Ukulele: Beginner Basics

a.k.a. Ukulele Basics for Beginners

Announcing the first beginning ukulele workshop for the general public.
Where: Boston, Massachusetts — near the Milton T (red-line) station in Historic Lower Mills.
When: Wed 7th Feb 2018 at 7 pm. Please register to get a seat!

Walter Baker Artist Lofts at 1231 Adams Street, Boston, MA 02124 also known as “Historic Lower Mills” was formerly the administrative offices of the oldest chocolate factory in the USA.

I’ve been asked so many questions that it’s time to post blogs to answer them and / or conduct workshops to show the answers. Here are a few popular questions by newcomers to the ukulele:

  1. Where can I get my first ukulele? What kind of ukulele should I get? What else do I need? How much should I spend?
    Go to a local music instrument store and try the different sizes of ukuleles: soprano, concert, and tenor. The tuning is the same but the size differs. For adults, I’d recommend concert size. For children, soprano. Be sure to get a clip-on tuner. There’s no need for strap or extra set of strings or capo at this point – but if you can afford it, go ahead.
  2. Suppose, you’ve got your ukulele and clip-on tuner, what next?
    It’s very important to know how to hold your instrument, sit or stand and get the fundamentals right, especially for adults. You will definitely need to learn to tune your instrument.
  3. How to read strumming patterns?
  4. What to do with the right-hand?
    SHORT ANSWER: you can stroke, strum, pick, pluck, wham
  5. What to do with the left-hand: open strings, one-finger chords, two-finger chords, three-finger chords, barre chords, alternative fingerings
  6. How to read chord diagrams?
  7. How to put the two together and accompany yourself?
  8. How to sing and play at the same time?
  9. How to play different styles: pop, rock, folk, reggae, etc.
  10. How to read tablature?
  11. How to find song sheets, tutorials, and other useful stuff online?
  12. What are ukulele clubs?
  13. If I already play the guitar, is there a short cut to playing the ukulele?

I’ve outlined several workshops I’m giving in Historic Lower Mills of Boston (areas of Milton, Quincy, Dorchester, Mattapan). In late April, I will be giving an 8-week course at a local library (TBA).

To register, please fill out the GOOGLE FORM.

previous: “Super Blue Blood Moon Jam” on 31st Jan 2018, first night in 150 years of three simultaneous events (super moon, blue moon, and lunar eclipse).

next: Valentine’s Heartbreak Jam on Wed. 14th February with workshop beforehand.

For a full list of dates and song books compiled for these workshops and jam sessions, visit ALL THINGS UKULELE.


Author: BLOGmaiden

As one of the earliest bloggers (since 1999), I enjoy meeting people who embrace "out-of-the-box" thinking and fear not the unknown. I believe in collaboration for sustainability because it increases stakeholder value.

8 thoughts on “Ukulele: Beginner Basics”

  1. Hi, Are there any plans to have a beginners class again? A beginners class for Seniors hopefully? I just purchased my Ukulele and am having trouble tuning. Also, I broke a string.
    Thank you

      1. Hi Anne,

        Thank you so much for your reply. I am excited! I plan to come to the April 21st Sat. Class.
        I plan on taking the first two sessions. Do I pay ahead of time or when I get there.
        Again, thank you and looking forward to the class.


      2. Hi Evelyn, are you able to click on the Eventbrite website and choose the ones you like and pay? That will help me with reservation numbers.

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