35 Things You’re Missing

The amount of ukulele stuff on the net is swelling rapidly. I spend most of my day trying to keep up and I still miss loads. So here’s a list of uke goodies you may have missed because they are nowhere near as popular as they should be. If there’s something you think I should be made aware of, please do leave a comment.

Ten Ukulele Sites That Aren’t in the Top 25 But Should Be

Taken from the Top 50 Ukulele Sites

1. Ukulele Languages

Armelle’s world tour of ukulele is only just outside the top 25. She has a great range of non-English and English language videos alike.

2. Humble Uker Ramblings

You haven’t noticed how often ‘Via Humble Uker’ turns up on the Saturday UkeTube?

3. Play Ukulele by Ear

Jim D’Ville travels the world interviewing ukulelists about their approach to music and provides invaluable information about the most widely used chord progressions.

4. Ukulele Dav
5. Descordes et Dubois

Two French sites with some excellent tabs.

6. The Backwards Ukulele Player

Michael has a real knack for finding great old news stories and pictures.

7. Ukulele Secrets

A relatively new blog from UkuleleTim promising to teach you, “how to play ukulele like a badass.”

8. Ken Middleton
9. Ukulele Bartt

Two ukers offering tabs and playing advice on their sites.

10. Ukulele Brasil

A few years back I’d get emails from Brazilians unable to find a ukulele amongst the cavaquinhos. Good to see that’s changing.

10 Posts Fewer Than 500 People Have Seen This Year

1. Rod Thomas – Same Old Lines
2. Ukulelezo – Optional Accessory

How quickly people forget, eh. Rod Thomas was the 2008 Ukulele Video of the Year and Ukulelezo was the 2008 Bushman Contest Winner.

3. The Fall – Theme From Sparta FC

Let me explain the story of the Fall-feit: I posted I’m Yours, against my better judgment, to stop the cavalcade of requests. Less than two hours after it went live, I was being taken, unconscious, to hospital. Realising I had angered the indie gods, I pledged to do a post on the most indie band there ever was whenever I posted something suspiciously popular.

4. The Elected – At Home (Time Unknown)

I only posted this because I had a bunch of requests and now no one reads it. Typical!

5. Kate Micucci Interview

If you’re ever wondering why I don’t do many interview posts anymore it’s because, no matter how famous the interviewee, no one ever reads them.

6. Shorty Long – Viper Mad
7. Mirah – Take Me Out Riding

Two great songs probably suffering from the fact they a) aren’t very well known and b) don’t have a video on YouTube for me to embed.

8. GUGUG – Get Carter

Plenty of GUGUG in the more popular posts. But not this one.

9. Jack Pepper – Girl of My Dreams

His musical talents were enough to attract Ginger Rogers, but not to attract any views.

10. The Blockheads – A Little Knowledge

The Blockheads without Ian Dury really isn’t the Blockheads.

10 YouTubers with Under 300 Subscribers Who Should Have Thousands

1. KestonCobblersClub

Loveable, tuneful folkies. Top band.

2. lololobotomy (Lila Burns)

Kimya Dawson-style songs with touching and insightful lyrics.

3. DianeRubio
4. SanfordAndSong

Two top-notch instrumentalists.

5. BenMealer

Old-school songs made fresh.

6. Phredd

So much fun your pants will explode.

7. UkesNotDead

Jeremy Kyle-loving star of Uke Hunt Podcast #6

8. NicholasAbersold

Writer of adorable songs.

9. Machitz (Roberto Moritz)
10. Machetista (Roberto Moniz)

Two Madeiran masters of the uke-precussor the machete.

5 Books Amazon Keeps Hidden

Search for ukulele books on Amazon (US) and you won’t find these on the first page.

1. 101 Ukulele Licks by Lil Rev

I wrote a full review here .

2. The Classical Ukulele by John King

Full review here.

3. Famous Solos and Duets for Ukulele by John King

My review here.

4. The Ukulele: A Visual History by Jim Beloff

My review here.

5. Ukulele for Dummies by The World’s Handsomest Ukulele Blogger

It’s not even out yet, so I can’t complain. It’s more favourably placed in the UK store. I wrote all about Ukulele for Dummies here.

View Comments


  1. Luke July 13th, 2011 6:30 pm

    RIP John King- His stuffs definitely worth looking into.

    I didn’t read the Kate interview simply because I find her music uninteresting. Nothing to do with how famous she is.

    Otherwise lots of great stuff here. Seen quite a bit of it before (especially the English websites posted above) but the stuff I haven’t I’ll for sure check out.

  2. Zym July 13th, 2011 6:56 pm

    I still like that Elected tune :)

  3. Stuie July 13th, 2011 8:07 pm

    Richard G over on Scorpex.net/Uke is something to keep an eye on, he updates his own chorded versions of songs, some of them are very fancy, all the time
    there’s about 3 songs a month that really make me wonder why I hadn’t thought to look them up before

  4. mictoboy July 13th, 2011 9:32 pm

    I don’t know what it says about me that the least read posts on this blog are some of my favourites

  5. Jon July 13th, 2011 9:44 pm

    great post…
    would you consider a post on latin/flamenco/gypsy tab sources?

    thanks for your blog.

  6. Ron Hale July 13th, 2011 11:52 pm

    Jeff is resally busy these days, Al, which
    is why HU might not be updated as often as
    usual for a bit.

    Armelle, of course. It’s her very own turf.
    Also, I like the newish Ukulele Boudoir site, especially for its photos and video uke reviews.
    They’ve just recently posted a nice review of the Firefly banjo uke.

    Yes, people do forget. But at the same time there’s been a shift in who makes videos in the past couple of years. And the uke scene has seen an influx of new talent. I’ve mentioned this here before but I’ll do it again.

    Some of the people who were making videos when I began playing (roughly 3 years ago, hardly seems possible) just aren’t making them now, either at all, or they’ve slowed way, way down.

    How many videos have Rod and Zoe made of late?
    Very few, I’ll venture. Or Craig? Or Gus & Fin? Or Molly? Out of sight out of mind in a uke scene that has so many newcomers making their marks.

    Perhaps there’s a limited time-frame for
    uke video makers after which for various reasons they just move on. And tastes change. Music doesn’t remain popular forever. Yes, Rod’s video was cute, but how would it fare in a current contest? Might not win, now. Things change.

    Kate is a specialized taste, not a generalized one. She appeals quickly and then the appeal fades just as quickly for some (the quirkiness gets old fast), while others remain fans. She is not a major presence on the uke scene who would necessarily attract a large number of readers for an interview. She’s cult, not mass.

    Now, I suspect if you got an interview with Taimane, it would get plenty of viewers. But, she might not be willing to give you one based on the treatment she’s received here. Readers have made a lot of snide comments about her.

    People who enjoyed Jumpin’ Jim’s book might try
    “Ukulele: The World’s Friendliest Instrument” by
    Daniel Dixon. Just as good. And here’s just one tidbit from it. Sam Kamaka Jr. speaking –

    “We’re besieged by wood pirates. Can’t keep ’em
    out. We’ve tried just about everything – electrified fences, alarms, spotlights, video surveillance. Nothing seems to work very well.
    They still get away with our seasoned koa by the truckload. If we could cut our security and insurance costs by one-half, you’d be able to get a Kamaka ukulele for a lot less than you pay right now.”

    I doubt that Amazon deliberately keeps anything hidden. John books are simply not meant for a mass audience. Jim’s book is getting a bit long in the tooth. Time for an update, especially with some new pictures.

    I mentioned the Part 1 video of the Uke Fest of Great Britain here a bit back. Well, part 2 is out, for any who enjoyed the other one.

    The Ukulele Festival of Great Britain – Part 2

  7. Stephen July 14th, 2011 12:37 am

    This is a great list. I love Humble Uker Ramblings, great site.

  8. pepamahina July 14th, 2011 1:50 am

    ACK! Too much information! Missing loads? So be it. It’s a big fat world out there, and there’s a danger of spending more time on the computer looking at uke related stuff than I do actually playing. Anyway, I don’t look to ukehunt for completeness, I like you as coolness filter. You and the “badass” are it for me. After that, it’s time to make music.

  9. Logan July 14th, 2011 4:00 am

    I really like data-driven posts; and I indeed was missing almost all 35 of these things.

    On a related note, I was unaware that hula hooping was so key to becoming a badass. (see http://youtu.be/7shJVjRiFEU) Ukulele Secrets is certainly no misnomer.

  10. Woodshed July 14th, 2011 6:54 am

    Luke: Absolutely. Every uker should be familiar with John King.

    Zym: So you’re the one who has visited it 300 and some times this year.

    Stuie: Thanks for the link.

    Mictoboy: I wonder what it says about me that I wrote them.

    Ron: I always forget about Ukulele Boudoir. They really need an RSS feed. I don’t think I could ever bring myself to read a book called, “Ukulele: The World’s Friendliest Instrument”. That’s not how I see it at all.

    Stephen: Glad you like.

    Pepamahina: Good philosophy to have. But you need to know what’s out there before you can find what suits best.

    Logan: Thanks very much.

  11. Armelle July 14th, 2011 6:01 pm

    Al, thanks very much for the mention!
    Great idea for a post! Gives me a few new things to check.
    I really like the Ukulele for Dummies book, it’s great to have so many ukulele topics covered in the one book and as usual everything is detailed and clear so congratulations. A recommended read for any keen uker.
    I’m learning plenty from the book. The Rock Riff on page 83 is giving me hard time at the moment.

  12. Jim D'Ville July 14th, 2011 6:58 pm

    Hey Al, Thanks for the mention. Anytime I get a hit spike, I know you are behind it! Can’t wait to get your Ukulele For Dummies.

  13. art Crocker July 14th, 2011 7:48 pm

    Al, Thanks for expanding my ukulele web wanderings. Not sure why I have never ran into Humble Uker Ramblings, it is worth a look.

  14. Heidi July 14th, 2011 8:14 pm

    I just bought a Uke and started learning in May, so this wasn’t on my radar screen, but Apple has a fantastic, free Dashboard Widget called, Ukulele Chords. A little hidden gem! Need a Mac OS X.

  15. Mike July 14th, 2011 8:28 pm

    thanks so much for all of this! There’s an awful lot of good stuff out there — it’s good to have a line on some of the less well known sites, books, and YouTubers now and then.

  16. ukuleletim July 14th, 2011 11:54 pm

    Al, I am humbled and grateful to be mentioned in your top sites. Thank you so much.

    And another thanks for the great resources and entertainment listed here. As pepamahina mentioned, you are a “coolness filter”. Thanks for your hard work.

  17. Woodshed July 14th, 2011 11:55 pm

    Armelle: You’re welcome! Very glad you’re enjoying the book.

    Jim: Always happy to send people your way.

    Art: I would have thought you were a Humble Uker regular – not sure why that is though.

    Heidi: Yeah, I have that widget. Loads of inversions on it (not all of them playable). Definitely worth a download.

    Mike: You’re very welcome.

  18. sanford(andsong) July 15th, 2011 6:15 am

    Wow…thanks Al!

  19. Ken July 15th, 2011 7:27 am

    Thanks Al. I think many of us check your site every single day. I didn’t yesterday. I was between computers.

  20. zym July 15th, 2011 10:28 am



    Cloud computing = Never saving or printing anything out ;)

  21. Phredd July 15th, 2011 10:29 am

    Thank you Al, My ukulele is exploding with joy over being included. If I could aspire to being on any list, it would be this.

  22. L.bo Marie July 15th, 2011 8:13 pm

    @ Heidi oh say! I love that widget… I have a (similar) one on my phone that I love, but this is much easier to read

    great list Al!

  23. Anya July 15th, 2011 8:32 pm

    just saying thanks again for another great post :)

  24. Woodshed July 16th, 2011 2:02 am

    sanford: Always a pleasure.

    Ken: Thanks and you’re welcome.

    zym: Would you tell my mum that? It is insane how many trees she’s killed.

    Phredd: My pleasure.

    L.bo: Thanks!

    Anya: And thank you!

  25. Ben Mealer July 17th, 2011 10:50 pm

    I missed “Viper Mad” and forgot about “Girl of My Dreams”. So much stuff in this post. It’s really cool to see my name in there. Thanks. Between this and the newer stuff, you pretty much got my whole Sunday.

  26. Woodshed July 18th, 2011 3:11 pm

    Ben: Glad I could keep you entertained and send a few people your way.

  27. John Bianchi August 8th, 2011 9:57 pm

    Yep – Ben should have thousands of followers. He’s a great musician, always pushing to get the best out of a tune or chord progression. Also – he’s got great musical taste.

    Kudos on including him!

  28. Woodshed August 9th, 2011 10:57 am

    John: Thanks. Yeah, he’s done some top-notch songs.

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