Wednesday, December 12, 2012

It's December and Christmas Is All Around....

This month we're pushing the limits of good taste by promoting our selected song as a real Christmas song... but I love it (it even has a ukulele in the video).  And it's fun and easy to play.

Actually you will be learning two songs in one.  Our selection, "Christmas All Around" is a re-do of the Troggs song "Love All Around".   Be warned this is a very bad take off of Robert Palmer.... which makes it more fun for me -- I loved the Robert Palmer girls... ahhhh....excuse me 'women'.

I also finally posted last months handout... "Progressions and Ornamentals".  You can find it on the download page (November) and in the side panel of this Blog  (under 'Handouts')

See you all December 16th... if not.... have a Happy Holiday and fun filled New Year.....

You can find this song and many others on our download page right here.

Monday, November 12, 2012

November.... We Got a Deak Skunk... whewwwww

Yup! We got one stinkin' to high heaven.

For November we have a fun folk song from Loudon Wainwright III called... "Dead Skunk".  It's in the key of G, and is an easy I, V, IV progression... all the way through.  Sounds a bit boring... but the words pick it up to make a surprising fun song.  To some it could be considered to have a PG rating... which is even more fun to sing.

When this first came out in 1972... it took until 1973 to become number 13 on the Billboard charts.  I think it had something to do with the rumor that it was about Richard Nixon.... a dead skunk in the middle of the road... if there ever was one.

You'll find a copy of it on our download page... check it out!

Be sure and listen to the video.

Friday, October 19, 2012

October has been way too much fun... so Show Me The Way To Go Home

The Andrew Sisters give a good rendition of this great song... that almost every one knows how to sing.  I add a new chorus (at least for me)... but leave off the intro - see if you can work out where to lay those chords.

Show Me The Way To Go Home.... can be sung slow and easy - like after a few drinks.  Or in an up tempo swing beat, like the Andrew Sisters do on the Youtube connection.

Again we'll be following a solid beat... so tap those feet... all reet?

Here's where you'll find it....

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sept... Ohhh Donna where can you be......

Richie Valens.... the boy that changed Latino or Chicano rock back in  the late 50's.  "Donna" was one of the lost tapes recorded  in 1958.  Richie died in Febuary 3rd, 1959 in a plane crash with Buddy Holly and J. P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson.   That day is better known as "The Day the Music Died".

Donna is a slow tempo 3 chord easy song to play if you pay attention to the tempo.

This will be a lesson in following the beat... we gotta get those feet tapping and hands strummin' together and in time.

See you all on September 16th..... keep Strummn'

Thursday, August 30, 2012

New pdf.... Ukulele Magazine

Acoustic Guitar.... has come out with a very cool ukulele on-line magazine.  The up-side, it has loads of information for the beginner.

Like 'Shopping for a Ukulele',  lots of good info and some choices here.

The also include a few songs,  they may be a bit advanced but they include the ever popular IZ song 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow'... the chords are mainly one's we know,  and best of all, they show you his strum (this is a bit advanced for me, but it can be done)....  Remember the chorus strum is DDu  uDu  (1 2 n  n4n).

Somewhere.... is worth working out for one of the songs you play and sing for friends or family.... it's always a winner and everyone knows it.  Skip the intro until you have it down.  I'll try to figure it out.

The down-side of this magazine is.... way too many full page ads.

Check it out at Ukulele Magazine

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Live Aloha... September 9th

If you love the ukulele, if you love all things Hawaiian... food, hula, sounds, happy people with shaved ice.  Then get yourself down to the Seattle Center on September 9th.  All things Hawaiian,  all day.  If see a smilin' face it could be me.... say 'Mahalo".

Friday, August 10, 2012

August song... it's our broken heart summer drinkn' song.

Not that I'm a drinking man... but with this summers heat, and if you take in to account those of us that have experienced in the past, a broken heart or two (yes, Mr Spock I mean you)... I just might abide.

"There Stands the Glass" is one of those great drinking and blues songs by Van Morrison.  Yup! 'Van the Man' as his friends and those that peek at his bio on Wikipedia call him.. really knows how to sing the hurt out... then ask for a drink to sooth his pains.

You can't help but put a bit of a sorrowful crack in your voice when you sing this... no you can't.

Our handout (up early), "Uke info and self-tuning" is all about getting to know the parts of you ukulele... and how to tune it, when you lose that chromatic tuner.   And you will.

Our next WikiWiki is the coming Sunday August 19th.  Remember doors open at 1pm... we start strummn' at 1:30.

Added note:  If our summer holds out a bit longer... come join us on Alki for a Jam on September 2nd.

Here's the links you need to see it all:
          WikiWiki front page

          Ballard Wiki info page
          Here's where you go to get the download for this month

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

July holiday... means we're all going to "Dance Tonight".

We always have fun with tunes from Sir Paul McCartney, this one is no exception.   "Dance Tonight" is simple to sing, with only 3 chords - basic one's at that.  And you can strum it slow or fast, it still sounds great.

Last month we had a small group at the WikiWiki, it's tough to compete with Fathers Day.  So that just means our special handout (a transposing wheel), will be handed out again.  You can't get away from learning something at the WikiWiki.

NOTE;  No need to print out the transposing wheel I will have printed copies to give you.

You can download this months song here.

ALKI JAM IN AUGUST.  Just a heads up.  Sadly, I will be on the road that first week in August.  I hope summer lasts a few more months.  If so, then the next Alki Jam in West Seattle will be the first Sunday in September.  That's September 2nd.  Hope to see you all then.

Friday, June 15, 2012

2 folk songs for June.... yippee!

We're getting back to some of our more folksy songs for June.  One from Australian, not so old, but still fun... "Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport".   Next is an early American folk song "Skip, Skip, Skip To My Lou".  Fun to sing and only two chords to boot.   For our workshop we'll transpose both to another key.  Ohhhhhhh so much fun and ukuleles too!

Just go on over to the download page to find your music:

Saturday, June 2, 2012

It's finally like summer and June 3rd is the first Sunday of the month so that makes it time for our first WikiWiki Jam on Alki (Anchor Park).  It's FREE, it's FUN and it's for everybody... all levels of our ukulele friends.  Music starts at 1pm until around 3pm.

I'll send you now to our web site to give you all the info including a map.

See you all there.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Just "Let It Be" for May.... it's too nice outside.

Let it Be…. if only we could.  The Beatles are still so great.  And so many of their songs are simple enough in melody to be just right for the beginner.  Play it slow and simple… Let It Be.

You'll find it here:

Added some Fun links
I've added a few things to the sidebars on the blog.  

If you haven't found them already, look on the left sidebar and you'll find a list of upcoming Ukulele Festivals --  a wine country ukefest, in California, is coming up in September and Dusty String is going to have their Ukefest in June.

Now if you look to the right sidebar… I've added a few of my favorite links to some of the better teaching sights.  Something for everyone from beginner and better.  

You'll find our blog here:

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

April gives me feelin's of movie' on by.......

I forget exactly when, but around the early 80's I was sharing a house with a couple of folk minstrels, vagabonds of the road and music.

The one great thing they did for me was drag me out of the house one night, and introduce me to the sounds of the great Elisabeth Cotton. She happened to be preforming, even though in her 90's, at one of our local Universities. She was and is a pure authentic musician of folk song.

She taught herself to play guitar left handed and upside down, and then wrote our April song, Freight Train, when she was 10 or 11 years of age.

Check it out on downloads page.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

I'm Irish... he's Irish.... she's Irish.... we're all Irish in March.

I pulled this from the 2010 book.... 'cause everyone wants to sing 'When Irish Eyes are Smilin'...... just like the nice folk in the picture.

So grab yourself a pint of Guiness and get over to our download page. And no stopping' for some dang rainbow.....

Oh.... and go look at the March handout on the sidebar - "Pickin' the Chromatic scale"

Friday, February 3, 2012

February's gone Calypso with a I, IV, and V.

Keep that Calypso beat, while you stomp you feet to two great Harry Belafonte songs from his Calypso album of 1956. I have to admit I went to see him in concert, in San Francisco, when this album came out. ( I am soooooo old).

Keeping our "Get Back to Basics" theme, both of our songs are using a simple 3 chord progression of I, IV and V. What's doing with doz Roman numbers you ask.... I'll tell you this coming 3rd Sunday the 19th.

So run your little mouse over to our download page to get your copy of "Island in The Sun" and "Jamaica Farewell".

Also, January's handout "Getting to Know Your fretBoard" is posted over to the right, in the sidebar... under 'WikiWiki Handouts' if you didn't keep your copy last month.

And if you need more, the 2011 Songbook has been compiled and is posted on our download page.

See you Sunday the 19th.

Monday, January 9, 2012

January 2012... We go walkn' With some back to basics.

Yup! Back to basics for the New Year.

We now have in our musical collection of the past two years, oddles of songs that are more intermediate to advanced intermediate level, and fewer songs of the basic 2 or 3 chord variety. Which I am finding that if I am to teach beginners and to have them leave not confused or frustrated, then we need to get more focused on and back to these basic learning steps.

That's not to say... we won't have a few brain teasers. But more along the way of mini-workshops (mainly handouts) of chord studies or progressions, Relative tuning, Transposing, etc.

So let's get started. Our first song of this new year is "These Boots are Made for Walking". It's 3 basics chords in A-- A, C and D.

I'll have a combined book of all the songs we did in 2011 posted to our Wiki website in the next few days. So check on back.

See you all this Sunday the 15th.