The ukulele has taken the world by storm, showing up in primetime shows, school music programs and possibly even your home — according to some reports, for the third straight year, it's the most popular instrument given as a gift.
The ukulele is such an accessible instrument that it’s no wonder people are turning to it as opposed to guitar or piano; it's easy to hold, and as far as instruments go, it's much less complicated than most, allowing people the ability to play a lot of their favorite songs almost immediately.
If you’ve been thinking about playing, here’s why you should stop putting it off and get started today.
While there are only a few instruments that allow people to sing and play songs at the same time, which is why most people decide to learn the ukulele, there are even fewer of those instruments that can be bought for under $100.
But many beginner ukuleles can be purchased brand new for under $50, a ridiculous value considering many people spend that on a dinner that isn’t even that fancy.
You should know that at this price point, ukuleles don't sound world-class, but beginners typically aren't missing out on anything and even seasoned musicians have a low-risk way to see how much they like playing.
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There are two basic tools you need to play thousands of ukulele songs: an up and down strum and chords from the key of C, which are C, F, G and A minor (commonly shown as Am).
The great thing about the people who make ukulele song arrangements is that it seems that as much as possible, they try to put songs into the key of C, which is the easiest key to play in on the instrument.
In fact two of its main chords require players to use only one finger, and while the other two are a bit more difficult, they can be mastered fairly quickly by concentrating on switching to them as many times as possible.
Strumming can be done by using your thumb or index finger and grazing all the strings downward and then doing the same thing in reverse.
From there, it's about searching for songs and connecting its chords with your up and down strum, never changing a chord on an upstroke and learning any new chords, if any, as they come up in songs.
The most complete song resource is ultimate-guitar.com, and it even allows you to take any song and change the chords to the key of C (called transposing chords) right there on the site.
It's free to use on a desktop or laptop, but unfortunately, to use it on mobile, you need to purchase the app.
Surprisingly, many guitar players don’t know that guitar knowledge translates directly to the ukulele and vice versa. The ukulele is tuned GCEA, which is equivalent to four high strings on guitar (DGBE) if you put a capo on the fifth fret.
The ukulele is such a great instrument because it allows people an accessible way to have a lifetime of accompanying their favorite songs. Plus, the investment to get started can be very low if you get an entry-level instrument.
If you've been thinking about learning to play the ukulele, we offer flexible lessons scheduling and even one-time workshops that can help you get on the right path if you choose to learn on your own.
For more information about our services, please visit our lessons page, or send us a message.
PDF eBook — $4.99
This 10-step, straight-to-the-point guide shows you everything you need to play and sing songs on the ukulele. With these instructions, most people can start actually playing songs they want to play in less than a few hours. The book also contains next steps for getting as good as you probably ever need to be.
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