Friday, 10 December 2010

Ukulele party

You may have noticed I've had an ongoing affair with playing the ukulele this year. A colleague and I set up a ukulele orchestra at work a few months ago. We were essentially a group of beginners with one or two people who had some guitar or ukulele experience. Those of us who lacked said experience made up for it in enthusiasm. It was up to me to make the rest happen. We got started with some simple C and D-redemption songs (if you get lost, you can just play C or D at the right time and redeem yourself) and moved on from there. Since then, my purple ukulele has been running red hot and I've been playing several times a week.

This has been an open-ended goal on my 101 in 1001 list - a bit naughty, really. After all, how do you actually measure something like #92 - Learn how to play the ukulele? (Or maybe that's the teacher in me being far too fussy with defining learning outcomes?) So, here's how I'm qualifying success in having achieved this goal:
  • I have steadily progressed in my playing. I'm now strong enough to start songs and lead a group.
  • I have developed some mighty fine callouses on my left fingertips. (Actually, I'm less than thrilled with that.)
  • I'm now strumming correctly with the tips of my fingers instead of my thumb (most of the time).
  • My chord progressions are much smoother. In the early days, I was ok at playing some individual chords but struggled to change to another. That's so much better now.
  • I no longer need to look at the chords I am playing most of the time. (OK, they're still pretty basic chords, but that's good enough for me!)
  • I have led a ukulele orchestra for nearly six months now and will continue next year. In fact, we totally rocked our staff Christmas party today by playing a 20 minute set! I'm hoping to gather more ukulele enthusiasts for when we start up again in the new year.

Woo hoo!


    Kez said...

    OK so that is totally awesome :)
    I have a guitar and would love a ukelele (hope I spelt it right). My bro has one and every time I see it I want to steal it! Damn, I should have asked him for one for Christmas!
    Anyhow congrats on your skills - I love how summery ukuleles sound!

    Nora - Dinnerware said...

    Nice! Happy holidays to everyone!