View Full Version : Havin' a uke'n great time at the Helsinki Ukeday!

05-14-2008, 01:48 AM
Last night was the Ukeday in May (http://www.ukulelenurkka.net/) Finnish Ukulele Network get together at our regular hangout at Bar Mendocino. Because these events are usually held on week days, I don't often get to attend, but this time there was going to be a concert and I really wanted to check it out!

And I'm glad I did! :music: Where do I start? I got to play some awesome ukes: the Kala jazz tenor (the archtop with the f-holes) is gorgeous! It's a fairly quiet uke, and of course it was difficult to hear it at all in the pub setting. But as I said before, it's gorgeous and it really seems to like rocking out. If you play modern tunes, this could be worth checking out. Plugged-in though, there wasn't a more perfect uke at the entire meet more suited to the job. Have a listen here (http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendID=292782824).

I also got to play a concert uke made by Tangi, and that was a real treat to play. I've heard things that run the gamut when it comes to his ukes, but I have not a bad thing to say about this one. Makes me wonder if all the bad stuff I've read is a bit unfounded. If all of his ukes are as great as that, then it's the best bargain going.

My lovely old Koaloha soprano missed me and spent most of the evening stuck to me like glue. The only bad thing is that the E string has got a wicked buzz! :( Speaking of buzz, I picked up an ovation soprano and loved it, but it too had a buzz. My koa Flea meanwhile made the rounds, and people seemed to like it, though tough to tell in such a setting. Someone also had one of those homegrown cigar box ukes but I didn't have a chance to play it.

Now on to the tunes. The Bastardos Sympaticos were awesome, and you can get a flavor for it on the myspace page linked above. Perfect music for the pub setting, and it even got non-ukesters singing along.

But the real treat was Uni and her Ukulele. (http://www.myspace.com/uniherukelele) She was sans string section, so it was truly just her and her uke, and I really need a thesaurus to find another word great, because I've been using that word a lot. I picked up her cd, and not regretting that decision. She also autographed it for me:



And yeah, I plugged the UU.

Oh, and they made me get on stage. Bastardos Sympaticos and Uni were jammin' 52" and it was noticed I had never been on stage. I pleaded "But I don't know the chords!" to which the guy who ran the bar said " It's a f*cking C chord and G chord, get your @ss on stage!" so what else could I do? I actually learned the rest of the chords AFTER the song, typical.

But hey, I did finally learn one of the big uke anthems, so that's not a bad thing.

All-in-all, I great time was had by all, and if you're ever in Helsinki, you should check it out. We do this once a month!

The most awesome moment of the night: a non-ukester fell in love with the music enough to buy one of Uni's cd's and have her autograph it. Awesome.

05-14-2008, 01:52 AM
Nice write-up. Sounds like you had a great time.

05-14-2008, 03:17 AM
Sweet! You got on stage, you played a bunch of ukes, and you plugged the UU!

Now if only we can find a video of the perfomances...

05-14-2008, 03:42 AM
Excellent, Glad to hear that you finally got onstage to play, even though it was only G and C!! Way to go.

05-14-2008, 05:30 AM
good for you Kim! that sounds like it was a ton of fun!

05-14-2008, 05:45 AM
Wow Kim....that was an adventure!!!! Kim on stage :rock: congratulations!! lol i love the part of :
" It's a f*cking C chord and G chord, get your @ss on stage!"

And how's your doggie????

05-14-2008, 07:08 AM
I'm curious, how much people go to that event?

05-14-2008, 07:23 AM
ah 5'2" was the first song i learnt on uke.

05-14-2008, 09:02 AM
Yeah, it was really sweet. I think I need to get my butt out there for all the meetings. Actually not as many ukesters showed up as were apparently going to. I'd estimate maybe 20 of us were uke players. The rest of the pub was packed though, and got in on the action.

And when he hears I know (a very basic) House of the Rising Sun, he's going to make me get up on that stage by myself! :eek:

I wish Kala made that archtop in concert size... or maybe I don't because then I'd buy it for sure.

Pixie has her mole removed on Friday, and gets a teeth cleaning at the same time, so if she knew, she wouldn't be thrilled. She got her coat stripped so now she looks like a proper doxie, and she's lovin' that though. It was getting a bit warm for that winter coat.

And next month: Pete Howlett shows up baring ukes to test out. There's 12 or so members having a custom "Helsinki Soprano" being built. I wonder if he delivers them next month or something. It's been about year so that sounds about right. I think more people are going to show up. ;)