Thursday, September 30, 2004

Baseball to Bring Harmony Back to Washington?

With the recent announcement that the Montreal Expos will relocate to Washington D.C. next season, we learned that the Washington Senators' Hall-of-Fame broadcaster, Bob Wolff, is a kindred soul. Back in the late '50s, Bob was instrumental in prompting several players to suit up as the "Singing Senators", with Bob backing up on ukulele.

In today's Washington Post, Bob signalled his willingness to suit up again:

"Wolff, who strummed a ukulele on long train rides, coaxed some of the team into harmonizing one night. Roy Sievers, Jim Lemon and other Senators actually appeared on the "Today" show in 1958, crooning for a full 45 minutes. Ballplayers in a barbershop quartet on NBC. Honest.

You ask Wolff if he is interested in play-by-play work again, given that he still works part-time for a cable station on Long Island, the Madison Square Garden network, and is going on his eighth decade in the business.

"No, when my daughter started calling airplanes 'bye-bye Daddies,' I knew I needed to stop traveling," he said. However, Wolff said he will reprise the Singing Senators, but only if Jose Vidro and Livan Hernandez can sing or need spare cash. 'Oh, I'm ready to come back with my ukulele.' "

It'd be nice to have some more talented Singing Senators for a change, wouldn't it? (Photos) Link (free subscription required)

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Sonic Uke Broadcast Tonight (9/28/04)

Sonic Uke sez:

From 8pm-9pm ET (New York) tonight we'll be broadcasting live on the web from the stoop of the Murray Spaceshoe. Check it out at

The broadcast uses Quicktime ... the free plugin is available as a download from Apple Computer, for Macintosh and PC at

Then, at 10.30 we return to MNN for the first of the second season of Midnight Ukulele Disco. Tonight, our special guest is Howie Leifer. Don't miss his inspired uke-puppetry !

Mary Anne plans to join Ted from the stoop; Syd is working on a new song; the Incredible Uke has a new feat of strength; and rumour has it the Naked Uke guy may return ...

Midnight Ukulele Disco


Tonight, 28th September 10.30 ET

Manhattan Neighborhood Network

Time Warner: Channel 67

RCN: Channel 113

Manhattan free-to-air: Channel 16

or streaming live on the web at:

Archives of past shows are at Ukulele Disco. Link

Monday, September 27, 2004

David Gunnarsson Ukes

Swedish artist David Gunnarson paints amazingly beautiful masks for pro hockey goalies. And an occasional ukulele. Shown here is the "Bebopalua" uke he painted for Gyllene Tider's Per Gessle. It's a replica of George Harrison's self-painted 1965 electric guitar (a photo of which you'll find at the link). Be sure to check out Gunnarson's "Hardrocker" design, too.

(You may have to poke around on David's site a bit to locate the photos. In the left hand nav, roll over "Art of Dave" and click on "Section 2". On the dropdown button that says "choose category here", select "misc". Or look for a button for the George Harrison tribute ukulele on the right hand side of the site.) Link

Midwest Ukefest

You need to be Back Home Again in Indiana at the end of October for the Second Annual Midwest Ukefest. Hosted by Geoff Davis and those irrepressible Key Strummers, this year's festival runs from Thursday, October 28 through Sunday, October 31, 2004 in Indianapolis. Don't miss it! Link

SoCal Ukulele Festival This Saturday

Load up your Woody and head to sunny Cerritos this Saturday, October 2, 2004 for the 3rd Annual Southern California Ukulele Festival. Take the kids, your parents, the slacker neighbor kid who plays the guitar... Link

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Shimabukuro: Hendrix of the Ukulele?

Personally, I like to think of Jimi as the Jake of the guitar... Link

Santa Cruz and Hawaii: Separated at Birth?

I envy folks that get to live in Santa Cruz. There are at least 300 uke players in the vicinity. There's the beach. There's the Boardwalk. And you can almost taste the hot dogs and french fries they sell... Link

Monday, September 20, 2004

Tiny Tim and Mr. Plym

Proving that, once again, legitimizing the ukulele remains an uphill battle:
"There are three people in this world who under no circumstances - WHATSOEVER - do you wish to be informed about what went on in their bedrooms.

The first two are your parents.

The third is Tiny Tim, the world's only Depends-wearing, falsetto-trilling ukulele master, who died in 1996.

That's what makes the new tell-all book by his Des Moines manager, "Tiny Tim and Mr. Plym: Life as We Knew It," as repulsively engrossing as watching a boa constrictor gulp down live rats."

Friday, September 10, 2004

Jack Johnson Ukulele Charity Auction

Uke-totin' fans of Jack Johnson will want to check out this auction which benefits the Power to the Peaceful concert tomorrow, September 11, 2004, in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Bidding starts at $300. Link
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