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Tag Archives: Stuart Fuchs

New Uke For Xmas (2019)

If you’ve got a new ukulele for Christmas or are considering taking up playing one, you’ll soon find there are lots of on-line resources to help you, whatever your level:

Day & Summary Day & Summary
01 –  Helmut Bickel – Fingerstyle 02 – New Uke For Xmas – Useful sources
03 – Bernadette’s 30 Day Challenge 04 – Songs & Songbooks – eg MUJ
05 – James Hill’s Ukulele Way 06 – Danno Sullivan – Play It Daily
07 – Cynthia Lin – Tutorials 08 – Phil Doleman’s Two Minute Tips
09 – Samantha Muir – Classical Uke 10 – Ten Thumbs Productions – Tutorials
11 – Richard Hefner – ezFolk Lessons 12 – Stuart Fuchs  – Tips & Tutorials
  • Have a general look around this website, as we pick out a wide selection of our favourite tools & tips, on-line uke lessons, songbooks, chords, music theory, forums, equipment & other website resources. In particular, my musings on what helped me when I first got my uke as a complete beginner may prove a useful summary if you’re totally new to playing.
  • Joining a local group is always a boost – whether you are a beginner, improver or expert player. We’re a very friendly club based in Lewisham which meets every Tuesday for free jamming sessions. Everyone is welcome & we pride ourselves from having members from all over London, Kent & Surrey. We’re back strumming in the New Year from Tue 7 Jan 2020. Contact us for more details.
  • If you aren’t near Lewisham, do check out the Mighty Ukulele for Londonwide gigs, events & UK clubs or Uke Hunt’s extensive clubs & groups listings covering  UK & Ireland; Europe; USA & Canada and Australia & New Zealand for a local group.
  • If you need advice on buying an instrument, Barry Maz has a wealth of independent reviews on Got A Ukulele as well as a schedule of uke festivals and other handy info to help get you started.

Good luck & happy strumming!

Jeanette

 

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UK Christmas Number Ones – 1965

Two for the price of one today, with The Beatles’ double A-sided single Day Tripper and We Can Work It Out, released on 3 Dec 1965, the same day as their Rubber Soul album.

Day Tripper  – tutorial & free songsheet from Stu FuchsWe Can Work It Out – chord melody video lesson from Craig Williams and chords from Ukulele Cheats.

Here’s Toast Garden:

And NewUkeNewYork:

More info on Day Tripper & We Can Work It Out Wikipedia entries.

 

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UK Christmas Number Ones – 1964

Fittingly, this year saw The Beatles top the charts with their eighth British single, I Feel Fine. Here we have a lesson from Stuart Fuchs if you wish to learn the riff and a performance from The Re-entrants (Phil Doleman & Ian Emmerson):

More info on Wikipedia.

 

 

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PLUCking Ukes – Rhythm Without Blues 2

It’s always more difficult to play the slowest numbers, such as Abilene – which we play in a much more leisurely fashion than the original – because you have to be very accurate with your tempo and there is always a temptation to start speeding up!

Spending just a few minutes a day for a few weeks working on your strumming (eg with a metronome, to a steady backing track or using other rhythm tools) will soon improve your sense of timing.

We’ve discussed this previously in an earlier PLUCking Ukes – Rhythm Without Blues entry. This introduced some useful rhythm exercises from Rhan Wilson’s All In Good Time site, which are always worth recapping.

Several of the music theory sites we’ve covered contain fun rhythm games – a good one to try out is Theta Music Trainer.

If you’re confident with those, moving on you could try some of the rhythm tutorials from Stuart Fuchs. Stu has a number of lessons concentrating on different strums and rhythms, such as ones from his ‘Uke-a-Billy‘ rockabilly collection, which are suited to rock ‘n’ roll numbers – including straight strums, shuffle, backbeat, Bo-Diddley beat (aka clave) & boogie. He also explains how to play many different rhythmic styles in his playalongs, including swing, rhumba, calypso, boom-ditty, funky, reggae & more.

Get out your metronome (Google brings up its free one or there are plenty of free apps available) and try out Stu’s backbeat lesson:

 

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Twelve Days Of Ukemas – Day Twelve

Stuart Fuchs is another great performer I found early on with a clear & relaxed teaching style, predictably through some of his Beatle posts. He plays a wide variety of styles which reflect the versatility of the uke – here are links to a few YouTubes with him playing on a couple of road trips (a spot of Bob Marley up a mountain top and Billy Joel in the desert); concerts showcasing jazz medleys and stunt ukulele; followed by some more sedate Bach and Brazilian pieces.

I was lucky enough to attend two of his workshops at the 2018 Ukulele Festival of Scotland (UFoS) – Ukulele Zen (giving practice tips, such as how to play more easily without too much tension) and Fingerpicking Skills – & they were really interesting and useful.

He has lots of free stuff in his store (look in the FREE TABS section – most have videos to accompany them in his YouTube Channel); several different YouTube themes (eg Beginners’ Ukulele; Ask Stu Feature; Ukulele Lessons (weekly)Ukulele Circus Skills; Rockabilly for Uke (containing Rock & Roll numbers – to support the book of the same name); Chord Solo Tutorials (supporting another book); Blues; Jazz; Gypsy Swing etc); some good books (such as Rockabilly for Uke – aka Uke-a-billy) and he also offers Skype lessons.

(Stuart has recently set up a Patreon page and is busy adding extra content there from as little as $2 per month, for those looking to obtain more detailed lessons and techniques.)

Here’s one of his Beatle medleys:

 

I hope you’ve found this short Twelve Days Of Ukemas series informative. People learn differently: whilst some prefer dipping in randomly, others fare better with a more structured approach, or find paying for a formal course or membership motivates them to progress better. With any luck, we’ve introduced you to some new sites and tutorial sources to help you vary and structure your practice so you can improve your uke skills for the New Year!

Jeanette

 

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PLUCking Ukes – Ten Minute Practice Tips

Stu Fuchs (aka Stukulele / Ukulele Dojo) is doing a new series of beginners’ videos, starting with the basics & progressing as he teaches his latest class. He says these are for anyone who wants a refresher or check to see if they need to get out of any bad habits they’ve picked up whilst playing. This first one covers strumming; keeping rhythm; accenting the backbeat; fretting chords without too much tension; & a simple strumalong to Jamaica Farewell. In Week Two he introduces 3/4 time & plays a long-distance duet with you of Amazing Grace.

There are also plenty of other interesting items & tutorials on his website, at all levels, so do have a look round.

 

 

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