Ukulele & Languages

Different countries,
Different cultures
one common language... the ukulele.

Archive for June, 2010

Italians are a world renowned for their sense of style and this applies to the ukulele too.

This Italian ukulele ring shaker by Sebastiano Palma is the cutest thing!

Oh and while we are in Italy, I’ve just discovered Elisabetta Spada aka Kiss and Drive

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I have decided to make a weekly tube of my ukulele World Tour findings from various areas of the globe.

Today’s globe spin will take us to my top 5 visiting countries which are the United-States, France, the United-Kingdom, Germany and Canada.

Canada  and United-States

Let’s start with a simultaneous trip  to Toronto and Cincinnati with this cool US/Canadian collaboration written by J. Kevin Wolfe for the voice of Zoe Jansen.

The song is called Fixin’ Up Something Sweet.

Thanks to Kevin for mailing me about this video.

Next comes a great fingerstyle performance by Rob aka sanfordandsong

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If you’ve been following the blog, you will know that I have been learning classical uke with Herman Vandecauter over Skype for the past 8 months.

I was therefore thrilled when Herman told me he and his wife would stop over at my place on his holiday tour.

It was certainly a very enriching weekend and I have learnt a great deal. Besides being a very skilled player of various plucked string instruments, Herman knows many stories about the history of music and has many an anecdote to tell about his 40 years of experience as a classical guitarist.

Herman took it on himself to play Tico Tico, a piece he had just finished arranging for the classical guitar, while at the same time teaching myself and a newly ukulele-converted friend to strum along on our ukes. Tico Tico was composed in 1917 by Brazilian musician and composer de Abreu.

The result is not that bad considering we learnt the piece in one afternoon. Many thanks to Herman’s wifefor filming.

Herman demonstrated his skills on both the guitar and the ukulele and seeing him play here was a truly amazing experience. He played so many complex pieces from memory,

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Once more, Al displays amazing skills in his ukulele version of Offenbach‘s Orpheus in the Underworld.

Al‘s fingers move at the pace of the Infernal Galop on the fingerboard, and I still wonder how one can move so accurately along the fretboard at such a speed. Hardly human this…

Other nice instrumentals this week include Tears wet the Tumen River by Cho / Happy Bear from South-Korea. Thanks Jeff for mailing me about this Korean player.…

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There’s always something original cooking with Amelia Robinson and this time she’s asked me if I could relay information about a ukulele event she is going to take part in, as part of the Spitalfields Music Festival, in London, UK, during the month of June 2010.

Here is her description of the event :

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