Sunday, December 15, 2013

New Year's changes while I am on hiatus.

Some of you may know that I will be on an extended absence for the next two months.  Not to worry, I'll be back in time for the Beginner's WikiWiki in Ballard in March.

The Bad with Good News: No Beginner's WikiWiki in Ballard until March 16th.  While I am gone you'll have no excuse to not practice…. as I'll post each month a  new little learning lesson in this blog - ripped right out of YouTube and brought to you.

So.. let me introduce Brad Bordessa, as he shows you how to add a bit of vibrato to your playing.

Even Better Good News:  While I am gone.  Michael Fox has agreed to facilitate the West Seattle DelWiki Kanikapila… this will be at the usual time - 1pm.   The DelWiki has turned out to be a fun gathering… we play songs, and sometimes one of those songs brings to mind something to share.. it can get wild.  Really!

So come help out Michael at the Uptown Expresso on Delridge in West Seattle (just as you come off of the high-rise bridge) -- that's always the first Sunday of each month.  Even in January and February and that fist part of March that I will be gone.  Thanks Michael.

If you need more information just click here to go to our web site:

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Sept 15th Wiki... Strums for 4/4 and 3/4

Let me introduce you to Ukulele Mike Lynch.  If you don't know him.. get to know him, or at least his YouTube videos.  No matter at what level you think you are with playing the ukulele... Mike can teach you a few things.  He's local... so drop by and see him.  Click on Mike's picture to go to his YouTube profile page and say hello.

I picked two of Mike's videos, both on strumming and both illustrated in my pdf titled "Basic Strum Patterns".  You'll find it under the "Tools" sidebar over on your right of this blog.

4 Very Useful Strums in 4/4 Time - Click Here

4 Very Useful Strums in 3/4 Time - Click Here

See you on Sunday the 15th... in Ballard... doors open at 1pm....  here's directions and more info, if no have.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

August18 WikiWiki... coming up

The third Sunday means it's Wiki Wiki time...  and another "Ukulele Helper", our video for this month.

This is our second video and I thought it would be good to honor the man that to me was one of those responsible of bringing  the ukulele back into most of our lives.  Brother IZ.

No we're not going to play "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" but todays video will give you one man's version of IZ's strum.   I think Mitchell Chang does a very good job.  

This strum is used in all sorts of songs.... if you slow down that 2nd down stroke... it even makes for a great Calypso strum.

Just click on the picture of IZ to go to this months video.

Mitchell's strum pattern is   D  D u    u D u  (remember the D = down strokes, are on the count of 1 2 3 4...).  With the 3 being one of those ghost strokes he talks about.

He's chord progression is:   C, Em, Am and F

Mitchell's last lesson is a tough one.   He's muting all the strings on that down stroke on the 3 count.  That's a hard one, even for me.   Good luck.

See you all on Sunday... August 18th.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

July WikiWiki - Ukulele Yoga

It seems that since I am not adding anymore new songs to our book... I should add something.  Don't you think?

Each month I will post a helpful video or bit of information to help us on way to becoming better players.  If you have found something that has helped you.... a video or lesson plan you've discovered on the web.... let me know and I'll post it.  First come first serve. *smile

For our first post.... I have a video from YouTube by Ukulele Underground's Aldrine Guerrero.  Here he's showing up how to stretch those fingers.  Dang!  On the first exercise he stretches to the 5th fret... I could only do to the 3 errrrr maybe 4 frets... how about you?  Don't over do it, I don't want any lawsuits because of sprained pinky fingers.

Click on the pic to view the video.....

See you all at the Beginners WikiWiki this Sunday on the 21st.

Hey! take me back to the Beginners WikiWiki site, so I can get all the info like time and place.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


It takes me awhile but it just came to me in a Flash - a slow Flash but a Flash..... that this coming Thursday is the 4th of July.    You can tell I'm not the party animal.  Well happy 4th to all of you that love the party, but remember - protect those strummin' and pickin' and frettin' fingers.  Be Safe!.

For those that make it through with all the celebrations.... our usual Wiki Ukulele Jam on Aliki will start at 1 pm... it looks like it will be a hot day, so that means get there early to find a parking spot close in.  And bring water.

Here's all the info:

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

2013 Song Book Ready for Download

For 2013 I have compiled all three years of books into one.  Introducing our new book... "All Together Now" Ukulele Collection.  If you are a beginner uke player as most of us are.... I've earmarked the beginning songs... and listed which ones are easiest to play by key.  For you intermediate players... we still have all those great songs from our past years.  Nothing changed much except for tossing them all together into one book... in alphabetical order and numbered.  So if you still have the older books... they should still work.

There is a not so secret "Method" to our instruction, and it is the one we will follow as we learn new songs.... so, I would also recommend to download  "First Steps to easy chords"...

If you don't have time to print out your own book... not to worry.  I'll have several books and ukuleles to lend for the day.

You'll find the downloads right here on our Ballard Beginners page.