Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Duets for One: James Hill

Oh boy, it's here. The latest book in Jumping' Jim's Ukulele Masters series has just been released.

It's James Hill's Duets for One.

My fellow students in the James Hill Ukulele Institute (JHUI) Ukulele in the Classroom Certification Program and I have known that this was in the works for a couple years. Of course, James being James, he neglected to mention that it was coming out under the Ukulele Masters imprimatur. (It's his Canadian side.)

Duets for One advances the techniques that James teaches in the JHUI as well as through his online The Ukulele Way series. It's a style of solo playing that really makes you sound like two players: one on melody, the other on chords and rhythm.

The first 50 copies sold on the Fleamarketmusic site are numbered and signed by James. I can't wait to get it.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Emergency Ukes at Burning Man


Over on Ukulelia's mother site, Boing Boing, our friend and Playa Plucker Rusty Blazenhoff posted a piece about Justin Lange's art installation from this year's Burning Man: a red emergency callbox containing "emergency" ukes.

Maybe our neighborhood Little Library needs to start lending ukuleles, too.

Al Wood will be chuffed to learn that his Uke Hunt logo served as inspiration for the graphic on the back of call box. (I actually don't know whether Al would be not, but I'm always pleased to have the opportunity to say "chuffed.")


Photo credit: Rusty Blazenhoff

(Thanks, Your Fluffiness!)

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Ukalele Daly

This is a new one on me. Never popped up in a search before, most likely due to the non-standard spelling.


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Roto-Uku


In answer to the unasked question: what kind of ukulele would Spock play?

Link

Sunday, July 02, 2017

Lil Rev's West Coast Tour


We got a note alerting us to Lil Rev's West Coast itinerary for the summer. I may try to make the July 22 workshop at Gryphon. Here are the deets:
7-6-17- Sumtur Amphitheater, Papillion, NE
7-8, 7-9-17: Swallow Hill Music Org Denver, CO
7-14, 7-15: Uke U 6 Bend, OR
7-19-17: The Strum Shop, Roseville, CA
7-20-17:Cool Hands House Concert, Grass Valley, CA
7-21-17: Funstrummers, Modesto, CA
7-22-17: Gryphon String Instruments, Palo Alto, CA
7-24-17: SLO Strummers San Luis Obispo, CA
7-25-17: Magnolia Concert Series, Larkspur, CA
7-27-17: KC Turner House Concert, San Francisco, CA
7-29-17: Play Uke Concert Series, Minden, NV
8-5-17: KC Ukers, Mission, KS.
More tour date info at: www.lilrev.com

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Sunshine Ukulele Film



Filmmaker Graham Jones has released what he calls an "anti-feel good movie" titled Sunshine Ukulele, “about a young Irish boy who receives the gift of a ukulele from his uncle and proceeds upon a comic, suburban, mini-odyssey”:
"I wanted to make a film about the impact of the internet upon music and movies. The web has caused some problems, but it has also brought gifts. We’ve all migrated online nowadays, art and entertainment have become increasingly unmoored and rudderless – it’s easier to distribute our work, yet harder to make a living out of it. This is a rather paradoxical, bittersweet era that we are living through together. So I wanted to really riff on that in a film – ask what it all means, not merely for artists but ultimately for children and young people."
We'll post more when we've viewed the film.

Here is an interview with Jones.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Romero Creations "Uke Board" Skateboard by Sector 9



If you dream of shredding like Daniel Ho instead of Jake Shimabukuro, here's your ride.

Pepe Romero and Daniel Ho have a new design for Romero Creations! The Uke Board is a 24" long, 17" wheelbase skateboard made in San Diego, USA at the Sector9 factory. This is a limited edition, has soft 59mm Sector 9 wheels, tail flip, deck concave and a little nose flip as well. This thing rides smooth and fast and is SO fun!
MSRP $169 
Elderly has 'em. Link

Friday, April 07, 2017

An 'Obscenely Optimistic' Ukulele Jam : All Songs Considered : NPR


Jeremy Messersmith on NPR today. The music's growing on me, even if I can't yet bring myself to appreciate his technique.

Reminds me a lot of Stephin Merritt. It's like Stephin without the dark turns. Link to NPR featreu.

Sign up on Messersmith's site and you can download his songbook, 11 Obscenely Optimistic Songs For Ukulele: A Micro-Folk Record For The 21st Century And Beyond.  He's encouraging people to record and post their own versions. Link to Messersmith's site

Seems like lots of people are doing covers. I like this one of "Everybody Gets a Kitten". Link

Thursday, March 30, 2017

It's a Miracle, You Fool...



Ukulelia's resident Multi-Instrumental Genius and Master of Making Everything Look Effortless, Rob Bourassa, offers this original tune. Check out Gary Zimnicki's sweet Maccaferri tenor at 2:25.


Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Island Ukulele Of Kauai

One of my students has an Island Ukulele, and I never knew they had a website. Now I do. Sweet instruments built on Kauai. Link

Monday, March 27, 2017

Beansprout Musical Instruments

Aaron and Nicole Keim's new Beansprout uke site is up. Check it out.  Link

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Ukulele Sighting

We just saw Jordan Peele's Get Out. There's a little ukulele sequence. And it ain't pretty.

Great film, though. Highly recommended. Link


Sunday, March 19, 2017

Ukulele on a Wire, 1929


From the amazing Moving Image Research Collections at the University of South Carolina, here are outtakes from a 1929 Fox Movietone newsreel showing tightrope walker Jimmy Terry walking 39 (45?) stories up between two buildings in Chicago.

Jimmy plays the ukulele and sings "I ain't gonna walk ropes anymore" to the tune of It Ain't Gonna Rain No' Mo' at around 7:30. Keep watching for the moment when he drops the uke.

The full Movietone newsreel plays from 10:30 on.

Link to Video

Image of Jimmy Terry's walk from Modern Mechanix, January, 1930
 
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