Bayside Ukes at the Hills Ukulele Festival 2019

Bayside Ukes had a fun day on Sunday performing at the Hills Ukulele Festival, held at the Emerald Primary School in Emerald, Victoria.  The weather was perfect, with sunshine and a light mountain breeze.  It was a pleasant drive through the hills and lots of people had made the trip to attend the event.

Bayside Ukes members enjoyed performing nine songs on the main stage for an appreciative audience. Thank you to everyone for your hard work with the rehearsals and for your good humour.

The festival was very relaxed and it was enjoyable seeing the other groups who were programmed throughout the day.  There was great food and coffee and a ukulele market place that was very popular.

Thank you Dan and Emerald Primary School for hosting a wonderful festival.  We had a wonderful time and will definitely put it in our calendar for next year.

Kat

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Misty Mountain Hop Where the Ukuleles Fly

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If the bustle and stress of city life is getting you down there is nothing like a change of scenery to refresh the spirit, especially were there are multitudes of ukuleles. That’s a good reason to head to the Dandenong Ranges for the Hills Ukulele Festival next weekend.

On Sunday May 19 at 11am Bayside Ukes will be playing on the main stage at Emerald Primary School. For more information see the previous post on this website.

Here’s a song to get you in the mood for a trip to the hills.

We’ll be packing our ukes for the misty mountains, up to hills where the ukulele spirit flies! Come and join us.

Kat

More War Songs on Ukulele

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Tomorrow in Australia and New Zealand is Anzac Day when we remember those who gave their lives in wars.  To commemorate this important event here are some song covers on ukulele that deal with various aspects of war.

The following songs were all written about the Vietnam conflict and are still relevant today.

I-Feel-Like-I’m Fixin’-to-Die Rag, by Country Joe and the Fish, with it’s wonderful use of dark humour, was made famous by their performance at the Woodstock Festival in 1969. The following cover sounds great on the baritone ukulele.

Pink Floyd’s Us and Them, from the album Dark Side of the Moon, is a powerful  and haunting song about war. The following version has been adapted for the ukulele.

New Order’s song Love Vigilantes (1985) about a soldier longing to return to his family has been covered by other artists, but none are as poignant as this raw and emotional ukulele version. I think it says it all.

Ukuleles, since the beginning of the last century, have become a popular instrument for those in the Services and when we play some commemorative songs on Anzac Day we can remember them.

Kat

Ukulele Songs About Autumn

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Autumn in Melbourne

It is finally autumn in Melbourne after a long, long summer and the hottest March on record. Time for some ukulele songs that reflect summer’s passing. The following were all performed in Australia.

Probably the most famous song for this time of the year is Autumn Leaves. Here is a Jazzy version sung by Misty Henderson accompanied by ukulele and band at Uke Mullum in the northern NSW town of Mullumbimby.

A wonderful rock song with an Autumn theme and references to Lord of the Rings is Led Zeppelin’s Ramble On. Hope you enjoy this fun and gutsy version by Adelaide group, The Wheatsheaf Ukulele Collective.

Finally, one of the most beautiful Autumn songs is Harvest Moon by Neil Young. This delightful version is performed by Californian Dani Joy overlooking Sydney Harbour on a lovely day in May. Hard to believe it is Autumn in some parts of Australia.

Whether it’s Autumn or Spring where you are, it is fun to play songs that reflect the seasons. I’m sure you have your favourites.

Kat

The Big Ukulele Syndicate: No Pop

An exciting ukulele band from Grenoble, France, The Big Ukulele Syndicate, fill their performances with movement, fun and fantastic ukulele playing. Check out the following video and you will get the picture. They are so entertaining.

Their facebook page is in French, but here is the link for those who can read the language.

Kat

Ukulele Tutorial: To Love somebody

It’s been very hot down under with too many bushfires. You can smell the smoke in Melbourne. Time for a cool and calming song.

The following tutorial, given in a picturesque winter setting by Bosco of Ukulele Cheats, demonstrates how to play the beautiful To Love Somebody by the Bee Gees, with lots of playing tips. Love the way he can still play in freezing conditions without his fingers going numb.

Great to see so many members back on board last week. We had a fun session revisiting songs and trying a new one.  Looking forward to Tuesday night.

Kat

Shake it: A Helpful Strumming Lesson for Beginners

Getting into the rhythm of a strumming pattern is something that challenges many beginners. The following video demonstrates a useful technique using an egg shaker to improve your strumming. A shaker that fits onto one of the fingers of your playing hand would also work.

I also like to use a finger shaker when playing with a group as it adds another dimension to the overall sound. Although don’t overdo this. One or two shakers in a group are enough. You don’t want to sound like a hail storm.

Kat