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View Full Version : Do "Uke" Sacrifice????



mendel
02-16-2011, 04:15 AM
I heard a commercial on the radio the other day that said something along the lines of "life is about compromise. To get something you want, you have to give up something else".

It made me think for a while.... I know that we all praise the Uke and the many splendid things that it gives us, but what are we giving back? What are we willing to sacrifice in exchange for all that this instrument has brought to our lives? Have we done anything in order to pay it forward?

In other areas of my life, I have made an effort to give of myself in exchange for the things that I have been given. I am still in the infancy stages of being a Uker, but I am curious how others here have given back if they have been playing for a while. Giving does not have to be material or monetary. It could just be a little something like taking the time to play for a person, or learning a song that evokes powerful memories of days gone by for an elderly person. Something like that. Something that is not an issue of paying for someone to have an instrument or something of that nature. The question is...

"What do we sacrifice for the Uke in exchange for the bounty and beauty that this 4 stringed little miracle has brought to us?"

joeybug
02-16-2011, 04:25 AM
Lots of intriguing and interesting posts today!

I think my way of giving back for the moment is teaching my God daughter how to play, I'm not really good enough to teach anyone else, but I'm passing on my minimal skill to her...

fitncrafty
02-16-2011, 04:52 AM
I am also in my infancy of uke playing, but I would have to say. Having this instrument to bring me joy, has also brought me relaxation and the ability to find a joy within my self, that is then in turn brought to others. I find this especially in my parenting, I am more relaxed around my children and have the ability to spend better quality time with them. My joy feeds to others. (I sincerely hope). I am also very supportive and accepting of my children's musical choices.
I hope someday to be able to bring joy to others in my playing, and perhaps teach someone else at least a few chords and pass the gift on that way.
Thanks for another great post Mendel!

Tudorp
02-16-2011, 04:59 AM
It is about giving back. All things should be that way. If you are blessed, even small blessings, you should in turn be a blessing.

As far as Uke, I love to share it with the youth in the area. I live in a small town of working class. This isn't a very "rich" area, and many don't have allot for anything extra, so when a kid comes home and tells his/her parent that they want a Ukulele, odds are it isn't taken very seriously, and falls on deaf ears, or simply gets put so far down on the list, it falls off. So, when I come across a kid that has it in their eyes that really wants to learn the play one, I like to do toss them one and teach them a few things on it. If they come back for another quick lesson, they leave the 2nd time with the Uke I toss at them to take home and practice, learn and enjoy.

I love to take discarded, cheap, or just unwanted ukes, and work on them to make them good playing student ukes. And when I find one, and bring it back to life, I see it finds a good home with a caring kid that wants to learn. I have been blessed on a couple ukes from this forum from a couple good folk that sent me their old ukes, and those have blessed a couple kids. I really enjoy that, and love the looks in the kids eyes that get one of their own that they might not ever had gotten one.

Jazzyfemme
02-16-2011, 05:18 AM
Thanks for today's inspiration. I am still a newbie, but am wanting to progress quickly, so that I can accompany the children's chorus at my Ethical Society, and play at a local nursing home.

mendel
02-16-2011, 05:47 AM
Wow Guys! These are some incredible stories and contributions. I think that is the major thing I love about this forum. You guys inspire me to be a better player, parent, person, and to live a better day to day life. Thank you. You have all given me something.

Gillian
02-16-2011, 07:19 AM
I started a ukulele club about 6 months ago and have a devoted core membership of about 20 people (and increasing)! I love to look at their expressions when we play.The looks of enjoyment, intense concentration, and self-satisfaction are priceless.

It's a lot of work,making the songsheets, putting announcements in the local papers and music stores, keeping the website updated, etc. but when the members come up and thank me for starting the club, that appreciation pays for the effort a thousand times over.

Ingrate
02-16-2011, 07:30 AM
I sacrificed hundreds of dollars to Larry's Music! :rolleyes:

Seriously, I'll have to give this some thought. The 'ukulele has made me a happier person, which I hope has affected my interaction with others. That's about it, so far...

Hmmm.

veejayblox
02-16-2011, 07:46 AM
badges?.. we don't need no stinking badges!
..but seriously.. playing the ukulele has made me a better person, has made me a much more competent and focussed musician, and reminds me of the joy i can share and give to every person on this planet today. peace.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cN_cZa_zhlo

mm stan
02-16-2011, 09:00 AM
Aloha Mendel,
I have always tried to give back too, and with the ukulele and the all of you nice people on the forums, it has definetly extended that and taught me some life lessons on the way....Thank you to the ukulele and
you all for inspiring and motivating to play the ukulele and be a better person...I've learned in life, I can learn from anybody or anything if I open my eyes and my mind wide enough.. Happy Strummings and Mahalo,
MM Stan

RyanMFT
02-16-2011, 09:01 AM
I have been playing at a local nursing home on Sundays. I know a lot of people in the room aren't really aware of the music, but I try to play songs that are from an era which would spark a memory for the residents. Sometimes I hear one or two people singing along, which really lifts my spirits!

However, I couldn't hope to pay back as much as has been given to me by this instrument!

joeybug
02-16-2011, 10:03 AM
However, I couldn't hope to pay back as much as has been given to me by this instrument!

:agree: There just aren't enough hours in the day!

rem50
02-16-2011, 12:07 PM
I play bluegrass mandolin every friday night at a local jam. For the last 3 weeks whenever I get up to sing I play the uke instead of the mandolin. At first I was scoffed but now I have people saying they like it and wonder how hard it is to learn. This is the most "all encompassing" instrument. It crosses all the genres of music and brings a smile to your face too!

GreatGazukes
02-16-2011, 01:01 PM
I have been playing at a local nursing home on Sundays. I know a lot of people in the room aren't really aware of the music, but I try to play songs that are from an era which would spark a memory for the residents. Sometimes I hear one or two people singing along, which really lifts my spirits!


I work as an activities assistant in an aged care facility, and a course I did regarding music for people with dementia pointed out that the music a person listens too and enjoys in their teens to mid twenties, when the hormones are racing, is the music that revives emotions of happiness. It has to do with the emotion centre of the brain being in close proximity to the music memory part. So if you include in your repertoire music from that era of their lives,(this is now probably music from the late 1940's to the 1950's!!!) you will be succesful in your music sessions. Getting them to call out certain phrases from songs is a great way to get them involved...

Glad to hear that you are taking the time to make our elders lives enjoyable and fulfilling.

RyanMFT
02-16-2011, 05:00 PM
Thanks Greatgazukes, I am playing only songs from the 40's and 50's so that it might be something they could recognize. Well, sometimes I throw in something new that I am working on. Cool that it might bring people joyful emotions. I hope that someone would do the same for me when I am a senior or am not fully able to care for myself!

Hippie Dribble
02-16-2011, 09:14 PM
I work as an activities assistant in an aged care facility, and a course I did regarding music for people with dementia pointed out that the music a person listens too and enjoys in their teens to mid twenties, when the hormones are racing, is the music that revives emotions of happiness. It has to do with the emotion centre of the brain being in close proximity to the music memory part. So if you include in your repertoire music from that era of their lives,(this is now probably music from the late 1940's to the 1950's!!!) you will be succesful in your music sessions. Getting them to call out certain phrases from songs is a great way to get them involved...

Glad to hear that you are taking the time to make our elders lives enjoyable and fulfilling.

thanks for sharing that Tony. I do similar stuff as an aged carer and DT in the dementia unit of a local nursing home too. Music reaches into places, memories and feelings that are often beyond words, and the uke is the vehicle I use. But believe me, it's no sacrifice. Just the opposite actually. To see people who are virtually catatonic mouth lines to old hymns and folk songs is mindblowing and the happiest part of my job by the longest way. I wish my blessings to everyone who takes time to share the ukulele and their love of music with others, especially the very old or the very young. It's a precious gift. :)

Pippin
02-16-2011, 09:48 PM
Life is meant to be abundant and the idea of giving up something in order to have your "piece of the pie" is purely a socialistic principle that has been put forth by the people that want to take whatever it is from you (please note-- a pure socialist society, like the "American Indian tribes" is another matter all together and a lot different than most instances of modern socialism where a FEW have extreme wealth while the MASSES live near poverty level).

Generosity is a wonderful thing, and I am very "giving", in fact, my family thinks I am too generous. What I do, I don't do for money or wealth and I taught my son to measure success by accomplishment, not by wealth. At the same time, the acquisition of wealth is a powerful motivation for people to become business leaders and creates jobs for others.

"Giving back" something to the world and your fellow inhabitants is a good thing when done freely. Notice the difference is between distribution of wealth and charity is that charity is done freely, the other is done by force.

How this pertains to ukulele... I do give ukuleles to people where it will benefit the manufacturers by giving their products exposure and I buy and give a lot of them away as gifts. Spreading the joy of music is a beautiful thing and I love to watch kids learn to play music, especially ukulele.

Pippin
02-16-2011, 09:51 PM
I have been playing at a local nursing home on Sundays. I know a lot of people in the room aren't really aware of the music, but I try to play songs that are from an era which would spark a memory for the residents. Sometimes I hear one or two people singing along, which really lifts my spirits!

However, I couldn't hope to pay back as much as has been given to me by this instrument!

Well done. If you bring a smile to those singing along, that is a great reward.

Eric Blooduke
02-18-2011, 09:56 AM
Hi Mendel, in specific uke terms, I started a ukulele group at our local Quakers. I have been writing the music and teaching everybody how to play. I guess we have 5 regular uke-ists. None of them had played before so I guess I have helped bring music and fun into their lives.