View Full Version : Support??

12-28-2015, 08:22 AM
Something to talk about. Do you get a lot of support on the home front for your ukulele, or are you just on your own, so to speak?

Croaky Keith
12-28-2015, 08:26 AM
I'm always on my own when (attempting) playing any instrument. :)

Edit: It may be different when I can actually play it. ;)

12-28-2015, 08:50 AM
My wife is a wonderful person but she is not the "hold your hand and give you piles of compliments type" She is an A type over achiever who thinks it is great I am playing an instrument and have an engaging hobby. But she isn't about to gush all over me for just doing something

So the short answer is NO. Although she does not object to all the ukes I have bought and encourages me to go to as many uke jams as I please so that is support enough for me.

12-28-2015, 08:51 AM
I'm single, no children, but my twin brother and his wife live two floors down in our family owned apartment building. He supports my playing and seems always interested in the gigs and modifications I do. His wife says she likes it but some time ago my cousin was visiting from Toronto and they asked me to play for them. When I started doing Iz's version of "Over the Rainbow" which I know she likes, they both broke out into laughter. I made a vow to never play for them again.

My 93 year old mother who is orthodox Jewish (we were brought up that way but it never took) always makes a sour face when I mention playing the uke and the group I'm with, she doesn't accept that I choose to play uke and bass rather then do religious activities.

Otherwise, I'm highly gratified to be playing with The CC Strummers. The leader, Cali Rose creates an "ohana" atmosphere and there's a great sense of camaraderie, and they seem to enjoy my goofy antics and UAS/GAS. Since joining the group, I record our rehearsals and put them on my website so they can all practice anytime and print up a cover sheet to put on their song books when we perform gigs, so I feel very accepted by all.

12-28-2015, 08:55 AM
My wife was very happy when I found the Uke as she knew I was looking for that special something to keep me occupied and it took a while to find it. She encourages me all the time to continue.

She is a reader and when she reads, she totally emerges herself into the book, so I can practice when she's there and she won't notice. I could be on fire and she wouldn't notice.

How's that for support?

12-28-2015, 08:57 AM
Hubby gets an A+ in "Uke supporter".

12-28-2015, 09:25 AM
Nice thread.
My wife enjoys my playing. I almost had her in tears one day when I was working on some minor chord transitions. She said, "I was so moved." It made me happy.

My family is also supportive.
I have played in front of my parents and they were expecting "Tiny Tim" (Nothing wrong with Tiny Tim)...
but a Pono mango tenor with a low g has a very unique sweet and warm tone.

BTW, I was using the experimental Oasis wound G/C warm E/A strings I got from Chuck over the holidays and my father thought they sounded great when I played a finger style version of Amazing Grace, one of his top five songs.
And my mother said it reminded her of a Spanish guitar when I was picking out Pachelbel's Cannon in C. She said, "You can play that at my funeral."
I was moved.

Having family support does give me more confidence in my playing but I also receive great pleasure in those "A-ha moments" in practice and noodling alone.

12-28-2015, 09:33 AM
Support? Nope.

12-28-2015, 09:37 AM
When I got serious about uke, it led to the ending of a very long term relationship. It was long overdue, but essentially the guy got jealous of the uke and the friendships and activities that playing music led to, so - yeah, no support there! Interesting how something so seemingly inconsequential as playing a ukulele brought to light everything that was wrong in that relationship. It was for the best, though, and now I'm surrounded by supportive friends who are also musicians and all is as it should be.

Well... my cat might say otherwise. She hates the uke, and hides whenever I take one out to play - definitely not supportive at all! :)

Jon Moody
12-28-2015, 09:46 AM
My folks are very encouraging, but then again, they're both retired music educators who've always supported my musical endeavors.

My wife is so-so on it. She's glad I'm playing around the house, and that the kids can enjoy it, and (hopefully) show some aptitude toward wanting to learn to play. But other than that, she's been married to a professional musician for ten years, so it's definitely lost any sort of "magic" or allure that it may have once had.

12-28-2015, 10:30 AM
Hubby gets an A+ in "Uke supporter".

Her husband is my biggest "fan"!

12-28-2015, 12:11 PM
My spouse is supportive, but not really interested. She's more concerned that I will get too many ukuleles. One of my sons plays guitar, and have picked up one of my ukes. We can't really play together very well, though. He's a natural and I'm a plodder.

12-28-2015, 12:49 PM
It is just my wife and me. She is pretty good with my playing the uke, and she even sings with me sometimes. She goes to all my gigs and jams, the few that I've done, and is good about getting me beer when I need it. For some reason, she does not like me busking, and while I do a little busking regardless, she stays away. But in general, she is just sort of not into it. She knows a lot about music, and she will answer questions about music in general, but if I try to talk to her about ukuleles specifically, she gets that look in her eyes that says, "I'm thinking of something else."

I was accumulating quite a bit of ukulele related "stuff", and it started to grow in one corner of the dining room, and she did suggest that if I was going to create a shrine to the god of ukulele, could I do it somewhere other than the dining room, living room, or any other place that people might see when they came to visit. I quit buying stuff like that, and moved what I had to a closet in one of the bedrooms upstairs.

When the kids come home, they are not really impressed. They were home during Christmas, and I tried to get them to sing Christmas songs with me, and they wouldn't. But my wife, did for a little while. Then she went down stairs with the kids. Oh well, that's OK.

12-28-2015, 12:49 PM
We have been together long enough that any personal hobby that does not set the house on fire or result in incarceration is great. He is into boats and fishing. I am into camping, kick scooters, and ukuleles. I fish and boat with him, and he camps with me, but no scooting or uke playing. He did get a banjo, but it is unplayed for now. Says that is for retirement.

My husband has to turn in about two hours before I do due to work schedules. He has always been the type to go to sleep with the TV playing. I feel honored when he asks me to turn off the TV and play him to sleep.

It took a while for the grandkids to warm up to it - one would tell me to stop playing. I wish they wanted to play along, but they are still more interested in fiddling with the tuners than playing. But they are all five and under, so maybe in time.

My mom was the most supportive since that was our bonding time.

12-28-2015, 01:02 PM
My wife won't let me sell any of my ukuleles - she says that they all sound different, and have their own personalities. I will be allowed to sell the Republic Laminated Zebrawood concert IF I get a nice, pretty, sweet sounding solid zebrawood uke to replace it...

She enjoys my playing, and often comes to the Open Mic night I play at, or any gigs I can get. I also play at the local Yarn Shop we both spend time at, whenever they have a special event. She points out my YouTube page to friends and relatives. She goes to UOGB concerts with me. Two of our knitting/spinning friends also play (To be truthful, it was because of UU that one of them - Fitncrafty- became a yarn/fiber friend).

A good part of that support is that my wife's dad used to play Ukulele on camping trips and at family gatherings when she was growing up. He gave me his old Harmony Soprano uke on Thanksgiving 2010. After he had a stroke, we went out to help care for him for a while. I brought a uke, and played and sang for/with him every night we were there that summer. He couldn't speak too well, but he was able to sing a little bit, and it was great therapy.

One of my first YouTube videos was playing my KoAloha Sceptre at his memorial service in 2011.

So yeah, I've got some great support here on the home front.


12-28-2015, 01:08 PM
My wife says that the ukulele is my healthiest obsession. I wonder if that is a qualified nod of approval...well, I don't wonder about it too much. She has just begun learning to play slack key guitar. It makes her happy.

12-28-2015, 02:56 PM
I had a vent all typed up, but I erased it. My kids are supportive and play as well. I won't say who, but either the wife or the dog are not so supportive.

12-28-2015, 03:26 PM
Well... my cat might say otherwise. She hates the uke, and hides whenever I take one out to play - definitely not supportive at all! :)

Hahaha, we used to have two cats, neither like the uke and both used to leave the house if I played my banjo uke.

Now just one cat and my 18yo daughter. I gave her one of my ukes and she picks on it quietly in her room sometimes. The cat still leaves the house if I so much as get the banjo uke out of the cupboard.

12-28-2015, 09:49 PM
While I have been playing all kinds of musical instruments for most of my life, my wife didn't go through any musical education. One day I showed her a few chords on the uke, though, and she really got hooked. It was only then and together that we discovered about the different sizes, woods, and makers. All our buying decisions were made together, so we have become our own biggest enablers, but it also stopped us from impulse buying when one of us wasn't extatic about a new discovery. If anything, I would say that the uke only brought us closer together.

12-29-2015, 05:40 AM
My wife's degree is in music, although she works in a completely different field. She is glad that I have found a hobby to keep me occupied after I retired. She sometimes comes to the Uke group to sing along, unlike me she can carry a tune. She understands to some extend my need to get a new ukulele from time to time. Will help with a music theory question. I would say she is supportive and tolerant of my limited skills and natural abilities.

Ukulele Eddie
12-29-2015, 06:15 AM
My wife's personality is more prone to dabble in many things whereas I tend toward 110% or 0%. She is amused -- perhaps bemused -- by my uke obsession. I wouldn't say she actively supports it per se, but that is not her personality. She knows it is important to me and is something that brings me great joy, and is happy for me that I am challenging myself. And that is enough for me.

12-29-2015, 06:36 AM
There is no discouragement of ukulele playing by my wife.
While she doesn't particularly care to hear me play, she has gone to Jake & Flea-Bitten Dawgs concerts with me.
She even made me a uke themed quilt.

My cat really seems to like my playing, the dogs can take it or leave it. :)

Note: I fully support my wife's hobbies and interests.
We have seen Springsteen 7 times and I got tickets for us for 2 more concerts on his new River tour.

Croaky Keith
12-29-2015, 08:59 AM
George, (my cat), didn't like my harmonica playing, but he seems happy enough with my ukes. :rolleyes:

12-29-2015, 09:22 AM
Her husband is my biggest "fan"!

I thought I was your biggest fan?!

12-29-2015, 12:46 PM
Although she does not object to all the ukes I have bought and encourages me to go to as many uke jams as I please so that is support enough for me.

My wife also encourages me to play as much AWAY FROM THE HOUSE AS POSSIBLE. My daughter got a uke as a gift a few years ago - she dabbled and I got hooked when I was trying to help her learn. Of course, anything that Dad likes is instantly, immensely uncool, so she dropped it in favor of the piano and violin. The family doesn't complain much about my playing, which I take as a measure of support in itself.

12-29-2015, 12:49 PM
I thought I was your biggest fan?!

No. You're my main back-up player. Couldn't do it without you.

Back to the thread.....

12-29-2015, 01:19 PM
Something to talk about. Do you get a lot of support on the home front for your ukulele, or are you just on your own, so to speak?

I now have a ton of support, since starting a ukulele group in my community, starting a uke fest, and getting my husband and some friends addicted to the instrument. Of course, I didn't get them addicted, the instrument naturally does that because it is wonderful. But, my husband plays, encourages my playing and all my ukulele endeavors. Our uke group is also very supportive and fun. We are growing a nice little ukulele culture in our neck of the woods.

12-29-2015, 01:19 PM
Wow. Reading the posts about anti-'ukulele responses from family makes me appreciate how lucky I am.

My wife expressed interest in an 'ukulele for Christmas 2014, so I got her one. When I said I was willing to learn so we could play together, she got me one. This Christmas (2015) we gifted each other with new 'ukuleles. She's talking about rearranging things in the house in order to create a place where we can display our 'ukuleles. We went to Jake's concert together, attend local 'ukulele practice sessions, have found new friends, and discovered that one of our neighbors plays the 'ukulele.

So, yes, there's support, and UAS enabling as well. :cool:

My father, who is an avid banjo player, has been teaching both of us about music theory and fingering techniques. My sister gifted me with an 'ukulele strap. My mother asked us to bring our 'ukuleles when we visited, and gifted me with a Hawaiian shirt.

My wife's cousin has purchased an 'ukulele, and attends the practice meetings with us. Her husband is now expressing interest in one of his own.

Of course, I find this site very supportive, and appreciate the generous help I have received from folks who are here.

Very lucky, and thankful.

12-29-2015, 01:22 PM
My husband has to turn in about two hours before I do due to work schedules. He has always been the type to go to sleep with the TV playing. I feel honored when he asks me to turn off the TV and play him to sleep.

I love falling asleep to the sound of ukulele.

12-30-2015, 01:13 AM
Ukulele is my passion but my boyfriend just sort of regards it as a tiny guitar and thinks it's a bit of a joke, though he's jammed with me once or twice so it's a mixed bag really :)

12-30-2015, 06:11 PM
Well, two of my TBUS friends went with me to play for the patients at an ALF on Christmas Eve.
I'm in the third largest uke club in the USA....as an Event Organizer.
My wife plays too....just got her a UBass, and she is eating that thing up.
The neighbors, not so much. The only time we played on our back patio, the kids in the house behind us turned their Rappin boom box up to about 100 dB....
I was the 1st person to play the uke on stage in my church.
I feel pretty supported....