Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Sucky first public performance

I got a chance to play a song on the ukulele at a family friend's birthday party last night. I decided to play While My Guitar Gently Weeps since I've been playing it for like a year and a half and it might be somewhat "impressive" to people who have not heard of the ukulele (which is probably most of the people there). There were about 140 guests and unfortunately I could not get my nerves under control and screwed up pretty bad in the middle. I managed to finish the song but could not tear my eyes away from the fretboard. LOL! Anyway, it was a learning experience and I think before I'm ready to play the ukulele in public I will need to figure out how to calm the nerves.

My dad got it on video and I'm posting it to Youtube despite the embarrassing mistakes in the middle. Hey, I never claimed that I'm Jake right?


Hippie Guy said...

Don't worry about it! You've got to practice performing - it's an art unto itself. At least you had your playing to worry about (seriously!). I have performed before where I feel like I didn't connect with the audience (small as it was). It was horrible - worse than messing up. I was able to go back in the hot seat for another couple of songs and felt a little better, but still... Now when I perform I'm 1) making sure I'm having fun (that's what it's all about) and 2) I do my best to make sure the audience is having fun too. Granted that last one is hard if no one can hear you, but there is always a bigger amp! At least you got to play something for people - it's great practice. Now everyone you performed for have an idea that the 'ukulele (with the 'okina (')) is more than it appears. The best you can do is better than Tiny Tim and that's what everyone on the mainland knows, so... Keep practicing and jam on!


Hippie Guy

GX9901 said...

Thanks Hippie Guy. I think my body was more nervous than my brain. LOL! I was actually looking forward to playing to an audience, but my left hand wouldn't cooperate for the first few minutes (it was shaking). Then I brain farted on the section where I screwed up.

It's all good though. I would have been happier had I played cleanly, but all in all it was a decent experience. I'd definitely like to play in public again in the future.

John Hayes said...

Based on what you said in your post, I was expecting a real train wreck. I suspect that most of the people who were listening weren't aware of the screw-ups. I'll tell you, that's one secret about performing in public-- as long as you keep going with a smile on your face & act like evrything's cool, most people in the audience miss a number of small mistakes. That's not to say we shouldn't practice diligently to make our playing as good as it can be, but it is to say that attitude & presentation carry a lot of weight with an audience. If you're interested in performing more, I'd suggest doing some smaller venues-- senior citizen centers are almost always happy to have people come & play, & you can get good experience there. Also, just playing in local jam sessions can help you get over some of the stage fright issues.

& don't be too hard on yourself!

Which uke should I bring on my next trip to Oahu???

What's the maximum you'd spend on a ukulele case for your best uke?

If you could steal one of my ukes, which one would it be???

How curly do you like your koa? (preferably on a uke)

What's the maximum number of ukes a perfectly sane person should have???

Poll: How often do you play the ukulele???

Poll: Which guitar company's approach to ukes do you prefer???

Poll: What's your favorite type of headstock???

Poll: The new basic Collings concert uke (UC-1) sells for about $1k, your reaction is: