It’s hard to believe we are at another year’s end! I hope you all are enjoying the holiday season, whatever you may celebrate (or not celebrate, as the case may be). As for me, I’ve enjoyed baking cookies and singing carols with my son, getting out for walks in our brisk winter air, and – of course – planning for new ukulele classes in Portland and online!
As we prepare for a new year, I am reminded of the many new beginnings music offers us every day. I often tell my students music is a journey of “Choose Your Own Adventure”. There are so many elements of music to explore, you never really lose the feeling of being a beginner. And yet, no matter how long we go between practice sessions, the music is always there, ready and waiting whenever we return. Learning music is a relentless process, but I also like to think of it as relentlessly forgiving …
You may recall I took a break these past several months to work on my YouTube channel and prepare some self-paced online courses. I’m excited to return to weekly ukulele classes in Portland next month, both in person and online! Here are some short descriptions and links to get you started:
101: Ukulele For Beginners
Did you splurge on an ukulele over the holidays, or receive one as a gift? Or have you had one in the closet you are ready to dust off? This 8-week class will cover / review all the basics you need to know for early success in your ukulele playing.
ONLINE: I don’t currently have an online offering for this class – are you interested? Please fill out this 2-question survey to help me form an online cohort! 🙂
Theme Study: Ukulele Motown!
Stop! In the name of love! What’s goin’ on? I heard it through the grapevine…
I often teach a themed class each term that allows us to explore a certain genre / era / artist through the lens of our ukulele playing. This term, it’s all about the music of Motor City (Detroit) in the 1960s! We’ll learn popular favorites (referenced above…) and expand our musical skills and technique in the process.
ONLINE: Wednesday mornings or evenings (Pacific time), January 25 – March 22 live on Zoom. Also available as an email course. Click here to register through my website.
Instrumental: Ukestra / Ukulele Melodies
I’ve recently begun teaching more instrumental music for ukulele, both in person and online, as well. Because the pieces we play translate so differently when playing all together versus online, I offer two different workshops. However, the material often overlaps. In both cases, we focus on learning notes on the fretboard, how to read music notation and/or tablature, and maintaining good tone as our ukuleles sing!
IN PERSON UKESTRA: January 10 Intro to Ukestra Workshop, then 1st Tuesdays of the month at Artichoke Music in Portland, Oregon. Click here to register for Intro to Ukestra Workshop. Registration for regular monthly sessions open soon, so save the dates: February 7, March 7, April 4, May 2 and June 6.
ONLINE MELODIES WORKSHOPS: Saturday mornings (Pacific time), January 14, February 11 and March 11, live on Zoom and recorded for later review. Click here to register through my website.
Public Health Precautions
We here in Portland continue to live with not just one but various respiratory illnesses during our winter months. I’ve been to a variety of music events with different policies regarding masks. It’s been tough to decide on policies and precautions for myself and my own in person events, but I’ve decided that, in weekly classes and Ukestra workshops, masks will be very welcome, but not required. I’m still working with Artichoke Music to determine dates for our in person Ukulele Jam, which I’m hopeful to restart, as well. If and when we jam in person again, masks *will* be required, since we will be singing and projecting in a larger group of folks, less able to socially distance.
I realize this may affect your choice regarding participation at in person classes and workshops. If you’re at all hesitant, I encourage you to try one of the online offerings mentioned above.
Let’s make some music!
Thanks so much for your patience as I got all the logistics squared away here. Can’t wait to make music with you again in 2023 – I look forward to seeing you at an ukulele class in Portland and/or online soon!