sheet music

22. My Bonnie Lies Over The Ocean (Traditional)

This traditional Scottish folk song sounds wonderful on the saxophone, while also being reasonably easy to play.

It sounds particularly good with ritardando-style playing thrown in, meaning it’s a great one for injecting personality and feel into your technique.

Free sheet music

23. My Heart Will Go On (Love Theme from “Titanic”)

“My Heart Will Go On” is another classic movie soundtrack theme song. It was performed by Celine Dion for the soundtrack to Titanic but it was written by James Horner and Will Jennings.

Free sheet music

24. In the Mood (Glenn Miller)

“In the Mood” is a classic jazz standard from the era of big band music. It was recorded by both Glenn Miller and Edgar Hayes & His Orchestra.

Free sheet music

25. Peter Gunn (Henry Mancini)

This is another soundtrack song, but this one comes from TV instead of the movies. Henry Mancini wrote this for the classic TV show Peter Gunn.

Free sheet music

26. How Deep is Your Love? (The Bee Gees)

“How Deep Is Your Love?” is a pop ballad by The Bee Gees that was famously used in the soundtrack to the movie Saturday Night Fever.

Free sheet music

27. God Bless America (Irving Berlin)

“God Bless America” is one of the most famous patriotic songs in American history. It was composed during World War I and regained popularity during World War II.

Free sheet music

28. Happy (Pharrell Williams)

“Happy” is a hit song from 2014 by Pharrell Williams, that was also included on the soundtrack to the popular movie Despicable Me 2.

Free sheet music

29. Evermore (Disney)

“Evermore” is a popular song composed for the soundtrack to the remake of Beauty and the Beast, by Alan Menken and Tim Rice.

Free sheet music

30. Just the Two of Us (Bill Withers, William Salter, and Ralph MacDonald)

This smooth jazz classic was written by Bill Withers, William Salter, and Ralph MacDonald, but it was performed by Grover Washington Jr. It was featured on Washington Jr.’s album Winelight.

Free sheet music

31. Night Train (Jimmy Forrest)

“Night Train” is an instrumental jazz standard written in the twelve-bar blues format. This is one of the most common song structures in western music and shows up in nearly every style of music.

Free sheet music

32. Pure Imagination (Gene Wilder)

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is one of the most beloved films of all time, thanks in part to Gene Wilder’s performance as Willy Wonka.

“Pure Imagination” is from the soundtrack and is a great song for beginner saxophonists to learn.

Free sheet music

33. Rolling in the Deep (Adele)

“Rolling in the Deep” is one of Adele’s biggest hits. Along with “Hello”, this song cemented her status as one of the best songwriters of the 21st Century.

Free sheet music

34. See You Again (Carrie Underwood)

Carrie Underwood has been popular for a long time, thanks to her excellent songwriting. “See You Again” is a perfect example of her ability to write a catchy song.

Free sheet music

35. The Star-Spangled Banner (Traditional)

As a country that broke off from the British Empire, it’s fitting that the national anthem of the United States is based on an old British drinking song.

The lyrics were written by Francis Scott Key as he watched the British bombard Fort McHenry during the War of 1812.

Free sheet music

36. Yakety Sax (James Q. “Spider” Rich and Boots Randolph)

If there is just one song that every beginner saxophone player needs to learn, it is this one. The song was famously used on The Benny Hill Show and it is one of the most famous and fun pieces of music ever recorded on a saxophone.

If you are a beginning saxophone player and you don’t know this song yet, get cracking on learning it!

Free sheet music

37. Hello, Dolly (Jerry Herman)

“Hello, Dolly!” is a popular song by Jerry Herman for the musical Hello, Dolly! The song was later covered by Louis Armstrong.

Free sheet music

38. Stay With Me Baby (Lorraine Ellison)

“Stay With Me Baby” is a classic soul song by Jerry Ragovoy and George David Weiss. It first became a hit when Lorraine Ellison recorded it in the 60s and it’s been popular ever since.

Music journalists Dave Marsh and Kevin Stein consider it to be the greatest female vocal ever recorded.

Free sheet music

39. Baker Street (Gerry Rafferty)

“Baker Street” is a hit song by Gerry Rafferty from 1978. The song was a global hit and it also features an iconic saxophone solo played by Raphael Ravenscroft.

Free sheet music

40. All of Me (John Legend)

“All of Me” is a hit song by John Legend, dedicated to his wife Chrissy Teigen. The soul/R&B song appears on his album Love in the Future and is a perfect song for beginner saxophonists to learn.

Free sheet music

41. The Hustle (Van McCoy)

“The Hustle” is one of the most iconic songs of the disco era, written and performed by Van McCoy, alongside the Soul City Symphony. It was included on the album Disco Baby.

Free sheet music

42. Roar (Katy Perry)

“Roar” is Katy Perry’s pop rock/arena rock banger from 2013 about self-empowerment and standing up for yourself. It’s a must learn for anyone learning saxophone.

Free sheet music

43. Swing Low, Sweet Chariot (Traditional)

This popular traditional song is particularly-apt for beginner saxophonists due to its slow tempo and single octave range.

It leans heavily on dotted notes, serving as a great introduction to more complex rhythms (while still remaining comfortably in the realm of a beginner saxophonist).

Free sheet music

44. Carnival of Venice (Traditional)

“Carnival of Venice” is a popular Italian folk song based on the Neapolitan folk hymn known as “O Mamma, Mamma Cara”. The song was later popularized by Niccolo Paganini and has been interpreted countless times by a variety of performers.

Free sheet music

45. Tequila (Chuck Rio)

“Tequila” is a golden oldie, a Latin rock instrumental piece from the 1950s. This song was written by Chuck Rio and performed by The Champs.

The song is based on a mambo beat and beginner saxophonists who learn this song will improve their general understanding of music.

Free sheet music

46. Mas Que Nada (Jorge Ben)

“Mas Que Nada” is a classic samba song by Jorge Ben. Samba is a style of traditional folk dance music in Brazil.

Free sheet music

47. Stand by Me (Ben E. King, Jerry Leiber, and Mike Stoller)

“Stand by Me” is an old jazz standard that was most famously performed by Ben E. King for the album Don’t Play That Song!

It was also later used in the film Stand By Me, based on a novella by Stephen King.

Free sheet music

48. Basin Street Blues (Louis Armstrong)

“Basin street Blues” is a 1928 song by Spencer Williams that was popularized by Louis Armstrong.

The song has since become a popular Dixieland jazz standard and has been covered by countless artists.

Free sheet music

49. Doxy (Sonny Rollins)

Famously recorded by Miles Davis, this mid-50’s jazz tune is a must-have in your beginner saxophone song list.

It features a wonderful saxophone solo that’s comfortably within a beginner’s abilities, which can significantly boost your confidence on the instrument.

Free sheet music

50. Deacon Blues (Steely Dan)

“Deacon Blues” is a hit song by Steely Dan from their album Aja. This song is a yacht rock classic and one of the best songs for beginners to learn on saxophone. 

Free sheet music

51. Old Time Rock and Roll (Bob Seger)

Remember the movie Risky Business?

This Bob Segar hit got a boost in popularity after the movie came out and audiences loved the scene of Tom Cruise dancing in his underwear to this song.

Free sheet music

52. Circle of Life (Disney)

“Circle of Life” is a hit song from the soundtrack to The Lion King. This is one of the most popular soundtrack songs ever.

Free sheet music

 

53. Watermelon Man (Herbie Hancock)

Another fantastic jazz standard that’s perfect for beginner saxophonists. Released in 1962, this hard-bop track boasts an excellent (yet super easy) diatonic saxophone solo which a beginner can pick up in no time.

Free sheet music

54. Stompin’ at the Savoy (Edgar Sampson)

This is another great standard from the Jazz Age, written by Edgar Sampson. This is a great example of a song written in 32 bar form with the AABA structure.

As such, it’s an important song for beginner saxophonists to learn, to develop their understanding of music theory.

Free sheet music

55. Stella By Starlight (Victor Young)

As one of the most popular jazz standards, this tune almost serves as a rite of passage for beginner saxophonists. While the solo in this piece can be a little complex, there are plenty of beginner versions online that are slightly slower and follow a clear diatonic pattern. 

Free sheet music

56. Sweet Home Alabama (Lynard Skynard)

This is a song that almost everybody has heard before, so it’s a good idea to learn to play it. This is one of the best songs ever, there’s a reason why it’s still popular.

Free sheet music

Closing Thoughts

We’re sure this list has spoiled you for choice when it comes to compiling the perfect set of easyt saxophone songs for beginners!

If you enjoyed this article, why not check out our ultimate list of beginner harmonica songs next?

About Author

I'm George; the founder of Indie Panda. I'm passionate about helping independent musicians realize the full potential of their talents and abilities through a strong work ethic, coherent project identity and a strong logistical foundation.

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