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Private Ukulele Lessons in London For Adults

Will you come to my house and teach me how to play the ukulele?

At the moment, we don’t teach privately, only in group situations in the pub. Sadly, we don’t have any vacancies for new one-to-one/private students or the time to travel around London to teach at various people’s houses during the evening. We get lots of requests from lovely people, like you, who contact us for private lessons, but they generally live quite far away from one another. We may consider running one-to-one clinics for ex-students to help with specific techniques in the future, if there is sufficient demand for these types of things, but for now, it’s probably easiest if we just say ‘no’ we don’t teach privately at all.

BUT, all is not lost… Please read on:

You should come along to learn how to play the ukulele in a group. You’ll play your first song in an hour, even with no prior musical experience. We teach adults, in groups, after work in the evenings. It’s masses of fun, so you’ll get out of the house and meet other adults. You’re likely to make a few friends and you will pick up and play a popular song on the ukulele within an hour. The ukulele is a social instrument, and our classes are fun, so you’ll be happy to be there with other people playing and singing pop songs on your ukulele.

We hope to see you at one of our 4-week ukulele courses very soon, and we hope this will be a valuable investment, 8 hours of your time with us, plus your at-home practice in-between classes.

 

Uke Lounge 1

Thank you SO much to those who came, for making that first Uke Lounge Workshop a fun one! If you didn’t make it. Feel free to have a crack at these songs, and I hope you’ll join us on Wednesday! There’s a bit for everyone, whether you’re just learning chords, want to practice your strumming, or picking, or singing. It’s all here. Want to come along this week?

 

Want to see what happened in Uke Lounge 1? Here’s the audio. My version of Enjoy the Silence, and your version of Enjoy the Silence, if you’d like to play along? Here’s the (click to enlarge) song sheet:
Enjoy The Silence
Also, here’s my version of Country House. I didn’t record the guys playing it, but I’ll happily record that at Uke Lounge 2. Want to join us?
 

Uke Lounge

We (Andy, Lorraine and Nick) have been approached by lots of fellow ukers who want a chance to play in a context somewhere between a workshop and a jam session. Some brave folk are even eager to perform — in public! We know that workshops are great for continued practice and learning to play and sing together in some parts, and we all know how much fun a jam session at Ukulele Wednesdays can be; but we agree that it is time to take your feedback on board, and try something new.

We’ve secured space at The Prince of Wales Feathers and we’re really excited to pull this concept together. The idea is we enjoy a good meal then crack on into a session in which we’ll learn to both play and sing in parts, so we can perform a song as a group. Think the skill development of a workshop meets the fun group atmosphere of a jam night, with the goal of shaping a team of finely tuned musicians over 7 evenings of fun social dinners and a structured jam/boozy practice.

The details are below and we hope to see you there!

Read all about it and see all the upcoming Wednesday dates.

Is the ukulele just a fad?

Someone asked me lately: “Is the ukulele just a fad? Are people getting bored with it now?”

I replied: “Is the cup of tea a fad? Are people getting bored with it now?”

OK, that may have been a tad on the facetious side but it got my view across very quickly, without me having to explain my reasoning or feelings about the issue. Since you’re here now, and I’m feeling a bit more reflective and maybe even a bit serious, I’ll tell you instead.

In short, no. I don’t believe that the ukulele is a fad. Yes, it’s experienced something of a renaissance in recent years, but I believe that the ukulele is an inclusive instrument, which allows impatient people like me to play a song they know within an hour, rather than having to spend years becoming accomplished enough to make a song sound familiar to others. I believe that the ukulele is a wonderful first instrument. It opens music up to those who believe that they are ‘unmusical’ (I don’t believe that anybody is unmusical, only that some people are more encouraged and then become more committed in their childhood) since millions of adults didn’t benefit from a good musical education in childhood, many of them yearn to be able to play something, but lack the time to spend years catching up with people who began piano or guitar as children. Many adults want to play an instrument and participate in a song with others quickly. The ukulele gives them that. It should stay firmly on the musical map.

The ukulele was my first instrument. For a few years it was my only instrument. Without it I’d be a mere consumer of music, instead of a participant. Nowadays, my very being and sense of self is based upon playing music. My existence before I was able to play anything was unfulfilled and sad. OK. That’s not technically true, but there is a nugget of truth in it. I feel that I’ve grown as a person through learning and committing to music, and that love would never have flourished without the ukulele. The seed was planted and now my life is very different. Whilst not everyone has the same experience that I did, most people find playing and singing with others therapeutic.

Ukulele Wednesdays, and then Learn To Uke’s very success is based on group ukulele playing and singing. I think that meeting up and playing ukulele in a group is a great thing. It’s a way to spend time with others, make music, forget about everything else and relieve stress. I believe that somewhere, very deep within the human psyche we have a need to play and sing with others. It’s ethereal and can take you off to another place, even if it does sound somewhere between a football chant and a cockney knees up at times. The point, is not to be the next One Direction, but to connect with others in a fundamental way. Years ago, people used to sing together frequently, whether they were; at Irish gatherings, the folk drop ins where lots of people bring an instrument and join in, or at Church, or around the piano with the family at home.  It was a way of life that isn’t seen often today, and I think our collective consciousness needs it. I don’t see any other instruments bringing as many people together so inclusively, so I feel that there should always be a place in our society for ukulele playing and singing. It’s a pity that it has been overused by advertisers, and the media. I hope that it has been, or does become realised as a seriously inclusive instrument, fun to play in a group with others and is not dismissed as easily as Jedward hair.

Jedward Hair