Thursday, 21 July 2011

Woohoo! A Blue Ukulele!

I bought one! Can you believe it? When we got back from the concert last night I was really pleading my case for having one and learning to play. Spiderman was saying it was a waste of money as it would only gather dust. Like a child begging for a pet that they promised on their life to care for. You know the story. “Please let me have a gerbil. I’ll feed it and give it water and play with it and clean out the cage! P-p-p-please!” and the parent relents and 3 weeks later that parent is cleaning out the gerbil cage and muttering swear words under their breath or worse there is a dead gerbil who died of neglect from being cared for by an ADD kid. I am determined to prove him wrong. I REALLY want to do this.

So yesterday at school I was wistfully saying that I wanted one and a co-worker said she had bought her daughter one in a shop right down the road from where we live for £17.99! It was FATE. I was sure of it. As soon as I checked with Spiderman to see if I needed to wait until after payday I toddled on down there in the pouring rain (so you know I *really* wanted it) and bought a gorgeous royal blue uke! I also got a cool digital tuner to help me keep it in tune.

I can do a few chords but it still doesn’t sound right (Spiderman insinuated that was because it was a ukulele) but I am going to get my musical mate Clare who plays the mandolin to help me with strumming and finger placement.

In the mean time here is the history of the ukulele for anyone who cares. Happy playing!

The Ukulele is a musical instrument, which many people associate with Hawaii, but it originally was a Portuguese musical instrument, called the braguinha, having been taken to Hawaii in the latter part of the 19th. century, it soon became part of the Hawaiian culture. It was the Hawaiians that gave this musical instrument the name Ukulele (UKU meaning 'Flea' and LELE meaning 'to dance') In the early part of the 20th.century the ukulele became very popular in America. It was about this time that the ukulele-banjo was invented, due in part to the popularity of the banjo, and the lack of volume obtained from the soprano ukulele. The ukulele-banjo or banjo-ukulele or even banjulele, as they are known, were made popular by the English comedian George Formby, who even today is the person who most people associate with the banjo-ukulele. By the second half of the 20th. century the popularity of the ukulele had declined. Today the popularity of the ukulele is kept alive by the efforts and enthusiasm of a few people worldwide that still listen to, and play the ukulele.

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