View Full Version : singing AND playing..

10-29-2009, 03:10 PM
im not sure if this has been posted before or not but how exactly do you sing AND play at the same time?? i've tried this so many times but my fingers get confused and soon enough i stop playing.
this has been bugging me forever!

Mahalo Nui

10-29-2009, 03:31 PM
you've got to just keep on keepin' on. it'll come. i promise. with enough practice your fingers will just know where to go. give it time.

10-29-2009, 03:32 PM
Here are a couple of threads about the same topic:

10-29-2009, 03:41 PM
Like they always say; practice makes perfect! :D

10-29-2009, 09:17 PM
Experiment with this:

1. Take it slow. When I get excited, I tend to speed up.

2. Don't sing, just "hum" the melody while you're playing the uke. Words can be distracting. Concentrate on the chords.

3. Just sing the song, acapella, without the uke. Forget the uke for now and just sing the song in a key that your voice can handle.

4. Put it all together, play and sing it over and over and over and over..... Pretend people are watching you perform and you just nailed it. Then repeat these words, "I am the master",lol.

Uncle Rod Higuchi
10-30-2009, 08:53 AM
Make sure you can play all the chords and can change from chord to chord without looking at your fingers.

Try playing through the song at a quicker than normal tempo - as a test to make sure you have the mechanics for playing the song down pat.

When you can play the song comfortably, without having to concern yourself about the chords and chord changes, you'll be able to free yourself to focus on the melody, the lyrics, the rhythm, etc.

In the beginning, it's easy to think that because the ukulele appears to be a simple instrument, it should be easy to play. However, "simple to learn" and "easy to play" are not the same thing.

When attempting to play and sing at the same time, you really are melding at least 2 activities that require mechanical (physically-speaking) dexterity and visual/vocal expression.

Practice will definitely help, however, if you will divide and conquer the contributing elements (playing the uke - and - singing the song), I believe you will make more meaningful progress. After a while, doing both at the same time will no longer be a major concern (except when unfamiliar and difficult chords are involved and the song/melody is unfamiliar to you).


Keep uke-in',

11-10-2009, 01:40 AM
as you sing just play the chord on the first beat of each new chord change at first until you get used to where and when the fingers need to move, then add more rhythm,

11-10-2009, 03:06 AM
Maybe these will help:

1) Look for patterns in your chord progressions, such as chords that seem to move in a line or circle. Seems weird, but picture a G-D-G-C progression. To me it looks like an inverted L-shape because of the directions my hand has to move.

2) When you make a chord change, picture in your mind right then what chord you're going to next.

3) You might try reading The Inner Game of Music (http://www.amazon.com/Inner-Game-Music-Barry-Green/dp/0385231261/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1257861874&sr=8-1). It gives tips to cut down on mental interference when playing music.

11-11-2009, 12:47 PM
thanks for the tips!!! they really helped alot!

11-11-2009, 01:34 PM
A few other suggestions:

* Learn something you can already sing.
* 2 or 3 chord songs are best at first.
* Play it chordally- not singing- until you can play it by heart
*Find the song with the chord printed above the word where you change chords.

Hope this helps Doug

11-14-2009, 05:39 AM
Maybe a rather odd "tip".. but try to meet other ukulele players who can sing and play...

I was going nuts since I couldn't even think about lyrics and play at the same time but then one day I met a bunch of other uke players and after watching and listening in real life-next day, I suddenly could do it as well(within my limited skills:o of course) with songs like "White Sandy Beach" aso.

Since that- it gets better each time I play :)


11-17-2009, 04:04 PM
It's just a matter of practice. For example the first times you wont be able to sing and play.. you should get along with the chord progression first, then maybe start to whistle the song, and then proceed to sing it.

It's just a matter of getting your brain used to do both things at the same time. It may be frustating at first but you'll see how it's all practice :)

The Pinneapple Pirate
11-20-2009, 12:06 PM
i'm one of the lucky ones who can do it pretty naturally
for the most part i think it's a matter of rhythm
you get the right strum pattern in there and it'll just kinda flow without much effort