Ukulelia recently caught up with Ian Whitcomb, Don of the Ukulelia College of Musicology. (Maybe he's a Superdon...) Sez he,
"Have you told your audience about how they can watch me strumming Ukie on the Tonight show and other shows from the 60s by visiting YouTube and putting in my name? Over 60 videos."
"PS: my new Mel Bay songbook is published at the end of this month: "The Ian Whitcomb Songbook" --25 of my own songs all uke friendly. You can get details by calling 1-800-- 8-- MELBAY."
Well, the book is not out as of this posting, but check back here around July 31. In the meantime, if you don't have all of Ian's other books, get them now. All of Ian's books include CD recordings of the songs contained therein, and are really useful references for the old chestnuts that Ian arranges, as well as for Ian's own original compositions. Plus the song arrangements include full verses in addition to the choruses, which is something that few uke books do.
And now, if you still need more Ian, you must make a pilgrimage to the Oregon Festival of American Music in Eugene, OR, August 1-11, 2007. Each year the Festival has a unique theme. This year it's a tribute to Richard Rogers. Ian is a regular on the playbill at the OFAM. Here's a page with a listing of the various appearances that he'll be making this year. Lots of Ian this year, including:
- Where or When, the opening gala. On the bill with Bucky Pizzarelli and Dick Hyman. August 1, 2007
- On Your Toes, a comparison of how Rogers wrote with Hart vs. Hammerstein, August 3
- Isn't It Romatic?, a public jam session with Ian as MC, August 4
- The Apprenticeship of Rogers & Hart, an erudite lecture by Don Whitcomb, also August 4
- Hallelujah, I'm a Bum, a look at Rogers's Hollywood years, August 8
- Rockin' Rogers, another erudite lecture on the adaptation of Rogers's songs to new musical genres, August 8
- The Garrick Gaieties, a look at Rogers & Hart's Tin Pan Alley days, August 9
Note: If you attend all of Ian's performances and submit a 500 page essay on the theme "Why Broadway Should Stage an All-Ukulele Revival of South Pacific," you will receive 7 credits toward your BU (Bachelor of Uke) Degree from the Ukulelia College of Musicology, Kaka'ako Campus.