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Ukulele phenomenon

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Andy7 14 Nov 16 - 08:55 PM
GUEST,cnd 14 Nov 16 - 09:52 PM
Les in Chorlton 15 Nov 16 - 05:19 AM
banjoman 15 Nov 16 - 05:27 AM
Brakn 15 Nov 16 - 06:15 AM
Sandra in Sydney 15 Nov 16 - 07:38 AM
Backwoodsman 15 Nov 16 - 07:45 AM
bubblyrat 15 Nov 16 - 07:51 AM
Rob Naylor 15 Nov 16 - 09:26 AM
leeneia 15 Nov 16 - 10:24 AM
Banjo-Flower 15 Nov 16 - 10:36 AM
Bee-dubya-ell 15 Nov 16 - 10:43 AM
punkfolkrocker 15 Nov 16 - 11:15 AM
Mooh 15 Nov 16 - 11:42 AM
GUEST,Ebor Fiddler 15 Nov 16 - 11:48 AM
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Subject: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Andy7
Date: 14 Nov 16 - 08:55 PM

I don't know whether it happens elsewhere - but here, in my part of southern England, ukuleles are suddenly the 'in thing' in communal music making!

A friend recently invited me to accompany her to a regular session that she'd been attending for some time. So I went along, taking the cheap baritone uke that I acquired a while back. (The baritone uke has the same chord shapes as the top 4 strings of the guitar, so nothing new to learn.)

And I was amazed, that there were almost 100 people there in the hall! A real balance of ages, genders, ethnic backgrounds - all having great fun, as far as I could tell, playing their ukes and singing along with gusto!

It didn't suit my personal musical taste. The great majority of the songs were pop and rock numbers from the past 30 years.

But I couldn't find any fault at all with such a phenomenon, that encourages so many people to come along, make music, have fun, play to the best of their ability and sing their hearts out!

Beginners were really welcome too; and they even have a thing they call the 'X chord', which means if you don't know a particular chord in a song, you just damp all 4 strings with your left hand and strum along with everyone else, while not actually making much sound.

My experience of that evening left me wondering ... how could we make folk music this attractive again, so that people of all ages and backgrounds want to come along and join in? That's what folk clubs used to be like!


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: GUEST,cnd
Date: 14 Nov 16 - 09:52 PM

Regarding the ukulele phenomenon I've noticed it too. Especially in for young/teen girls or effeminate guys. Probably because it's relatively easy to learn (as compared to guitar, banjo, concertina, etc) and quite a lot less of an investment size wise and money wise.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Les in Chorlton
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 05:19 AM

I saw a yurt (?) full ar Shrewsbury FF last year and was genuinely impressed.

It is the obvious entry level instrument - but for amazing music checkout the Uke Orchestra of GB:

Here


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: banjoman
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 05:27 AM

The ukulele seems to have usurped the place in schools that the Recorder occupied for a long time.
Not a bad thing as it encourages all kids to get involved in music from an early age.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Brakn
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 06:15 AM

As has been said above, it is relatively easy to learn, I'd say as easy as a guitar, banjo, concertina. It would depend on what level you want to get to. I bought a UBASS - a great instrument.

Uke Orchestra of GB - brilliant. Go see them if you can.

As for GUEST above - Regarding the ukulele phenomenon I've noticed it too. Especially in for young/teen girls or effeminate guys.

LOL What a stupid remark. Yes I did LOL.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Sandra in Sydney
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 07:38 AM

the ukulele phenomenon is all over Australia, too!

Australian ukulele clubs and groups


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 07:45 AM

The Pukelele Phenomenon has been around for several years in the United Kingdom - at least five, probably more.

I hate the bloody things.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: bubblyrat
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 07:51 AM

I seem to have become a "victim" and am now playing for a ukulele band in the Okehampton ( Devon , UK ) area ; naturally,we are called "Okelele ". Not that I have actually tried to play the dreaded instrument per se, but rather fill the role of accompanist , guitar,percussion etc.It is all rather good fun,really !


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 09:26 AM

It's not "suddenly"....the upswing in popularity started about 6 years ago and grew to its present proportions over 3 years ago.

I remember back in 2012 the session I went to in a local pub was struggling to attract more than half a dozen attendees whereas the uke evening that happened on alternate weeks got 40-50 people in every time.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: leeneia
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 10:24 AM

It's good for people to be playing an instrument, getting out of the house, and leaving their screens. I'm happy to hear of it.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Banjo-Flower
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 10:36 AM

I play in a ceilidh band and a rock band and a ukelele group and have great fun in them all

I find it keeps me on my toes more than sticking to one genre

variety is the spice of life alledgedly

Gerry


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 10:43 AM

I'm not a big uke fan, but if I have to be exposed to a large number of people, all playing the same instrument, I'd rather it was ukes than lap dulcimers.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 11:15 AM

I bought one on whim about 16 years ago..

Quickly worked out a few essential chords.. then soon enough got bored with it.

Even played a couple of Clash and The Who songs for my own amusement..
years before that fad became so commonplace fashionable..

I think it's great so many kids are learning a stringed instrument instead of recorder,
but I'm sick of student wannabe 'folkies' who think they are so cool and original strumming barely in tune ukes....

One thing I really like about this instrument is the 2 'bass' strings in the middle..
An idea I've adopted for stringing some of my electric guitars....


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: Mooh
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 11:42 AM

For many years I had not a single ukulele student, then suddenly about 4 years ago the phone started to ring with enquiries. Guitar and bass were king, with a few mandolin and banjo students, but no one took the uke seriously. I love the instrument and teaching it has added considerable variety to my work.

Want to sweeten your recorded rhythm tracks? Ukulele. Want to bring a smile to every face in the room? Ukulele.


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Subject: RE: Ukulele phenomenon
From: GUEST,Ebor Fiddler
Date: 15 Nov 16 - 11:48 AM

There is a young genius who comes to my local session who actually PLAYS the thing. He has a tenor and it is not uncommon, when he starts a tune, for the rest of us just to shut up to listen gobsmacked.
Mind, I used to think a recorder was a pretty soppy "instrument" until I heard a certain local ceilidh band with a member who plays "killer recorder" ... But I was probably jealous, because the teachers at my Junior School seemed to believe that the possession of a pair of ovaries was a necessary qualification to play this instrument!


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