Sing Books with Emily, the Blog

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, an Illustrated Song

Posted on: December 30, 2011

“Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” is a Singable Picture Book SURE THING.  I haven’t met a kid yet who didn’t love to sing “Rudolph.”

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Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Words and Music by Johnny Marks
Published by World International Publishing Limited, Great Britain, 1989
ISBN #: 7235-8891-0

This is the only copy I’ve ever found of “Rudolph” the SONG.  All other Rudolphs I’ve found have been the original story book by Robert L. May (the story upon which the song is based).  It will be great fun to sing the song with the youngsters.  They are going to love it!

To view or print this book, click here:
rudolph spb
This book is for home, library or classroom use only.

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Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Original Story by Robert L. May
Written for Montgomery Ward Department Store in 1939
Illustrated by Denver Gillen
Set to Music by Johnny Marks (1948)
(I created a sing-along book for Johnny Mark’s tune with the Denver Gillen Illustrations.  Fun to sing!)

To view or print a Singable Picture Book with these vintage pictures and the text of the song, click here:
rudolph song with original story pix (2)

This book is for home, library or classroom use only.

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rudolph-the-red-nosed-reindeer-w-chords
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Words and Music by Johnny Marks
Arrangement for SBWE
Art by Eloise (2009)
To view or print this page, click here:
rudolph-the-red-nosed-reindeer-w-chords

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RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER
Words and Music by Johnny Marks
Based on the Character Created by Robert L. May

You know Dasher and Dancer
And Prancer and Vixen
Comet and Cupid
And Donner and Blitzen.

But do you recall
The most famous reindeer of all?

Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer
Had a very shiny nose
And if you ever saw it
You would even say it glows.

All of the other reindeer
Used to laugh and call him names
They never let poor Rudolph
Join in any reindeer games.

Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa came to say:
“Rudolph with your nose so bright,
Won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”

Then all the reindeer loved him
As they shouted out with glee
Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer
You’ll go down in history!

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Kids enjoy singing the song with extra “comments” and actions.

Here are the lyrics and “comments” that kids can sing in (RED) and actions in (GREEN) italic

RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER
(with comments and movements)

Words and Music by Johnny Marks
Based on the Character Created by Robert L. May

You know Dasher and Dancer
And Prancer and Vixen
Comet and Cupid
And Donner and Blitzen
But do you recall
The most famous reindeer of all?

Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer
(REINDEER)
(Put hooked first two fingers up behind your head like antlers)

Had a very shiny nose.
(LIKE A LIGHT BULB)
(Flash fingers in front of your nose, from fist to jazz hands)

And if you ever saw him,
(SAW HIM)
(Put your hand up over your eyes like it is a sunny day and you’re looking off the side of the boat like a sailor)

You would even say it glows.
(LIKE A LIGHT BULB)
(Flash fingers in front of your nose, from fist to jazz hands)

All of the other reindeer
(REINDEER)
(Put hooked first two fingers up behind your head like antlers)

Used to laugh and call him names.
(LIKE PINOCCHIO)
(Pinch the end of your nose and draw hand back to mimic Pinocchio’s growing nose when he lied)

They never let poor Rudolph
(RUDOLPH)
(Put hooked first two fingers up behind your head like antlers)

Join in any reindeer games.
(LIKE MONOPOLY)
(Pretend you are moving game pieces around on a game board in the air)

Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa came to say:
(HO HO HO)
(Round your arms out in front of you like Santa with a big round belly, and keep doing this until the next movement)
“Rudolph with your nose so bright,
Won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”

Then all the reindeer loved him
(LOVED HIM)
(Put your hands over your heart)

As they shouted out with glee,
(YIPPEE!)
(One arm “Yippee” gesture)

Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer,
(REINDEER)
(Put hooked first two fingers up behind your head like antlers)

You’ll go down in history!
(LIKE COLUMBUS)

(Salute)

**********************

My son Mo’s depiction of Rudolph pulling Santa’s sleigh,


Santa & Rudolph by Morgan Philip Gleichenhaus, 2009-2011
Santa, Rudlph, my son Mo and the coming of Christmas…

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2014 blog post from Smithsonian about Rudolph’s 75th Anniversary:
http://americanhistory.si.edu/blog/rudolph-red-nosed-reindeer-turns-75

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An informative wiki article about the song, here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolph_the_Red-Nosed_Reindeer

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Click here for an interesting set of facts about the song (including that Johnny Marks was the brother-in-law of Robert L. May),
http://bussongs.com/songs/rudolph_the_red_nosed_reindeer.php

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Lots of info in this wiki about the Rankin Bass Stop Action Animation that I grew up with and still love to watch with my kids:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolph_the_Red-Nosed_Reindeer_(TV_special)

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More great info here:
http://www.rankinbass.com/rudolphhome.html

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Link to 2006 New York Times article about the re-discovery of the puppets from 1960 Rankin Bass special and their restoration:
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/23/arts/television/23rudo.html

**********************
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Gene Autry sings “Rudolph,”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j6OC7Y4n3xs

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The Temptations sing “Rudolph,”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcuvlIgSj0Y

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Burl Ives sings “Ruldolph,” (plus, this video has sing-along lyrics)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Io0Wh6urZbY

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A page for the Sing Books with Emily SINGABLE ADVENT CALENDAR

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: Seems like most everybody loves to sing about Rudolph!  If you’re feeling up to it, you can sing the song with the funny comments and gestures, too!

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SBWE Advent Calendar Rudolph
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Words and Music by Johnny Marks

To view or print the “Rudolph” SBWE Singable Advent Calendar page, click here:
SBWE Advent Calendar Rudolph

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Addendum, 12/15/2016

You might think RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER is just a cute, catchy children’s Christmas song that came from a charming stop-animation Christmas special you saw when you were a kid.

But it endures.  It is frequently recorded and adapted.  I think this is for a reason.  Beneath the froth is some real substance.  It’s a story about someone with a hidden talent, bullied and unappreciated until someone with a spark of open minded, out of the box thinking, finds a use of this wonderful thing (once derided), this thing, this black swan, that had been right there (abused) under our noses all along.

It’s an underdog story.  And don’t we all feel this way, at least a little.  If only the world could see that I’ve got something special to offer?

When I sing this to kids now, I always follow it up by saying that I love this song.  It’s fun to sing and everyone can’t help but know it already (since it’s in the air and easy to latch onto).  But the songs is a story and it has a message in it: EVERY PERSON IS IMPORTANT. Every person has got something special about them that no one can take away, and, assuming this about each person, we should be respectful of each other (no matter what) in honor of that special thing (whether we yet know what that special thing is or not).

I can’t help but be a little preachy about it. But I think it is OK to preach a little, especially those messages, those universal truths, that we all need to know!

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Here is an amazing adaptation of Rudolph’s story by Eclipse 6:

 

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I LOVE Dolly Parton’s version.  She makes a point of calling out (in a spoken word section) the song’s message.

And don’t forget her wonderful song, COAT OF MANY COLORS, that one is important, with a similar message, too

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Rudolph’s Defying Gravity

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Related Posts

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CHRISTMAS

A Collection of Singable Picture Books that celebrate CHRISTMAS!
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/11/28/singable-picture-books-for-christmas/

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SANTA SONGS

For a post dedicated to Singable Picture Books about Santa (with sing-along track suggestions and YouTubes), click here:
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2010/12/17/may-i-suggest-sing-about-santa/

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FROSTY THE SNOWMAN, A SINGABLE PICTURE BOOK

Another SPB “Sure Thing”
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2011/12/27/frosty-the-snowman-a-singable-picture-book/

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Santa, Rudolph, my son Mo and the coming of Christmas…

https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2011/10/23/santa-rudlph-my-son-mo-and-the-coming-of-christmas/

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SINGABLE PICTURE BOOKS OF THE GREAT AMERICAN SONGBOOK

https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2011/09/10/american-songbook-singable-picture-books-and-michael-feinsteins-foundation-for-the-preservation-of-the-great-american-songbook/

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SBWE Singable Advent Calendar: Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

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Ruby the Red Nose Reindeer, an Illustrated Song
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2016/11/05/ruby-the-red-nose-reindeer/

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RUDOLPH THE RED NOSED REINDEER, AN ILLUSTRATED SONG
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2011/12/30/rudolph-the-red-nosed-reindeer-a-singable-picture-book/

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COAT OF MANY COLORS, AN ILLUSTRATED SONG
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2016/08/30/coat-of-many-colors-an-illustrated-song/

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TOLERANCE, KINDNESS AND COMPASSION
Singable Picture Books Celebrating Tolerance and Compassion (another list inspired by Nikki)
https://singbookswithemily.wordpress.com/2013/02/28/singable-picture-books-celebrating-tolerance-and-compassion-another-list-inspired-by-nikki/

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