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aljanny
02-14-2011, 04:56 AM
So, as enthusiastic about ukuleles as I am, I want to have a group of other ukulele players to play with while I'm at college!
Seems like there should be an obvious solution to that, right?
I mean... there are quite a few ukulele players around my campus. I've been coming across them more and more often. Most of them are at the same stage I am - having started sometime within the last year.
The problem is, I am enthusiastic about everything ukulele - especially the great community atmosphere that ukuleleists seem to have - but the other ukuleleists here seem to not want anything to do with other ukulele players...

The conversation usually goes like this:

Me: Oh, hey! You play ukulele?! That's awesome!
Other Uker: Yeah!!! -enthusiastically-
Me: I play ukulele, too!
Other Uker: Oh, that's cool. -less enthusiastically-
Me: How long have you been playing?
Other Uker: About -insert some time less than a year or two-
Me: Awesome! I've been playing since July! There are a lot of ukuleleists around here!
Other Uker: Yeah
Me: We should all get together and play sometime - it'd be awesome!
Other Uker: Ummm...
And then the conversation kind of ends there, and kind of degrades to the other uker looking at their fretboard and strumming quietly to him/herself. Either that, or the other uker responds with a lukewarm 'Oh... yeah, maybe. We could play songs or something.'

I've actually had more luck with the guitarists being open and friendly to my ukulele-ism and wanting me to come jam with them (which, I haven't yet... I'm planning to, but the guitarists I know have been playing for years, so I'm nervous to start =P Just a little more knowledge, and I'll be ready! Just a little more... a little more... a little more...)

Any ideas where I'm going wrong...? Is it weird to be excited about other people sharing the same interest?
I mean... one ukuleleist alone in a dorm room is limited. Get a few ukuleleists playing together, building a community... and the possibilities suddenly become endless.

Maybe they're just nervous....? But they've all been playing out in the open campus, so they can't be that shy, right? =/

I guess I'll have to wait until I go home for the summer... There's an already established ukulele group right near where I live that I can't wait to go to =D

fitncrafty
02-14-2011, 05:01 AM
maybe you should put up a notice at the student union or something! Perhaps they are just not the right people. There are bound to be someone out there you can play with... Play with the guitarists, I find when I go to the group ALL of them are more experienced musician's I just do my best and strum on. Sometimes I just put my uke down and listen... I learn a lot just watching. I know it is easier said than done, but take the risk, I don't think you will regret it!

RyanMFT
02-14-2011, 06:10 AM
This is frustrating, I have the same thing when I ask people I meet in general if they want to jam......I like the suggestion about posting in the union (I work at a university). Also, get out and play where you can be seen and see if people come up to you and ask. Seems to me that my success rate of asking people if they want to jam vs. getting one who actually wants to jam is about 20 to 1, so keep trying.

Also, drift by the music department at your university and ask the administrative person if there are existing music clubs. Perhaps you can contact whomever runs those clubs and see if they might be willing to email to their group members that you are trying to start a ukulele club and to contact you if they are interested. It only takes one or two people to contact you and you will be jamming!

Which university do you attend?

aljanny
02-14-2011, 07:09 AM
maybe you should put up a notice at the student union or something! Perhaps they are just not the right people. There are bound to be someone out there you can play with... Play with the guitarists, I find when I go to the group ALL of them are more experienced musician's I just do my best and strum on. Sometimes I just put my uke down and listen... I learn a lot just watching. I know it is easier said than done, but take the risk, I don't think you will regret it!

I should! I'll probably wait until next fall to do something like that, though - I'm in the midst of running a big Theatre Club production/Theatre Club right now, so the idea of starting a legitimate group (more than just a little jam-do-whatever-session) is kind of daunting time/work-wise.
And I will definitely start playing with those guitarists... Just gotta kick myself out the door when that time of the week comes around and stop making up excuses =P

aljanny
02-14-2011, 07:24 AM
This is frustrating, I have the same thing when I ask people I meet in general if they want to jam......I like the suggestion about posting in the union (I work at a university). Also, get out and play where you can be seen and see if people come up to you and ask. Seems to me that my success rate of asking people if they want to jam vs. getting one who actually wants to jam is about 20 to 1, so keep trying.

Also, drift by the music department at your university and ask the administrative person if there are existing music clubs. Perhaps you can contact whomever runs those clubs and see if they might be willing to email to their group members that you are trying to start a ukulele club and to contact you if they are interested. It only takes one or two people to contact you and you will be jamming!

Which university do you attend?

I'm glad I'm not the only one with this issue... I was starting to think it was me!

Unfortunately, my college does not have a music department at all. Plus, there are absolutely no music clubs, either. This college tends to be known for hardworking students, and time-consuming coursework - and, unfortunately, because of this, those same students tend to shy away from involving themselves in anything that will take an outside-of-schoolwork-commitment, like running a club.
It's this same thing that's making me shy away from actually making a real ukulele club instead of just a random jam session. I started a Theatre Club in my freshman year (which is going strong!), but that was such an uphill battle through all of the ridiculous paperwork and hoops that the administration made - and still is making - us jump through that I'm hesitant to try it again with a new venture (which would be on top of the old venture, as I am still active in Theatre Club). It's just plain exhausting and very, very stressful. It's really unfortunate - I think it really makes people reluctant to form interest groups/clubs when there are so many ongoing requirements and demands to even keep the title of 'club'.

I think I'll try to do just jams next fall, and see what comes of it. Unfortunately, I'm wondering if I'll even get support from the Student Government to post flyers if it's not an official club... =/

Oh, and, I go to Ringling College of Art and Design. As much as I complain about the strictness of the administration, I really do love it here =)

joeybug
02-14-2011, 08:01 AM
I feel the same way...just want people to jam with, but haven't had luck with people in my area...Good Luck in getting either a group started or jamming with the guitar peeps!

RyanMFT
02-14-2011, 08:01 AM
Ahh yes, the hoops and bureaucracy of universities! I deal with that all the time as well. I think sometimes faculty and administrators forget that the whole reason we are here is for the students and we should act accordingly all the time! (I am faculty and a supervisor)

Hang in there, keep jammin'!

zudes
02-14-2011, 11:19 AM
I go to a big university in Texas and I was really surprised when I didn't see a ukulele club on the organization list. I want to start one but I'm worried because I'm pretty new to the uke and I'm not much of a leader, hahah. Although I'm fairly sure that by next fall (if not sooner), I'll try to get one running unless someone else does first!