Strum Fun Workshop with Ukulelezaza!


We had the great pleasure of a visit and a strum fun workshop from Ukulelezaza.

If you’ve not come across Remco Houtman-Janssen before, then you should have! He’s a world class player, who’s played in many Hawaiian bands, and regularly plays live at global ukulele festivals.  He paid us a visit from Belgium last Thursday, and ran a workshop at the Royal George.

Here are are the details of the strum fun workshop that he ran:

As a master of the right hand and a well experienced teacher, Zaza’s workshop on strumming techniques is a must-attend for anyone interested in traditional syncopated rhythm techniques, like the triplet, split stroke and swing jazz. One finger, two fingers, three fingers… You will leave this workshop with a few quintessential ukulele strums up your sleeve. Duration 75 minutes.

Some of the students said:

‘Remco is a great teacher and player. I leant a lot from this workshop and really enjoyed his concert that followed after the workshop. He has a wonderful collection of very old (and battered) uke’s of all shapes and sizes that he uses in his act. If you enjoy playing ‘jazz style’ numbers I can heartily recommend his book and DVD ‘happy days are here again’ which you can get from his website: These alumni workshops are a great idea and I am really looking forward to the new ones.’
– Nigel Karney

‘Absolutely brilliant workshop, one you need to make sure is in your Diary. Zaza has a unique was of teaching which can make any Ukulele at any level sound beautiful. He has so much experience to offer, and if you are lucky he will show you what he can do with a wide range of his own Ukulele’s.’
– Maria Cox

How Can I Use The Ukulele For Stress Relief?

What are the Stress Relieving Benefits Of The Ukulele?

It’s long been said that playing the ukulele is great for stress relief. Many people say that it’s impossible not to smile whilst you’re holding a ukulele. As someone who has definitely frowned whilst holding a ukulele, I wouldn’t necessarily agree with that, but I would say that if you start out feeling bad, it can cheer you up no end, whether you’re playing on your own, or my preference, playing with others. It could be used as a form of mindfulness, as you need to concentrate and be in the moment when you’re playing the ukulele, rather than thinking about whatever the stressy parts of your day are. Also, as you usually sing along whilst you accompany yourself – playing the ukulele, you normally always feel better after singing and enjoying playing the music that you enjoy, than you did before you started. Singing on it’s own makes you take longer breaths, and it makes your head resonate in a pleasurable way. The ukulele is also great for making you concentrate on your fine motor skills, whether you have good fine motor control or not, it’s a great workout for the fingers (apart from those callouses) and it’ll take your mind off whatever it was that was bothering you when you started playing and singing.

In short, we agree with Peanuts:

Peanuts Ukulele

Peanuts want to issue all babies with a ukulele


And this lovely ukulele:

You Make Me Smile

This lovely ukulele make us smile


The ‘stress busting’ benefits has been shown in all of our classes, so we’re glad that we can offer you some light relief!

Postman Pat playing the Ukulele?

Postman Pat on the ukulele?

Ukulele fever seems to have taken the whole world by storm, as even our Children’s Entertainment icon, Postman Pat is now playing one!  Good that we can add him to our list of famous ukulele players, including:

  • Amy Winehouse
  • Eddie Vedder
  • Florence Welsh
  • Frank Skinner
  • George Clooney
  • Iz
  • Jake Shimabukuro
  • James Hill
  • Jason Robards
  • JJ from Skins
  • Joe Brown
  • Jon Bon Jovi
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt
  • Kermit the Frog
  • King Blues
  • Marilyn Monroe
  • Matthew Morrison
  • Neil Armstrong (Yes, the first man in space)
  • Noah and the Whale
  • Paul McCartney
  • Peter Sellers
  • Ryan Gosling
  • Steve Martin
  • Tom Hanks
  • Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain
  • Warren Buffet
  • Will Smith
  • Zooey Deschanel

Yes, that’s right.  All those people have done artistic things with ukuleles.  See proof for yourself, on video right here.

Mister Ukulele – our new model!

Mister Ukulele, or Mr. Uke for short has been hanging around for a while, just waiting for an opportunity to shine.  And now, here he is:

Mr Ukulele

Mr Uke!


He’s going to be popping up all over the place in future.  In our new YouTube Uke tips, news, reviews, and playalong songs.  We’re going to take him out on tour, and he’ll meet a whole bunch of awesome people.  Like him?

This time next year, you could make him an amazing ukulele cake like this one:

Ukulele Cake

Mmm Yummy!


We love that cake so much, you could make one for all of us, and we’d be over the moon!