Learning How To Play the Uke!
Hey, y’all! How’s everything going with you? I’m not quite active for a very long while now (been buried in seemingly endless outpour of tasks, a lot of them involves not being able to go out, and walwal haha. Although that’s something that I haven’t done since I’ve started a family of my own.) Anyhoo, From that long period where I felt like I haven’t done something for myself, I actually was able to teach myself how to play the uke.
Yup! Last year (2018), we bought a concert-size ukulele (a cheap one) for my son (he’s also into music). But, being the boy who can’t keep still for 5 minutes, he’s mostly doing something else. He managed to learn a few songs and play them, though. Since he doesn’t use it all the time, I tried learning on my own, too, so I can teach him (I and my husband both play the guitar, and we taught Matt), and play another instrument, aside from the guitar.
At first, I had a hard time, of course. Having been used to the guitar’s bigger fretboard, my fingers mostly were “over-reaching”, when I try out some chords. It’s really different from the chords on the guitar, but some parts, I’d say the principle is the same. I won’t get into the nitty gritty (I’m no expert, and I don’t like being too technical–at least when playing musical instruments). To make the story short, I managed to learn from the very basic, to quite complicated pieces in a few months. It was far more easy, compared with learning how to play the guitar.
If you were wondering how I did it, it was through the good ol’ fashioned way. I’m a 90’s kid, and what best way it would be than to learn the chord chart, just like when I’m studying the guitar. There was no YouTube back then so I just use my ears. Most of the time, when I like a song or I like to know how to play a particular song, I listen first, then figure out the chords myself. That’s what I did with the ukulele.
I watched a few YouTube tutorials, like those from Cynthia Lin, UkuLenny, and of course The Ukulele Teacher. I’ve got some useful takeaways, but, I really was mostly just using my natural “reflexes” when it comes to strumming. I noticed that on any ukulele tutorial I’ve watched, the strumming pattern is being taught, which is something that I’m not really following. I just let my hand do its thing, based on how I’d like the song’s beat to come out. Well, that’s just me, I think. Overall, it was an interesting experience.
I must say that, playing the uke is really growing on me, and I’m starting to like it more :D. The portability (though I’m not sure when I’d experience it outside the house) and the ease of use are the main things that I really like about it. Although an acoustic guitar can be brought anywhere as well, the uke is much better on the portability department. Here’s one of my videos:
[This song (Fly Me To The Moon), I learned from Cynthia Lin’s tutorial.]