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Thread: What's up with Ukes?

  1. #26
    Khaaaan!! Captain Kirk's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lucas View Post
    Don't knock it until you try it. Even Sam Bush is getting in on the uke action. Check this out: https://ukuleletimeinnashville.com
    Michael Wilson

  2. #27
    Registered User Owl Hoo Hoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Love my baritone and tenor mandos tuned in 5ths just so I can play familiar tunes with different tone.

    Lotsa fun!
    Steven

  3. #28

    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Apologies to the previous poster who said it, but THIS is the video that started it all. (At least for me. I never thought of a ukulele as a "real" musical instrument until I saw this. I blame Tiny Tim.)


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  5. #29
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Johnson View Post
    Apologies to the previous poster who said it, but THIS is the video that started it all. (At least for me. I never thought of a ukulele as a "real" musical instrument until I saw this. I blame Tiny Tim.)

    That's some real good playing! And I agree, you can absolutely shred on nylon strings. Another exhibit, Rodrigo y Gabriela:



    Personally however, if I was interested in getting into the nylon-type of sound I'd prefer a classical guitar - wider tonal range, gives access to more tunes. BUT, I can see someone preferring the ukulele for various reasons - cheaper, easier to keep in tune, easier to carry, or just because it has a different "character" than a guitar.

  6. #30
    Registered User Dave Hicks's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Johnson View Post
    Apologies to the previous poster who said it, but THIS is the video that started it all. (At least for me. I never thought of a ukulele as a "real" musical instrument until I saw this. I blame Tiny Tim.)...
    I had the same revelation a few years earlier when I heard Lyle Ritz play some fine jazz on the uke.

    D.H.

    Commemorative Edition Post - 20 years on the Cafť


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  8. #31
    Confused... or?
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Whoa... how could I forget?? Thanks, all, for reminding me:

    Back in '09 or so, when my wife's annual biological conference took us to Honolulu (always stay longer than the conference!), we spent a pleasant hour or two in a uke shop inside one of the big hotels along Waikiki beach. The 20-ish shop kid was most helpful, and most entertained by a) my insights vs. mandolin, plus that I was aware of Jake Shimabukuro, and b) my wife's incredibly good perception of tone vs. her incredibly bad perception of pitch... just sayin'! Right before we left, found that we'd been speaking with Jake S's brother!
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  10. #32
    small instrument, big fun Dan in NH's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    I blame Kate Micucci

  11. #33
    Circle of Fifths NewKid's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    I had 19 ukes in 2013 and now down to one. I bought my Phoenix Bluegrass mandolin in 2015 and never felt the need for another. The thing I miss most about ukes was socializing with uke players I would have never met in my usual circle of friends. I was a member of a fantastic group in Missouri called The Ukulele Fight Club and that has been the height of my musical experience to date since I have reverted to a bedroom player again.
    2009 Phoenix Bluegrass

  12. #34
    coprolite mandroid's Avatar
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    Question Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Local community college has a Music class , just for/with Ukes, and then they do ensemble shows..

    George Harrison was, reportedly, a Uke evangelical...

    writing about music
    is like dancing,
    about architecture

  13. #35

    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Quote Originally Posted by mandroid View Post
    George Harrison was, reportedly, a Uke evangelical...

    George played uke on several cuts on his last album, which is fabulous.

  14. #36
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    I've been teaching ukulele for several years -- intro and occasionally intermediate -- for a local town rec department. Never have a problem getting a half-dozen or more students for a six-lesson course.

    My students are 75% women, of all ages. They are drawn to uke as a simpler, accessible, affordable instrument -- one where after a lesson or two you can play You Are My Sunshine and similar. They also appreciate the social aspects of playing an instrument with others; to most it's the first instrument they've tried, and the first time they've played in a group.

    Despite the new visibility of virtuoso players, the main thrust of uke playing is song accompaniment, in my experience. I will try to intersperse a bit of melody playing, and also a smattering of chord theory, in the curriculum, but will mostly stick to teaching chord fingerings, simple strums, and "by ear" chord selection (what's a 1-4-5 chord progression?) to try to prepare students to go out on their own and learn songs that they want to master.

    There's a huge proliferation of uke vids on YouTube, and I suggest that students cruise them and see if anything works for them. I also refer them to local ukulele "interest groups" (Bernunzio had one pre-pandemic, may be re-forming) where players can meet, learn and swap songs. The local main branch library also used to host Saturday morning sessions; I led one before COVID shut things down.

    Also would mention the influence of Jim Beloff, who developed the Fluke triangular ukulele, the Flea mini, and the Daily Ukulele songbook.

    By the way, my main performance instrument is a '30's Regal 8-string "taropatch," tenor sized. I usually introduce my classes to a variety of ukulele-family instruments -- ukulele-banjo, resonator uke, tiple, baritone uke, and of course the majestic Polk-A-Lay-Lee. Lots to choose from, lotsa fun to play, especially with others.
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  16. #37
    Registered User Simon DS's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Itís not just the ukulele, itís the people who play them too. Always laughing and smiling. They canít stop it.
    Itís a happy instrument.

    Check out this songbook, I defy anyone to find just one miserable song in there!

  17. #38

    Default Re: What's up with Ukes?

    Jake Shimabukuroís cover of Bohemian Rhapsody is what convinced me to get a uke. But I also love these folks for the interesting instruments they choose. Uke in this case:

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o4g0aGsXVZE


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