Beautiful Dreamer

Parlor song
First published in 1864
Words by the American songwriter Stephen Foster

First verse:
Beautiful Dreamer, wake unto me,
starlight and dewdrops are waiting for thee.
Sounds of the rude world heard in the day,
lulled by the moonlight have all passed away.


Beautiful Dreamer guitar tab and notes (pdf)

tabs tabs & notes


Beautiful Dreamer instrumental guitar (mp3)

Beautiful Dreamer - guitar tab, notes, chords and lyrics

"Beautiful Dreamer" is a song by Stephen Foster (perhaps most known for "Oh! Susanna" and "Swanee River") written around 1860. It is by old tradition sometimes called a parlor song. The song has lived on and in the 20th century it has been performed by artists such as Bing Crosby and Roy Orbinson.

The music transcriptions of the song with tabs and notes are available for download as PDFs. It's free for personal use only.

Beautiful Dreamer (full accompaniment)

"Beautiful Dreamer" for guitar with full accompaniment. Free download in pdf-file and audio.

Beautiful Dreamer guitar accompaniment

Beautiful Dreamer (only melody)

"Beautiful Dreamer" tablature notation for guitar.

Beautiful Dreamer notes and tabs

Tips on how to learn this song

First of all, you should notice the structure: the bars 1-4, 5-8 and 13-16 are identical or almost identical. The curved lines (so-called ties) in the bars 4, 8, 16 and 18 indicates that the tones are played with a longer duration (see the versions in pdf-files that include standard notations for details of the time durations).

Because of the uncommon time signature (9/8), there are many tones to play in some bars, but the rather slow tempo makes it a not so very challenging melody for the guitar.

Lyrics and chords

Beautiful Dreamer chords in the key of C
Verse 1:
(C)Beautiful Dreamer, (Dm)wake unto me,
(G7)starlight and dewdrops are waiting for (C)thee.
(C)Sounds of the rude world (Dm)heard in the day,
(G7)lulled by the moonlight have all passed a(C)way.

Verse 2:
(G7)Beautiful dreamer, (C)queen of my song,
(Am)list while I (D7)woo thee with soft melo(G7)dy.
(C)Gone are the cares of (Dm)life's busy throng,
(G7)beautiful dreamer, awake unto (C)me.
(F)Beautiful (C)dreamer, a(G7)wake unto (C)me.

Verse 3:
(C)Beautiful dreamer, (Dm)out on the sea,
(G7)mermaids are chanting the wild Lore(C)lei.
(C)Over the stream let (Dm)vapors are borne,
(G7)waiting to fade at the bright coming (C)morn.

Verse 4:
(G7)Beautiful dreamer, (C)beam on my heart,
(Am)e'en as the (D7)morn on the stream let and (G7)sea.
(C)then will all clouds of (Dm)sorrow depart.
(G7)beautiful dreamer, awake unto (C)me.
(F)Beautiful (C)dreamer, a(G7)wake unto (C)me.

Uncommon, poetic and archaic words:
thee = you
woo = persuade to marry
throng = crowd
e'en = even

Especially one progression returns throughout the song: C - Dm - G7 - C. One chord, D7, is non-diatonic. With a slight variation, does all four parts end with the typical V(7) - I sequence.

There are possibilities to change to key by using a capo. These are the keys that the song would transpose in depending on which fret the capo is put:

Key, time, tuning and tempo

Information about "Beautiful Dreamer" considering musical key, time signature, tuning and bpm.

Key signature music symbol


The presented version of Beautiful Dreamer is played in the key of C.

Time signature music symbol

Time signature

The song is played in 9/8 tempo (a compound time including three dotted quarter notes per measure).

Tuning overview


The song is normally played in standard tuning (EADGBE).

BPM symbol and numbers

Tempo (BPM)

The tempo in beats per minute is 75 for the presented version.