Welcome to Spring, everyone! I hope you all have enjoyed / are enjoying your Spring Break, and are looking forward to getting back to playing ukulele with us. Classes begin again the week of April 15 and run 8 weeks through the week of June 3. Registration is now open! Click on class titles below for more information about each class:
Southeast Portland classes
All SE Portland classes held at Lincoln St Methodist Church: 5145 SE Lincoln St., Portland OR 97215
- Ukulele for Kids (Continuing): Tuesdays, 4:00-5:00pm
- Ukulele Sing & Strum: Tuesdays, 5:30-6:30pm
- Ukulele Ensemble (Continuing): Tuesdays, 6:45-7:45pm
- Ukulele 2: Wednesdays, 5:30-6:30pm
- Ukulele for Parents & Caregivers: Wednesdays, 6:45-7:45pm
Southwest Portland Classes
All SW Portland classes held at West Hills UU Fellowship: 8470 SW Oleson Rd, Portland OR 97223
This Term’s Musical Theme
Anyone who has taken Ukulele Sing & Strum knows that each term, we study a different genre of music. This term we are returning to THE BLUES!
Typically, we cover the 12-Bar Blues in Ukulele 2 (and those enrolled in Ukulele 2 this term will, indeed, do so). However, I’m excited to bring this theme to Sing & Strum classes, as well as Ukulele for Kids and Ukulele Ensemble. These classes will look at the 12-Bar Blues, as well, in addition to other songs and techniques representative of the tradition.
When we think of the Blues, perhaps we think of mainstream examples, like the music of B.B. King or Billie Holliday. But did you know that Elvis Presley’s Hounddog was originally a blues song? Any fans of the Grateful Dead? An enormous amount of their repertoire were old blues songs. Eric Clapton? Same deal. Throughout the 20th century, rock’n’roll music kept borrowing (or just outright taking…) from the Blues. Think of rock as the musical teenage child of the Blues and you’ve got the idea.
In most classes this term, we’ll learn traditional songs that illustrate the original form of the Blues. Then we’ll look at more modern songs that are clearly inspired by the Blues, but don’t necessarily sound like Blues songs. Sprinkled throughout, we’ll also learn some unique Blues techniques, including the “Blues shuffle”, the impressive-sounding “trickle-down close”, and other “fills” that you can insert into any song to give it more of a Blues feel.
I hope you can join us for this expedition into new musical territory! If you have any questions at all – about the Blues, about classes, about anything – please don’t hesitate to reach out and let me know! Email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hope to see you in class soon!