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Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?

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Big Al Whittle 18 Mar 21 - 02:22 PM
The Sandman 18 Mar 21 - 01:58 PM
Big Al Whittle 18 Mar 21 - 09:32 AM
The Sandman 18 Mar 21 - 03:33 AM
Felipa 17 Mar 21 - 04:13 PM
Big Al Whittle 17 Mar 21 - 10:39 AM
The Og 17 Mar 21 - 09:36 AM
Big Al Whittle 17 Mar 21 - 08:33 AM
Felipa 16 Mar 21 - 06:31 PM
The Sandman 16 Mar 21 - 05:52 PM
Big Al Whittle 16 Mar 21 - 10:53 AM
Felipa 16 Mar 21 - 10:14 AM
leeneia 16 Mar 21 - 10:07 AM
Felipa 15 Mar 21 - 09:32 PM
Elmore 15 Mar 21 - 09:28 PM
The Sandman 13 Mar 21 - 03:15 PM
Big Al Whittle 13 Mar 21 - 11:28 AM
The Sandman 13 Mar 21 - 11:07 AM
Big Al Whittle 13 Mar 21 - 07:57 AM
The Sandman 10 Mar 21 - 10:32 AM
RTim 07 Mar 21 - 10:59 AM
Gordon Jackson 07 Mar 21 - 10:16 AM
keberoxu 06 Mar 21 - 10:24 PM
GUEST,Fyldeplayer 06 Mar 21 - 03:18 AM
The Sandman 05 Mar 21 - 03:01 PM
Mo the caller 05 Mar 21 - 08:32 AM
The Sandman 05 Mar 21 - 02:44 AM
vectis 04 Mar 21 - 10:47 PM
GUEST,Frank Hamilton 04 Mar 21 - 09:10 PM
GUEST,Phil d'Conch 01 Mar 21 - 10:33 PM
Big Al Whittle 01 Mar 21 - 12:22 PM
GUEST 28 Feb 21 - 04:20 PM
GUEST,Bossmack 28 Feb 21 - 12:59 PM
Big Al Whittle 28 Feb 21 - 06:16 AM
GerryM 27 Feb 21 - 09:09 PM
JennieG 27 Feb 21 - 06:30 PM
Donuel 27 Feb 21 - 06:29 PM
GUEST,Felipa 27 Feb 21 - 08:52 AM
leeneia 14 Apr 11 - 03:38 PM
PHJim 01 Mar 11 - 06:25 PM
PHJim 01 Mar 11 - 06:17 PM
PHJim 01 Mar 11 - 06:12 PM
PHJim 01 Mar 11 - 06:06 PM
GUEST,Grishka 27 Feb 11 - 02:45 PM
GUEST,Desi C 27 Feb 11 - 12:07 PM
GUEST,Grishka 27 Feb 11 - 06:38 AM
PHJim 26 Feb 11 - 08:38 PM
PHJim 26 Feb 11 - 08:21 PM
Stringsinger 26 Feb 11 - 05:02 PM
Mooh 26 Feb 11 - 02:34 PM
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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 02:22 PM

yes theres all that - of variable quality.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 01:58 PM

are there any formby videos and there should be sheet music of his stuff


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 09:32 AM

My ambition , when I started the uke last year was to go to Blackpool and meet all the George Formby fans. since Covid , of course - there haven't been any meetings.

I wasn't really good enough last year. I've lost a bit of impetus. my local teacher is very good but she doesn't really do the sort of stuff I'm interested in.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 18 Mar 21 - 03:33 AM

playing a uke could be like having a dead george formby in the living room


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Felipa
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 04:13 PM

If you play ukelele and take it seriously, you could be very interested in joining the Menucha Ukelele Band Camp online 7-9 April 2021. The programme will work on a Pacific timezone as Menucha is in Oregon U.S.A., but the organising team will "record the classes and make them available afterwards so you can revisit them. You'll be able to take ALL of the classes!" (there is a fee, of course)

Lots of detail at: https://menucha.org/programs/uke-band-camp


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 10:39 AM

I nearly became a bodhran player.
One night this group came and they had this amazing instrument - all the way from Ireland and made from a goatskin. you could see the colours the goat had been - all brown and white hairy bits.

I was going to send for one, like it. However my wife said it was cruel doing that to a goat. it would be like having a dead goat in the living room.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Og
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 09:36 AM

I started on a soprano ukulele in the 7th grade, graduated to baritone and on to guitar, banjo, bass, and mandolin. It's a great starter instrument for small hands...like a present for for a grandchild!


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 17 Mar 21 - 08:33 AM

People play instruments for all sorts of reasons. run a folk club long enough and you will hear a great many, but probably not all of them.

I had a deaf bloke come one time - totally refused to let anyone tune his guitar - he regularly used to empty the place. (this was in the years before digital tuners). it was tough on my wife, who was disabled and couldn't get out the way.   And you looked such a brute if you attempted to wrest the instrument from him to tune it.

One uilean pipe player turned up with the pipes in the box he'd got them, still selotaped. We had his his very first attempt to play them.
As none of us knew how they should sound, it went down quite well!
Since taking up the uke, I've met some right buggers, some amazing uke players as well of course. I think you've got to be a bit philosophical about it. humanity (folks) is very diverse.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Felipa
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 06:31 PM

My comments earlier today were replies to messages from michaelr and tritoneman on 23 Feb.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 05:52 PM

Why can't a person just play ukulele because it's enjoyable?
for most people progress on an instrument is part of the enjoyment to make progress of any sort, a little bit of effort and practice is needed[ this is what i interpret as taking seriously]. beyond that ..well there are degree of seriousness, i suppose, but how about just regular practice, checking tuning. I am not asking for virtuoso performance but just some respect for audiences
some may want to play for an hour a day some may want to play for ten minutes a day. even ten to 15 minutes a day will see improvement, in my experience as you improve it becomes more enjoyable
not taking it seriously means not bothering to practise and not bothering to pick it up and play it in private, not bothering to check your tuning etc.
well that is not enjoyable for listeners.
Personally. when i play i try to do my best i practise[ the amount can vary] and performances can vary [not just because of practice , but bio rhythms etc]
Finally, i would not find it enjoyable to be given any instrument and told to play it if i had never practised on it.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 10:53 AM

Bloody hell! Getting in tune...whatever next!!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kd1ZuBnuJek


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Felipa
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 10:14 AM

The standard tuning for soprano, concert and tenor ukeleles is g C E A. You can even find online tuners and instruction videos to help you tune the instrument.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: leeneia
Date: 16 Mar 21 - 10:07 AM

Why does everything have to be serious?

Remember when there were funny songs on the Top 40? Remember when there were TV shows where people sang, danced and told funny stories? Remember when families went for long rides in the car and sang songs on the way?

Why can't a person just play ukulele because it's enjoyable?


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Felipa
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 09:32 PM

TRITONEMAN - I read "at the age of 91" instead of "at the age of 9, I". I had to look back when I read that you later moved on to guitar.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Elmore
Date: 15 Mar 21 - 09:28 PM

No, we shouldn't take the uke seriously, but I take allison young, who plays, "I wanna be loved by you" and several other songs, accompanying herself on ukulele very seriously. Many songs on You tube.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 13 Mar 21 - 03:15 PM

a bad workman blames his tools. anon


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 Mar 21 - 11:28 AM

didn't know you did Major!
Basil fawlty


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 13 Mar 21 - 11:07 AM

then why bother to tune a guitar why bother to play percussion in time why bother to try and sing in tune


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 13 Mar 21 - 07:57 AM

Perhaps the best thing for music is not be taken seriously.


i remember Billy Connolly being told by some sage that comedy was a serious business. he said, "Aye! It is for that bastard!


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 10 Mar 21 - 10:32 AM

Yes when the player treats them seriously , no different from any other inastrument


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: RTim
Date: 07 Mar 21 - 10:59 AM

Yes...See and hear here......
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsGtqH-YISQ


Tim Radford


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Gordon Jackson
Date: 07 Mar 21 - 10:16 AM

I don't think George would've got the Beatles job had he not played guitar as well ...


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: keberoxu
Date: 06 Mar 21 - 10:24 PM

I do love the sequence of the
Phil d'Conch post
followed by the invaluable Mudcatter,
Frank Hamilton.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Fyldeplayer
Date: 06 Mar 21 - 03:18 AM

I consider myself a fairly serious guitar/bouzouki player so when l got a tenor uke that was approached the same way. Chords are easy to work out but more interesting finger picking creates a harp quality - goes well with duet concertina. It’s also good fun across a number of song styles, get one soon. I also use exclusively for Dementia online singing sessions as it’s very clear sound and can be kept simple, great for strong singing.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 05 Mar 21 - 03:01 PM

yes thats fair enough mo, but then they shouldnt mind if people criticise ukeleles or their effort. its true there's a lot of enjoyment to be had in music at whatever level. Joining in., but it may not be enjoyable for the people listening , practice perhaps should be done in private or playing with other people in the way you advocate should possibly be done in private.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Mo the caller
Date: 05 Mar 21 - 08:32 AM

We should take it as seriously as the player takes it.

But life is short, no-one has time to take everything they do 'seriously'. And there's a lot of enjoyment to be had in music at whatever level. Joining in.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: The Sandman
Date: 05 Mar 21 - 02:44 AM

like any instrument it deprnds how they are played. unfortunateley some players dont give the instrument respect, they think they do not need to practise, that they can hide in a large group.
its a four stringed instrument and has as just as much potential as any other four stringed instrument, such as banjo.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: vectis
Date: 04 Mar 21 - 10:47 PM

They are taken most seriously down here in New Zealand. Very popular too.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Frank Hamilton
Date: 04 Mar 21 - 09:10 PM

The ukulele has an ability to play sophisticated chords with four voices (strings). They were
popular during the Twenties and Forties because they could accompany the popular music of that time. You can even play jazz changes on them.

Check out some of the more virtuoso players and you will be surprised at what the uke can
do. Hawaiian music has some tricky rhythms that can be played and some of the Hawaiian players are excellent.

Some of the Hawaiian uke makers produce instruments with sweet tones. Koa wood seems to be the best. I have a Kanele'a uke which has a great sound. The uke comes from a Portugese
instrument called the Braghina or Machete brought to the Island by Portugese sailors.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Phil d'Conch
Date: 01 Mar 21 - 10:33 PM

OP: ...huddles of menopausal men in intense discussions about the merits of their instruments as if they were discussing attractive women or their Taylor or Martin guitars.

I'm imagining OP's reaction to the likes of Sarah Longfield covering Slayer's Payback (NSFW, parental advisory &c &c.)

Britni Paiva – Europa

Rob Scallon – War Ensemble

Ukulele Anthem (Amanda Palmer)
“Sid Vicious played a four-string fender bass guitar and couldn't sing
And everybody hated him except the ones who loved him
A ukulele has four strings, but sid did did not play ukulele
He did smack and probably killed his girlfriend nancy spungen
If only sid had had a ukulele, maybe he could have been happy
Maybe he would not have suffered such a sad end
He maybe would have not done all that heroin instead
He maybe would've sat around just singing nice songs to his girlfriend
So play your favorite cover song, especially if the words are wrong
'Cos even if your grades are bad, it doesn't mean you're failing
Do your homework with a fork
And eat your fruit loops in the dark
And bring your etch-a-sketch to work
And play your ukulele
Ukulele small and forceful
Brave and peaceful
You can play the ukulele too it is painfully simple
Play your ukulele badly, play your ukulele loudly
Ukulele banish evil
Ukulele save the people
Ukulele gleaming golden on the top of every steeple
Lizzie borden took an axe, and gave her father thirty whacks
Then gave her mother thirty-one, and left a tragic puzzle
If only they had given her an instrument, those puritans
Had lost the plot completely
See what happens when you muzzle
A person's creativity
And do not let them sing and scream
And nowadays it's worse 'cause kids have automatic handguns
It takes about an hour to learn how to play the ukulele
About same to teach someone to build a standard pipe bomb
You do the math
So play your favorite cover song, especially if the words are wrong
'Cos even if your grades are bad, it doesn't mean you're failing
Do your homework with a fork
And eat your fruit loops in the dark
And bring your flask of jack to work
And play your ukulele
Ukulele, thing of wonder
Ukulele, wand of thunder
You can play the ukulele, too
In london and down under
Play joan jett, and play jacques brel
And eminem and neutral milk hotel
The children crush the hatred
Play your ukulele naked
And if anybody tries to steal your ukulele, let them take it
Imagine there's no music, imagine there are no songs
Imagine that john lennon wasn't shot in front of his apartment
Imagine if john lennon had composed "imagine" on the ukulele
Maybe folks would have more clearly got the message
You may think my approach is simple-minded and naïve
Like if you want to save the world then why not quit and feed the hungry
But people for millennia have needed music to survive
And that's why i've promised john that i will not feel guilty
So play your favorite Beatles' song
And make the subway fall in love
They're only $19.95, that's not a lot of money
Play until the sun comes up
And play until your fingers suffer
Play LCD soundsystem songs on your ukulele
Quit the bitching on your blog
And stop pretending art is hard
Just limit yourself to three chords
And do not practice daily
You'll minimize some stranger's sadness
With a piece of wood and plastic
Holy fuck it's so fantastic, playing ukulele
Eat your homework with a fork
And do your fruit loops in the dark
Bring your etch-a-sketch to work
Your flask of jack
Your vibrator
Your fear of heights
Your nikon lens
Your mom and dad
Your disco stick
Your soundtrack from "karate kid"
Your ginsu knives
Your rosary
Your new rebecca black CD
Your favorite room
Your bowie knife
Your stuffed giraffe
Your new glass eye
Your sousaphone
Your breakfast tea
Your nick drake tapes
Your giving tree
Your ice cream truck
Your missing wife
Your will to live
Your urge to cry
Remember we're all going to die
So play your ukulele”


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 01 Mar 21 - 12:22 PM

its a bloody interesting question really. There are obviously some people for whom - a musical instrument is serious business. serious like World War One, or The Gettysburg address.

i think for me, its a trivial pursuit. not that i don't try hard. not that i don't spend more than I should on musical instruments, but I'm not keen on the idea of being 'a serious musician'. Its like some bloody silly woman saying at a children's party - "Oh the little chap is SO serious!" when what she means is the kid is a little po-faced twat.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Feb 21 - 04:20 PM

Any one who thinks a uke is not a serious musical instrument deserves to have one shoved up their bum and asked to play Mozarts horn concerto in e flat.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Bossmack
Date: 28 Feb 21 - 12:59 PM

Or Trump!


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 28 Feb 21 - 06:16 AM

They didn't take Hitler seriously enough....


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GerryM
Date: 27 Feb 21 - 09:09 PM

Amanda Palmer plays & sings The Ukulele Anthem (while tied by toilet paper to the Sydney Opera House): https://youtu.be/njDQsQpFIqA


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: JennieG
Date: 27 Feb 21 - 06:30 PM

Here's a nice little tune on a couple of ukes......

Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Donuel
Date: 27 Feb 21 - 06:29 PM

I have 4 ukes that cost 39 dollars to hundreds of dollars.
The cheapest is the best made by Mitchell.
As a begginer it is hard to match the artistry of Jake or others but I have found a niche by using steel strings and taking an acoustic cello approach to the instrument.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Felipa
Date: 27 Feb 21 - 08:52 AM

Matt Argo playing The Entertainer

Maleguena: Aldeine Guerrero
Jose Nguyen


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: leeneia
Date: 14 Apr 11 - 03:38 PM

Does something have to be serious to be good?

Take "the Flight of the Bumble Bee" Is it serious? No. Is it good? Yes.

I maintain the same is true of Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony. It is not serious, but it's good.
==========
In the case of a ukelele, what does serious mean? It means that it's worth money. A fine violin is serious and therefore good, because we are impressed by the money.

A ukelele has just as many strings, but it's not serious and not good, because it's not connected with money in our minds.

Pfui.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 01 Mar 11 - 06:25 PM

Here's a bit of James Hill: James Hill


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 01 Mar 11 - 06:17 PM

...not a very good example of Bob's playing but Bob Brozman


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 01 Mar 11 - 06:12 PM

...or this- Manitoba Hal


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 01 Mar 11 - 06:06 PM

Hey GUEST,Desi C, Play this on the the tambourine, maraccas, ochorinos, cymbals, and spoons.

Jake plays Bohemian Rhapsody


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 27 Feb 11 - 02:45 PM

That's another question: should we encourage anyone with serious ambitions to study the uke? Answer: well, uhum, if she/he is deeply rooted in Hawaiian culture, she/he won't wait for our encouragement; "serious" comedians and genre musicians have been mentioned before; in all other cases: no.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Desi C
Date: 27 Feb 11 - 12:07 PM

I think we should take the Uke just as serious as other instruments like the Tambourine, maraccas, ochorinos, cymbals, and Spoons, and shove em all up the behinds of those stupid enough to play them!


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 27 Feb 11 - 06:38 AM

Stringsinger, I think that we make a huge mistake when thinking fun and seriosity to be mutually-exclusive contrastives.

The "seriosity" of an instrument can be defined by various criteria. One definition is "optimised for sound (according to present-day aesthetics) and virtuosic technique in all keys" - many folk instruments fail this. A second criterion is "historically accurate for the music played". The third criterion: "representing a culturally significant tradition", actually provides a degree of seriosity proportional to that significance.

Needless to say that there is hardly any non-serious instrument. The cheap chirpy plastic strings have created their own culture, like tin whistles and cheap cameras.

The fiddle/violin is considered the flagship of seriosity, particularly among folk instruments. Note however that Stradivari would hardly recognise the sound his instruments produce today, because they have been altered considerably.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 26 Feb 11 - 08:38 PM

...or Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: PHJim
Date: 26 Feb 11 - 08:21 PM

Check out Roy Smeck, Bob Brozman, Manitoba Hal, James Hill, Jake Shumbukuro, Ernest Ka'ai, George Harrison...


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Stringsinger
Date: 26 Feb 11 - 05:02 PM

I think that we make a huge mistake by taking anything of a musical nature too seriously.
There is always room for lightness and fun. Even classical musicians who are playing so-called "serious" music are having fun. "Music is my toy." said Duke Ellington.

That doesn't mean there can't be serious content in song lyrics or in a concert presentation
but too much snobbishness occurs among "amateur" musicians who don't understand that music is for everyone, not just an elite few.

It also means that certain music commands respect for its value.

The ukes are part of a tradition that extend from Portugal to Hawaii and is of course
a cultural staple of Hawaiian music which is quite lovely.

Lighten up about the uke. It's fun, musical, and pretty with a rich lovely history.


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Subject: RE: Should We Take Ukuleles Seriously?
From: Mooh
Date: 26 Feb 11 - 02:34 PM

Yes. I just bought another. Kala soprano model KAKS. Lovely little thing, though the factory strings didn't impress me. Also have a Mahalo baritone. Generally I treat them like guitars, ie Little Wing, House Of The Rising Sun, 12 bar blues, folk songs, and for fun.

Peace, Mooh.


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