Uke Song (Contemplating the Inevitable Return of the Tonawanda Kardex In Glory)

October 28, 2010 10:05 AM

A little song on ukulele and a few other instruments. This was recorded last night in one take per track, improvised around a basic chord structure.

I've been trying to teach myself to play the uke for a little while so that I can teach my son to play. So far, though, I'm sort of stuck playing it like it's a tiny guitar. Lots of little noises because I'm not used to sitting still with a uke in front of a microphone. The slide mandolin was the trickiest part, for some reason.

posted by The World Famous (4 comments total)

The uke here blends really nicely with the other instruments. Forgive me for asking, I've never played a uke before, but how is it not exactly like a tiny guitar?

Also you've managed to capture the percussive boom of the upright bass quite nicely. It lends a certain thump to the overall mix that helps keep the track from feeling too "improvisational", if that makes sense.
posted by abc123xyzinfinity at 10:00 PM on October 31, 2010

The uke here blends really nicely with the other instruments.

Thanks. That was a bit of a surprise, actually, as it didn't take much tweaking. I recently set up my recording gear in a new room and this is the first recording I've made with a mic in the new room. Given the relatively low volume of the uke and the fact that I didn't put much thought into mic placement, I expected it to turn out muddy.

exactly like a tiny guitar?

Fewer strings, different (but similar) tuning, shorter scale. But mostly, people just don't seem to play uke like it's a little guitar. I always feel like I'm cheating somehow.

Since the top three strings are the same intervals as the top three on a guitar and the bottom string is the same interval as the corresponding guitar string, but an octave higher, you can just play it like it's a guitar with 4 strings, as long as you compensate for the one that's an octave up. But it always seems like I'm doing it "wrong" when I play that way (bending strings, etc.) rather than playing the way that uke players seem to usually play.
posted by The World Famous at 11:35 AM on November 1, 2010

I really like this one. Thanks!
posted by Post-it Goat at 10:35 PM on November 2, 2010

So nice! I'd like to listen to a full album of this while drawing drawings.
posted by smirkyfodder at 4:25 PM on November 4, 2010

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