WORLD PLAY YOUR UKULELE DAY
Every year on February 2nd, World Play Your Ukulele Day encourages music lovers to get out their four-stringed instrument and strum away. It’s also a day to get people interested in the ukulele.
The ukulele is a member of the guitar family of instruments. While the guitar has six strings, the ukulele only has four. Ukuleles are much smaller than guitars. This is why people with smaller hands choose the ukulele over the guitar. Because of its smaller size, the ukulele is also a good instrument for kids.
The four notes on the ukulele are G, C, E, and A. The word ukulele is a Hawaiian word that means “jumping flea.” It became known as that because when skillfully played, it looks like the fingers are jumping around on the strings like a flea. Even though it has a Hawaiian name, the instrument was actually brought to the island by Portuguese immigrants.
The ukulele was brought to the mainland in the early 20th century. It became a popular instrument for the jazz music of the 1920s. The “uke” as it is sometimes called, also has connections in country music history. Jimmie Rodgers and Ernest V both skillfully played the instrument. The ukulele also has its place in pop and rock music. Taylor Swift, Eddie Vedder, and George Harrison have played the ukulele during their performances.
HOW TO OBSERVE WORLD PLAY YOUR UKULELE DAY
People around the world celebrate the day under the slogan, “bring the world together, four strings at a time.” Ukulele players do this by gathering together for concerts, music festivals, and workshops. If you have been thinking about buying a ukulele, today is the perfect day to do it.
Other ways to participate:
- Watch videos featuring music played on the ukulele.
- Make it a goal to learn to play the ukulele.
- Learn about famous ukulele players including Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, Jesse Kaleihia, James Hill, Tiny Tim, and the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain.
- Listen to ukulele cover songs like “Hey Jude,” “Sunday Morning,” “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” and “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”
Share this day on social media with #WorldPlayYourUkuleleDay.
WORLD PLAY YOUR UKULELE DAY HISTORY
Mike Lynch, also known as “Ukulele Mike” established World Play Your Ukulele Day in 2011. Lynch was a school teacher who also taught people how to play the ukulele online. He believed the ukulele to be the true instrument of peace. Ukulele Mike passed away on January 2, 2018. His memory lives on through World Play Your Ukulele Day.