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Christmas Song, The (arr Nowak)

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Mel Tormé

Mel Tormé (arr. Jerry Nowak)

Subtitle: Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire

General Info

Year: 1945 / 1974 / 1982
Duration: c. 3:20
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Song
Publisher: Hal Leonard
Cost: Score and Parts – Out of print.

For availability information, see Discussion tab, above.


Full Score
Flute I-II (I doubling Piccolo)
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Cornet/Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion, including:

  • Chimes
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Drum Set (optional)
  • Orchestra Bells
  • Sleigh Bells
  • Vibraphone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The Christmas Song (commonly subtitled Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire or, as it was originally subtitled, Merry Christmas to You) is a classic Christmas song written in 1945 by Bob Wells and Mel Tormé.

According to Tormé, the song was written during a blistering hot summer. In an effort to "stay cool by thinking cool", the most-performed (according to BMI) Christmas song was born. "I saw a spiral pad on his (Wells') piano with four lines written in pencil", Tormé recalled. "They started, 'Chestnuts roasting..., Jack Frost nipping..., Yuletide carols..., Folks dressed up like Eskimos.' Bob didn't think he was writing a song lyric. He said he thought if he could immerse himself in winter he could cool off. Forty minutes later that song was written. I wrote all the music and some of the lyrics."

- Program Note from Wikipedia


None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


  • The Christmas Song, Wikipedia Accessed 29 December 2016
  • Tormé, M.; Wells, R.; Nowak, J. (1982). The Christmas Song: (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire) [score]. Edwin H. Morris; [s.l.].