Sunday, February 27, 2011


Maybe it was the fact that the start date for my Mya Moe concert is approaching soon, but maybe a couple of weeks ago I felt a jolt of motivation to learn some new songs on the ukulele (kind of bad to have UAS as a source of motivation to learn new stuff. Gotta change that...). Having been listening to Jake Shimabukuro's Peace Love Ukulele quite a bit lately, it's only natural that I wanted to learn some of the new stuff from the album. Bohemian Rhapsody has always been on my wish list to learn, but I have not really gave it a shot until just a few days ago because it seems too difficult (trying to piece it together now, realizing that the difficulty is not in the technical aspect, but rather how long the song is). So I tackled Bring Your Adz. This song seemed to be manageable for my playing level but while I was able to learn it fairly quickly, I still have a long ways to go before I can play it smoothly enough. While browsing Youtube videos to learn Adz (my primary way of learning new songs these days), I saw a related Hallelujah (Jake's version) video. I viewed a couple of those and decided to try and learn it. To my pleasant surprise it was pretty easy and I was able to play it reasonably well in a few days. I had some time on my hands yesterday so I decided to shoot a video of this song. As far as number of takes go to get a presentable video, it wasn't too bad. So here is Hallelujah.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

New wood

Char from Mya-Moe emailed me yesterday regarding the wood set for my concert ukulele. She had found another set that she thought was closer to what I had originally asked for and sent me a picture of it. This set of myrtle had some really nice curl, more so than the set I had picked out before, so I went for it. I love me some curly wood, and this one should be pretty good looking. The uke is scheduled to start around the end of March, so it's definitely closing in. I guess I need to have a few songs ready (just learned "Bring Your Adz" & "Hallelujah" and about to tackle "Bohemian Rhapsody") so I can make some videos with it soon after it arrives.

Here's what the wood set looks like:

Saturday, February 19, 2011

What was that about UAS again??...?

So much for my contention that I don't have any UAS right now. I browsed the Ukulele Underground forum briefly today and read a post about the Epiphone Les Paul ukulele. That was all it took for me to place a pre-order for one of these babies with Sam Ash. Pretty crazy. Then again, it is only $100. To me, just the fact that this is a Les Paul shaped ukulele with an Epiphone logo on it makes it worth the Benjamin, even if it sounds like something that should only be purchased by clueless tourists on Waikiki. I've always loved the Les Paul shape, and have once owned a Kiwaya K-Wave just because of its shape. I've also lusted after the Earnest LaPaula since basically when I started playing the ukulele. So to have an "official" Les Paul ukulele is pretty cool, I think. It is supposedly coming out in March, so hopefully I'll get to see how good or bad it is. But whether it's a decent beater uke or a piece of crap, I will be able to say I own a real Les Paul uke! That's gotta be worth something right???....ok, maybe not, but it's still cool!

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Whoa! It's been quite a long time since I've posted here. Cobwebs have definitely been growing in the ghetto!

Well, since the last holiday season, I guess my attention have been quite divided. Besides having 3 kids to handle, I've also been getting back into a couple of other hobbies. I didn't get any new ukuleles for Christmas, but I got myself (people my age basically use Christmas as an excuse to buy stuff for themselves. At least I do, har!) other stuff that occupied my attention for the last couple of months. Ukulele kind of taken a backseat in terms of me learning new stuff and following what going on in the ukulele world. My temporary UAS binge (Lanikai zebra and Kala pocket) totally went away, and while I busted the ukulele to play most days, there were a few days where I didn't even get around to playing the ukulele. I still enjoyed playing the ukulele, but it was kind of a "time away" from my ukes. I think that's good though, because I know ukulele is pretty much in my blood, and I will always be interested in it and come back to it.

I've been listening to Jake's new CD in my car fairly often of late, and sure enough, I got an itch to learn something from that disc. I know I would like to play his version of Bohemian Rhapsody someday, but it's really long and probably not that easy to learn, so the next song I really wanted to learn was Bring Your Adz. I have no idea what "Adz" means, but the tune is pretty cool. I started messing with the opening section last week and kind of figured out how it was played. Then a couple of days ago, I decided to tackle the song hard and dug up a few Youtube videos to attempt to learn it. It isn't a hard song to learn, so I more of less got all the parts down. But it is pretty hard to execute (for me anyway), so now it will just take some time to refine it the best I can. I guess there is no shortage of songs I would like to learn, sometimes the motivation is there, and sometimes there isn't. I'm definitely feeling the urge to learn a few new songs now, so hopefully I'll have something to share soon.

On the UAS front, although I have not felt any urges to get new ukes, there is one on the horizon. That is the Mya Moe I ordered last year. I think it was slated to start in March and be completed by April. Mya Moe appears to be the most "on-time" builder around, so I'm thinking I'll be getting the uke sometime in April. I hope it doesn't trigger another UAS binge, but I guess we'll see about that.

Anyway, all is well. I still love the ukulele very much, although I just don't have as much time or things I could share here right now. Hopefully I will continue to be able to put of semi-useful or halfway entertaining stuff here.

Until next time, I leave you with a quick picture of the myrtle wood set I recently choose for the Mya Moe:

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: