The ukulele is a four-stringed instrument that originated in Portugal but was popularized by Hawaiians in the nineteenth century. The size of the instrument can vary, with larger instruments producing deeper tones. During the reign of King Kalkaua, who incorporated the ukulele into official state gatherings, the ukulele became especially popular in Hawaii. It was later used by artists such as Bing Crosby and Elvis Presley on recordings. On February 2, ukulele players across the country will strum their favorite tunes to commemorate National Ukulele Day.
Importance of National Ukulele Day?
From Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters’ “Mele Kalikimaka” to Elvis Presley’s “Blue Hawaii” to Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s widely acclaimed medley of “Somewhere over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World,” the ukulele has helped shape the pop music landscape.
It has made significant contributions to cultural history. In 1880, Hawaiians were introduced to the ukulele by Portuguese immigrants from Madeira and Cape Verde. The immigrants organized nightly street concerts for the locals, and it quickly became a staple of Hawaiian music. It made its way to the mainland for the first time in 1915, thanks to performances by George E. K. Awai and his Royal Hawaiian Quartet. It’s simple to play. This is one of the simplest instruments to learn. Simply learning a few chords can get you well on your way to playing a few simple pop songs. It’s an excellent instrument for teaching younger children to play music.
What to do on National Ukulele Day?
- Play some ukulele music. Purchase some such music compilations or albums that feature the instrument. “Blue Hawaii” by Elvis Presley and, more recently, “Ukulele Songs” by Eddie Vedder are great places to start. There is even a Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, which performs with ukuleles of various sizes. Press the play button!
- Learn how to play Ukuleles. Ukuleles are relatively inexpensive to buy and learn to play. Celebrate National Ukulele Day by going to your local music store and purchasing one, as well as some music books!
- You may visit Hawaii. This day has a long and illustrious history in Hawaii, not only in Hawaiian music but also in Hawaiian culture. A trip to Hawaii does not have to consist solely of sand and surf. There will almost certainly be live music featuring it, as well as numerous opportunities to learn more about the instrument’s role in local culture.
5 simple Ukulele songs to learn
- Eric Clapton’s tribute to his late son, “Tears in Heaven,” is an excellent first song to learn to play it.
- Vance Joy’s song “Riptide” has simple chords that are easy to learn.
- “Somewhere Over the Rainbow “: This “Wizard of Oz” classic has a simple melody that is ideal for beginners.
- Upside down: This song, which appears on Jack Johnson’s soundtrack to the film “Curious George,” was almost written for the it.
- Train’s popular “Hello Soul Sister!” is an excellent place to begin.
National Ukulele Day Dates
Year Date Day
2022 February 2 Wednesday
2023 February 2 Thursday
2024 February 2 Friday
2025 February 2 Sunday
2026 February 2 Monday