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ukejack82
04-21-2011, 07:39 AM
I had a very discouraging conversation with a coworker yesterday who I have talked to before about music theory. I made the comment about how much I enjoyed attending UkeFest a few weeks back. He proceeded to lecture me about why the guitar was superior/better than the ukulele and how he "just did not get it". He asked me why I would bother with an instrument that "only" had four strings when I could enjoy doing so much more with a guitar. I shared with him that the ukulele was very accessible to me and that it brought me enjoyment. I respectively told him that I understand that everybody has preferences regarding musical tastes, etc. and that I did not understand his need to educate me or get me to change my mind. I mentioned that it was just as silly as arguing about which is better, vanilla or chocolate ice-cream. It is a matter of tastes. Although I am not a musician, I expect that each instrument has advantages and disadvantages, and that all can be appreciated and valued in their own right. It just irritates me that he felt he had the right to make value judgments regarding my instrument choice and that he felt compelled to get me to "see the light".

Anyway, once I got home and started practicing Sentimental Journey on my Mainland tenor last night, I felt a lot better.

Sorry for ranting, I just needed to get this off my chest.

- Jack

NatalieS
04-21-2011, 07:44 AM
It surprises me when musicians feel the need to put down instruments that they don't play. Methinks his heart isn't in the right place. The purpose of playing guitar, or ukulele, or whatever, should be to make music and enjoy it. Not to assert that you're superior to other people. Boo on him. :)

chiefnoda
04-21-2011, 07:47 AM
Hi ukejack82

> Sorry for ranting, I just needed to get this off my chest

Glad to hear it out. You were absolutely right that the ukulele was very accessible to me and that it brought me enjoyment. None of his business what you do.

I am a guitar player but I love ukuleles, too. And I don't preach!

Happy Pickin
Chief

ConspiracyUkeist
04-21-2011, 07:48 AM
Oh don't pay attention to that sourpuss.

The land owner here where I live, well, I was teaching myself trumpet. Making excellent progress too. I quit for various reasons (not that great a busking instrument, and I'd rather sing and play an accompanying instrument). But, I said that since I'm learning, maybe he could get his guitar out and we could play some stuff. He said trumpet and guitar don't go with each other, it'd be like fried eggs on ice cream!

His preferred music is the kind of stuff you hear played in the background in corporate buildings.

I don't discuss music with him much. Great guy, but music is like religion....

ItsMrPitchy
04-21-2011, 07:57 AM
Whats the point in putting down another instrument these kinds of people really annoy me. Music is to be enjoyed, and where is the enjoyment out of putting down another instrument.

LoMa
04-21-2011, 08:07 AM
I love ukes.
I love flamenco guitars.
I love steel string guitars.
I am very happy that all of them exist.

I also like the accordion. I like bongos. I like harmonicas.

None of them take the place of the others. They are different and no one is required to play or even like any or some or all.
I get into moods - uke moods, guitar moods, etc. I get real focused on an instrument, and then after awhile, I rotate to another one. It keeps it all fresh and exciting for me.

Mostly I'm glad that I get to play and listen to them all!!!

RyanMFT
04-21-2011, 08:10 AM
Your story reminds me of when I was a young teenager. I was taking guitar lessons and I would go to flea markets with my family, and I was always looking for a vintage guitar. I clearly remember my parents pointing out lots of "four string guitars", to which I would turn up my nose, saying "that's not a guitar". I didn't even consider the ukulele. Looking back now, I wish I hadn't been so ignorant of the wonderfulness of the ukulele, but at the time what I saw was guitar.....kind of like tunnel vision.

Seems like some people are just like that all their lives (I claim being young for my silliness). That bravado that sometimes pervades the guitar world is unfortunate because those who embody it miss out on a lot....just like I missed out on all the great uke's I could have had for next to nothing!

SailingUke
04-21-2011, 08:17 AM
I too play ukulele & guitar, I enjoy both.
I must admit that I used to think of the ukulele as a toy compared to a guitar.
Then I discovered James Hill and as the saying goes "the rest is history"
The last few years I have been privaledged to be part of the ukulele community.
I have met and played with some of the big names as well as many of the great folks here on UU.

What I have learned is the ukulele is an instrument of its own and is not a toy guitar, after all a violin only has four strings and some of the greatest music written is played on it.
The other observation I have made in my musical journey is that folks who put an instrument down probably are musical snobs.
I know many guitar players that hold themselves out as some elite player. On the other hand some of the great professionals I have met encourage others to play.
Go to festival where some of the pros are and you will find them in the middle of the jam with us common folks.
James is a great example along with UU's own Aldrine, Matt D., The Dominator, Bartt and too many others to list in this post.

PhilUSAFRet
04-21-2011, 09:06 AM
Often these guys give you all the insight you need into their behavior, negating the usefulness of further argument, when they say:

"I JUST DON'T GET IT".

ichadwick
04-21-2011, 09:10 AM
...why I would bother with an instrument that "only" had four strings when I could enjoy doing so much more with a guitar.
A flute - the European orchestral kind - has a dozen holes and levers for creating notes. A Japanese shakuhachi has just four.

Would anyone argue that the music from the shakuhachi is less than, or in any way inferior to the western flute? It is in many ways a more difficult instrument to learn and play because you have to get a wide variety of sounds from only a limited number of holes, so the technique is subtle and challenging.

Same with the ukulele. The number of strings does not define the quality or complexity of the music it makes.

In both cases, it comes down to the person playing it who defines the quality of the sound.

You might ask him why, if more strings is better, he doesn't play a 10-string guitar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ten-string_guitar).

hoosierhiver
04-21-2011, 09:28 AM
Some people have low self esteem and always have to talk other people down to boost themselves up.
I think alot of them aren't even aware they do it.

mds725
04-21-2011, 09:31 AM
He proceeded to lecture me about why the guitar was superior/better than the ukulele and how he "just did not get it". He asked me why I would bother with an instrument that "only" had four strings when I could enjoy doing so much more with a guitar.

By his logic, a harp must be far superior to a guitar because it has many more strings. I don't recall anyone ever saying to Jimi Hendrix, "Why would you bother with an instrument that has only six strings when you could be doing so much more with a harp?"

Frankly, the only useful thing he seems to have said to you is that he "just did not get it." The "it" he doesn't get is that each instrument makes music and serves its own purposes. I agree with Natalie that if he doesn't appreciate the ukulele for the way it helps fellow musicians make music, then he's really no musician at all.

itsme
04-21-2011, 09:43 AM
Some people have low self esteem and always have to talk other people down to boost themselves up.
On the other hand, I think some people (who often just happen to be guitarists) have overly inflated egos and talk other people down because they genuinely feel superior.

I mean, everyone knows if you're the "lead guitarist" you're really the star of the band, and the rhythm player, bassist and drummer are all there just to back you up, right? :p

philpot
04-21-2011, 09:55 AM
I had a similar conversation with a guitar playing snob. I told him that I play guitar too, but I love ukulele as well. He gave the usual "more range, more versatility, blah blah blah" babble, I proceeded to introduce him to Jake and James Hill. I pointed out that they could do more on four strings then he could dream of doing on six. That shut him up pretty quick. Hes a convert now ;)

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 10:04 AM
Starting off as a bassist over 35 years ago, that is a battle that has gone on between bassists and guitarist since before I was even born. I also played guitar, so I got both sides, and never gave the bass a hard time over the string count war. But, I was in the middle of many of them. I could jam on the base better than many guitarists I played with over the years, and gained allot of respect because of that, but still had to jump into the argument when 6 stringers would gang up on a 4 stringer. That arument will never go away. Kinda like the oil and turf wars of the middle east. been going on the millinia, and will probably continue for another bunch of millinia. There simply is no end, and many 4 stringers don't get why 6 stringers are so high and mighty, and 6 stringers will also feel they are superior, and just "not git it" about the draw of the 4 stringers. Fortunatly, I don't care, because I get both. Tell your 6 string friends, you have a hard core guitarist that jams his Gibson Les Paul with his teenaged daughter on her Les Paul, in the same session as we jam on our lowly Ukuleles, and get as much, some cases more statifaction from it. If I had to give up my Les Paul, or My uke and was only to have one. Odds are, I would give up my Les Paul. So, there, from the perspective of a bassist/guitaist/Ukest. ;) just sayin..

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 10:10 AM
everyone knows if you're the "lead guitarist" you're really the star of the band, and the rhythm player, bassist and drummer are all there just to back you up, right? :p

When the conversation came up with me, playing Bass. I used to say that we all are like a big christmas Jello Mold. The Lead guitarist, vocals, keyboards were the peices of fruit & marshmellows, nuts etc that gave the jello mold a special little bonus. But, the bass and rhythem section was the jello that held all the other good stuff in the mold together. Without them (the jello), the rest was just a bowl of fruit that most wouldn't even pay any attension to. ;) that would most the time shut them up.. hehhe

philpot
04-21-2011, 10:10 AM
If I had to give up my Les Paul, or My uke and was only to have one. Odds are, I would give up my Les Paul. So, there, from the perspective of a bassist/guitaist/Ukest. ;) just sayin..

You could always "give up" that Les Paul right into my hands ;)

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 10:19 AM
You could always "give up" that Les Paul right into my hands ;)

well, if I had too. I would.. But, it is in the same catagory as my 9mm. You would have to pry both of them from my cold dead hands.. lol..

philpot
04-21-2011, 10:26 AM
well, if I had too. I would.. But, it is in the same catagory as my 9mm. You would have to pry both of them from my cold dead hands.. lol..

Good philosophy ;) I like to think of it as, you can have anything you want but my God, my family, my guns, and my instruments, in order of importance ;P try and take any of those away and I'll fight you for it.

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 10:29 AM
Good philosophy ;) I like to think of it as, you can have anything you want but my God, my family, my guns, and my instruments, in order of importance ;P try and take any of those away and I'll fight you for it.

Kinda weird that I group them like that too. Because, fortunatly, when I played people like to listen and I never had to resort to playing for them at gunpoint. But, not as good as I used to be either, so not ruling that out these days, hahhaha..

philpot
04-21-2011, 10:30 AM
Back on topic, musical snobs are the worst. So my advice is just to ignore him, or introduce him to some uke music thats different then what hes used to hearing. Thats the best way to go.

hobblecreek
04-21-2011, 10:32 AM
As I recall from my guitar-playing days, there seemed to be an abundance of need in various acoustic forums to justify the brand one had chosen vs. the other brands not purchased (Martin vs. Taylor vs. Gibson). Players would often argue back-and-forth for days and try to verbally prove their way of thinking, or they would try to wax poetic about how the tone of M was superior to T or the playability of T was so advanced over G, without realizing the subjectivity of the matter: we all have personal preferences and hear things or play things differently from each other.

A guitar player talking down to a uke player seems to be an extension of this.

At the end of the day, playing our instruments generally makes us happy let them rant and rave. We should walk away knowing well smile soon after getting home from work and picking up the uke. Lets keep the secret to ourselves.

veejayblox
04-21-2011, 10:35 AM
stings is strings. music is music. uke is uke.

SailingUke
04-21-2011, 10:41 AM
Same with the ukulele. The number of strings does not define the quality or complexity of the music it makes.

You might ask him why, if more strings is better, he doesn't play a 10-string guitar (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ten-string_guitar).

I was also thinking, he probably only plays 3 & 4 chord songs.

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 10:41 AM
As I recall from my guitar-playing days, there seemed to be an abundance of need in various acoustic forums to justify the brand one had chosen vs. the other brands

that is another long time argument. to me, it doesn't matter, play what you are led to, and drawn to, and what you play most comfortbaly. To me, instruments are a partnership, so you have to not only choose your instrument, it has to choose you too. It's a team. I play a Gibson, but I am not a Gibson snob. I also play an Epiphone. many of the headstock snobs shun Epiphone and say it's not a real Les paul, but sorry foke, it is and at least one of my epiphones will give any Gibson a run for their money in tone, and playability. I'll even put it up against my Gibson LP note and tone by note and tone. Also goes for Fender, Martin, and countless others. I love my Gibby LP, that is the one I choose, but it's because of the tones I get from it. Some songs sound better with a Fender strat, or teli tone, and for that, a Les paul simply wont do. I shun none of them, unless they are just junk (which there are those too). I find that none is any better than the other, but fits a need in tone, personal preference in playing, etc. The partnership between musician and instrument is what I key on, and if it is a Fender, use that, if it is Gibson, use that. If it is a 6 string guitar, play it, and play it like ya stole it. If it is a Ukulele, play it like you stoke that. Enjoy the relationship.

Bradford
04-21-2011, 10:44 AM
Some Native American flutes have 5 holes and some have 6. People assume the 6 hole flute is better; the fact is, they both play the same notes, just require different fingering. And ichadwick, just for your reference, the shakuhachi has 4 finger holes and a thumb hole.

Brad

AzMichael
04-21-2011, 10:55 AM
Although I am not a musician...

- Jack

Yes you are, and don't let anyone tell you different! You make music...that makes you a musician. Welcome to the club!

~Michael

JamieFromOntario
04-21-2011, 11:13 AM
This is a really interesting discussion.

I haven't had any experiences quite like what have been described here. But, I think that, not only is there often a bias for musicians to favour (yes, that's how is spelled) their own instrument to the detriment of others, there is an anti-uke sentiment out there that is based on people having a generally anti-hipster attitude. In other words, it's often just the squares being peeved that they aren't having as much fun as us ;)

Papa Tom
04-21-2011, 11:30 AM
I'd like to have actually heard this conversation taking place. If the tone of his comments was genuinely snobby or arrogant, I'd say you have a reason to be put off by him. But if he was just trying to stir up a friendly-but-heated conversation with a few casual, smart-ass remarks, perhaps you may be over-reacting? As a uke player, I find I am often on the defensive when I talk to people about my instrument. Most of the time, though, the defensiveness arises out of my own insecurity about the instrument and NOT out of any intention by the other person to piss me off.

haolejohn
04-21-2011, 11:30 AM
I had a very discouraging conversation with a coworker yesterday who I have talked to before about music theory. I made the comment about how much I enjoyed attending UkeFest a few weeks back. He proceeded to lecture me about why the guitar was superior/better than the ukulele and how he "just did not get it". He asked me why I would bother with an instrument that "only" had four strings when I could enjoy doing so much more with a guitar. I shared with him that the ukulele was very accessible to me and that it brought me enjoyment. I respectively told him that I understand that everybody has preferences regarding musical tastes, etc. and that I did not understand his need to educate me or get me to change my mind. I mentioned that it was just as silly as arguing about which is better, vanilla or chocolate ice-cream. It is a matter of tastes. Although I am not a musician, I expect that each instrument has advantages and disadvantages, and that all can be appreciated and valued in their own right. It just irritates me that he felt he had the right to make value judgments regarding my instrument choice and that he felt compelled to get me to "see the light".

Anyway, once I got home and started practicing Sentimental Journey on my Mainland tenor last night, I felt a lot better.

Sorry for ranting, I just needed to get this off my chest.

- Jack

what does he know? he plays a guitar:)

ksiegel
04-21-2011, 11:37 AM
I mean, everyone knows if you're the "lead guitarist" you're really the star of the band, and the rhythm player, bassist and drummer are all there just to back you up, right? :p

I wonder if Stanley Clarke and Victor Wooten would agree?

Oh yeah, and there's than other guy who plays bass... what's his name... Sting?

And (Going way back....) Remember who the bass player was for Kenny Rogers and the First Edition? (Yeah, long before the scary facelift....)

I forget... Who was the "star" in The Beatles? The Lead guitarist? Bass Player? Rhythm Guitarist? Drummer? And did any of the string players play ukulele?

I'm another guitar player who started playing uke, due to some mobility issues... And I feel that I am a better ukulele player after a few months than I was a guitar player after 40 years. I wish I'd started a long time ago.

-Kurt

(And I'm with everyone else - ignore the jerk. It reminds me of someone I spoke with years ago who laughed at anyone playing melodica or Accordian, but thought harmonica, concertina, or an old bellows organ were super cool. he never understood that he was talking about different forms of the same instrument.)

OldePhart
04-21-2011, 11:46 AM
Heh, heh. As a guitar, bass, ukulele, etc. player I always laugh when I hear about idiots like your coworker.

However, I always wonder why folks let that sort of idiot get under their skin. The moment you try to reason with them you have put yourself in their power.

I just laugh at them. The alternative is to argue with them and, as somebody once said, "arguing with a fool is dangerous; do it often enough and bystanders may not be able to distinguish between you!" (Okay, so that's a paraphrase but you get the idea.)

John

ksiegel
04-21-2011, 11:46 AM
what does he know? he plays a guitar:)

How many touring guitarists does it take to change a light bulb?

None: That's what roadies are for.

How many ukulele players does it take to change a light bulb?
If it needs to be changed, only one - but why not listen to the music by moonlight instead?


-Kurt

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 11:52 AM
How many ukulele players does it take to change a light bulb?


None, there are no lightbulbs in a camp fire.

ukejack82
04-21-2011, 11:59 AM
I'd like to have actually heard this conversation taking place. If the tone of his comments was genuinely snobby or arrogant, I'd say you have a reason to be put off by him. But if he was just trying to stir up a friendly-but-heated conversation with a few casual, smart-ass remarks, perhaps you may be over-reacting? As a uke player, I find I am often on the defensive when I talk to people about my instrument. Most of the time, though, the defensiveness arises out of my own insecurity about the instrument and NOT out of any intention by the other person to piss me off.

Papa Tom

I have worked with this guy for 25 years and I can say he was not purposely trying to be snobby or arrogant, he genuinely did not understand or get why I enjoy my ukulele and why I do not feel compelled to graduate to a real instrument (his words not mind). I have run into these sorts of people all my life and it really does not bother me when we don't see eye-to-eye. Our differences make life interesting and fun. I also don't need to be validated in my uke decision because I have personally experienced the joy, pleasure, and fun it brings me and my family (my only audience too date). What bothered me is that he felt he needed to convert me over, and spent a lot of time trying to do that. If he would have simply stated his preference for the guitar over that of the ukulele and why he enjoys playing guitar, it would have been a good discussion.

To the others,

Thanks so much for your comments and suggestions. One of the unanticipated benefits to the ukulele was the friendly and supportive community that I feel privileged to be a part of.

Cheers.

haolejohn
04-21-2011, 01:15 PM
How many touring guitarists does it take to change a light bulb?

None: That's what roadies are for.

How many ukulele players does it take to change a light bulb?
If it needs to be changed, only one - but why not listen to the music by moonlight instead?


-Kurt

I have never heard either one of those. 9i like the guitar one the most. It made me LOL!!

ksiegel
04-21-2011, 01:41 PM
None, there are no lightbulbs in a camp fire.

Well, yeah... they pop after a couple of minutes, don't they? (g)

-Kurt

Tudorp
04-21-2011, 01:43 PM
Well, yeah... they pop after a couple of minutes, don't they? (g)

-Kurt

yeah, they do, but much better if ya suringe a little gasoline into them.... I heard....

zac987
04-21-2011, 05:18 PM
He's right, instruments with 4 strings are entirely useless. For example: the violin. What has the violin ever done for music? And the mandolin, you say? Garbage.

:p

Teek
04-21-2011, 08:17 PM
If he says he doesn't get it, don't take it personally. Just convert him.

Pippin
04-21-2011, 09:28 PM
Papa Tom

I have worked with this guy for 25 years and I can say he was not purposely trying to be snobby or arrogant, he genuinely did not understand or get why I enjoy my ukulele and why I do not feel compelled to graduate to a real instrument (his words not mind). I have run into these sorts of people all my life and it really does not bother me when we don't see eye-to-eye. Our differences make life interesting and fun. I also don't need to be validated in my uke decision because I have personally experienced the joy, pleasure, and fun it brings me and my family (my only audience too date). What bothered me is that he felt he needed to convert me over, and spent a lot of time trying to do that. If he would have simply stated his preference for the guitar over that of the ukulele and why he enjoys playing guitar, it would have been a good discussion.

To the others,

Thanks so much for your comments and suggestions. One of the unanticipated benefits to the ukulele was the friendly and supportive community that I feel privileged to be a part of.

Cheers.

Show someone like that Jake's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" video and you'll see how fast he graduates to ukulele. :)

ItsAMeCasey
04-21-2011, 10:08 PM
You know, I had a similar convo with a friend recently. I had bought a Kanile'a tenor and went to his house to jam. He proceeded to lecture me about how the money spent on my beautful Kanile'a could have gone to a "real" instrument.

Papa Tom
04-22-2011, 01:15 AM
>>>>If he would have simply stated his preference for the guitar over that of the ukulele and why he enjoys playing guitar, it would have been a good discussion.<<<<<

Yeah, that's kind of what I was saying. Some people just don't have the social skills to be able to say it that way and, instead, go right to sarcasm and other annoying ways to express themselves. Your point is taken, but I'd try to be as tolerant of the guy as you can, lest he ruin another day for you down the line.

cb56
04-22-2011, 01:29 AM
Often these guys give you all the insight you need into their behavior, negating the usefulness of further argument, when they say:

"I JUST DON'T GET IT".
:agree:

If they don't get it they don't get it.
As long as you get it and enjoy it that's all that counts.

ksiegel
04-22-2011, 03:47 PM
I have never heard either one of those. 9i like the guitar one the most. It made me LOL!!

Neither had I - they just came to me while I was reading the thread.

(How many lead guitarists does it take to change a light bulb?
1- he plays a power chord, strikes a pose holding the buld to the socket, and the worked revolves around him.

How many Rhythm guitarists does it take to change a light bulb?

A Dozen - One to change the bulb, and 11 to asy "Wait a minute! Show Me That Again!" or "I was doing that back in the 60s,")

-Kurt

sonicbaker
04-22-2011, 03:56 PM
I happily play guitar (acoustic and electric), bass, uke, piano, synth, melodica, kazoo...whatever I can get my hands on, depending on what I'm feeling like doing. I think an instrument is an instrument. They do nothing by themselves. Its what the musician does with it (or gets out of it) that counts.

knadles
04-26-2011, 10:27 AM
As someone who has played music in some form for most of his life, I can tell you that the best musicians...the ones I respect and who "get it," never spend their time ripping down other people's music or instruments. Although some things may not be to everyone's taste, as you grow in music you tend to expand your horizons and find a trickle of beauty in almost everything. I've used kazoos on stage in a rock band. I've heard music played on a saw. I've attended performances of harpsichords and hurdy gurdies and bagpipes and African drum groups. I don't care what you're using...if it's a synth or a Stradivarius or a harmonica...if it's meaningful to you, you ARE a musician. And other musicians will appreciate that, even if it isn't something they themselves would choose to listen to.

Rock on man.

-Pete

Ron
04-26-2011, 12:33 PM
This topic arises about every 4 months doesn't it?

I reckon if a guitar player has a thing about string numbers ask them how is it that the four string violin family is so repected but ukuleles aren't. The ask whay they'd play a six string instrument when they could play sitar.
Then - walk away! ;-)

ksiegel
04-26-2011, 12:44 PM
There's always the nyckelharpa...


-Kurt

earljam
04-26-2011, 02:15 PM
As someone who has played music in some form for most of his life, I can tell you that the best musicians...the ones I respect and who "get it," never spend their time ripping down other people's music or instruments. Although some things may not be to everyone's taste, as you grow in music you tend to expand your horizons and find a trickle of beauty in almost everything. I've used kazoos on stage in a rock band. I've heard music played on a saw. I've attended performances of harpsichords and hurdy gurdies and bagpipes and African drum groups. I don't care what you're using...if it's a synth or a Stradivarius or a harmonica...if it's meaningful to you, you ARE a musician. And other musicians will appreciate that, even if it isn't something they themselves would choose to listen to.

Rock on man.

-Pete

Nice post. I don't see it as being about the instrument - the instrument is just something you let the music out of yourself through.

Danny Barnes of the Bad Livers had an interview years ago in the Banjo newsletter and mentioned this exact subject. Had a friend that was a great classical guitar player and didn't get the Banjo (always capitalize Banjo) at all. Said he could do anything a Banjo could do on his guitar as long as he had the music. So DB put the Earl Scruggs book in front of him with the music to Foggy Mountain Breakdown and laughed his ass off watching the guy try to sight read and play it.

itsme
04-26-2011, 02:59 PM
As someone who has played music in some form for most of his life, I can tell you that the best musicians...the ones I respect and who "get it," never spend their time ripping down other people's music or instruments. Although some things may not be to everyone's taste, as you grow in music you tend to expand your horizons and find a trickle of beauty in almost everything...

if it's a synth or a Stradivarius or a harmonica...if it's meaningful to you, you ARE a musician. And other musicians will appreciate that, even if it isn't something they themselves would choose to listen to.

Well, put, Pete! :)

I would never put down another musician for their choice of instrument or style of music or level of playing ability.

I totally respect anyone who is honestly interested in playing an instrument and makes an effort. That is what makes us "musicians" and not just someone who "plays" the stereo.

Sure, there are a lot of snobs out there, but I would never offer anything but encouragement to anyone who tries. We can't all be concert worthy classical musicians or hot shot rock stars. Yet, we can all feel the joy of playing and creating music, however humble. :)

Dolf
01-23-2012, 07:30 AM
Oh well. It's probably the kind of guy that think that there's a competition going on. It's a kind of stupid really, to think that four strings can't produce good music. I've been playing guitar for 25 years, by the way. The point is: it's not the amount of strings or the complexity of the instrument that makes beautifull music. It's who plays the instrument, and how good he is at it, and how much emotion he can put into his music.
Your coworker just don't get what music is about. Feel sorry for him. He probably can't help it.

efiscella
01-23-2012, 07:47 AM
One of my very good friends makes a very good living playing the Kazoo and teaching others to play the kazoo. Sure, he can play the guitar, banjo, and many other instruments, however, he tours the country in a one man show called Kazoobee and teaches thousands that they too can participate in the music, no matter who they are. His shows often sell out. I say, "To each his own and any judgements made should be made as a private individual preference, but not as a judgment against others and their choices". By the way, this friend did so well with his shows that he now owns a company that manufactures Kazoos.

Rubio MHS
01-23-2012, 08:05 AM
I have to admit to having similar feelings in the past. I put steel strings on my Eleuke pineapple and hooked it up to my Zoom G9.2tt, and I couldn't help but think, "why aren't I just playing the guitar?"

jackwhale
01-23-2012, 08:09 AM
As many have said here, 'Its really about the music not the instrument'.

hoosierhiver
01-23-2012, 08:12 AM
He's just trying to overcompensate for other inadequacies.

Plainsong
01-23-2012, 08:22 AM
He's just trying to overcompensate for other inadequacies.

Seriously this. I wouldn't have great expectations.

As everyone else has said, musicians are too busy making music to seriously give a rip what someone else plays. It's always the people with little to no interest in making music, who have the biggest mouths. It's like at a boarding stable, you have the stereotypical barn witch, always running and yelling at people and trying to bully everyone into feeling like crap... and they are the worst of worst, usually showing epic amounts of fear, with their own horses.

Remember that poor girl on UU, who was kicked out of a band for playing uke on her own time? How many famous rock stars would be kicked out of the same POS band for doing the same thing? Idiots..

And hey, just because I can't stand the sax, doesn't mean I'd seriously look down my nose at a sax player. Come on!

Rubio MHS
01-23-2012, 08:26 AM
What's the difference between a saxophone and a lawn mower?

You can tune a lawn mower.

MisterRios
01-23-2012, 09:13 PM
It's funny, I'm on the other side of this. I keep telling my brother-in-law how much guitars suck, and how he should play the uke- mind you, he's been playing guitar for like 20 years.

However, this past weekend, I visited a friend, and his daughter showed off her kid-sized guitar. It was huge, and heavy. Then he busted out with his electric/acoustic, and put it on me, I almost fell over from the weight. However, having experience on the uke made me understand the guitar. I was asking about the tuning and was trying out some chords.

I showed him how to play a C and an F chord on the uke, and he was completely blown away by the sound. So much so that he confessed that he always thought ukes were toys, but his mind was changed by mine (Ohana PK-25 pineapple with Martin Strings). He even asked where he could buy one, and I handed him a postcard of our local uke store (I always carry spares).

His daughter was also fascinated, and didn't want to let go of the uke after I taught her some chords.

In any case, maybe you can change your co-worker's mind by bringing in your uke, and letting him play it. Most people have only seen cheap ukes, but a good uke is enough to change people's minds. Especially if it is glossy.

Manalishi
01-24-2012, 12:21 AM
I was a guitarist in a former life,and love the guitar.BUT...
since I got my first ukulele,I gave away all of my guitars
(except one) and have only picked up my remaining one
ONCE for about ten minutes.Guitars just don't do it for me
anymore,gimme the ukulele every time!

bongolele
01-24-2012, 12:50 AM
I can see where he's coming from. I base my admiration of a musician not on their talent (or lack of), but where their chosen instrument sits in the pecking order.

The pecking order is determined by 'number of notes', cause it's hard to play instruments with lots of notes, right? - So pianos and harps are at the top and garner most respect. Further down you've got guitars, and then violins and bass guitars.

Ukes come next, followed by trumpets (they've only got three notes really - changing the way you blow is just an excuse)

Bottom of the list is the trombone (one note) - I look down my nose at trombonists all the time. :p

Chopped Liver
01-24-2012, 01:08 AM
Humph! :mad:

My suggestion? Whack him with your ukulele! :biglaugh:

OK, seriously, don't. You don't want to hurt your uke! :D

Pukulele Pete
01-24-2012, 01:14 AM
I've been playing guitar off and on since 1960 , I always thought of the ukulele as a silly kids toy , until a few years ago. I thought a uke was a silly waste of time. I knew I wanted something smaller to play and tried mandolin for a while , never even considered a uke , it was a kids toy. Wow, do I wish I tried the uke instead of the mandolin. My guitars sit in the closet now.

Olarte
01-24-2012, 02:51 AM
As a classical guitarist and a member of a family that has a long legacy in classical music, I can wholeheartedly say that the uke deserves, as much respect as any other instrument.

According to your friends views, the ore complicated the instrument the more musical it is?

What shout a violin, cello, bass, or even the timpani, or any single percussion instrument?

There is no this or that, I play classical guitar AND Ukulele, and can make whatever music I want on either. In classical arrangements are beautiful on the uke in their simplicity, sweet toneof the uke, and a remembrance of early guitar instruments like the lute, vihuela, and others.

Music is music from the simplicity of indigenous instruments like drums, simple flutes etc, to the classical orchestral instruments, to the complexity of electronic and digital instruments.

And while we all have different tastes it's only the ignorant who think of themselves as "musicians" who reject and criticize any instrument, or music that is not to their liking.

One of my biggest pet peeves is the idiotic comments that people make after attending a concert. The same people that would not have the ability to play like nearly as good as the ones they criticize or have the balls to be up there performing.

As much as I don't appreciate many types of music, I respect all music, and any honest effort that anyone makes to practice it, embrace it, and share it with others.

Ivan

douginnc
01-24-2012, 03:45 AM
Ian,

re your " it comes down to the person playing it who defines the quality of the sound." That's a tough one to live with! If it weren't for my effectiveness in other arenas, my uke'ing would only serve as a source of depression and fustration.

Pete:

re your "find the tickle of beauty" Such a marvelous phrase! It nails the compulsion underlying my "uke fixes" ... that brain shot that comes with a phrase or chord progression ...

Doug

mr moonlight
01-24-2012, 03:59 AM
I used to think that the uke wasn't taken seriously as an instrument, thus high quality uke's were readily not available. Then my friend showed that infamous Jake video and of course realized that there had to be professional quality uke's out there if someone is going to play like that.

So a few months later when I wanted an instrument I could teach my son to play, but didn't want him to start on some crappy kids sized guitar I realized that the uke would be perfect for that. What I didn't realize was how much I would enjoy playing one and that it would also be the perfect instrument to travel with. I take my uke everywhere which is something I could never do with my guitars.

....so guitar vs. uke... I love playing both and both have their strong points, but in a lot of ways, the uke wins out.

ukecantdothat
01-24-2012, 04:22 AM
I think I know this co-worker you're talking about! Is this him???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiXR9ggRdFI

dvep
01-24-2012, 04:49 AM
My musician, guitar-playing boyfriend: "I'm sorry, but I think the ukulele is just silly."

Me: "I'm sorry, but I think people who are snobs about guitars are just silly."

Point is, if someone is actually putting an effort into an instrument that makes them happy then I don't understand why people should knock them. I've heard beautiful and not-so-beautiful things come out of ukuleles; same with guitars. But both have great potential. Just keep being open to all music and let the snobs keep at their game...at a distance.

ukecantdothat
01-24-2012, 05:00 AM
But seriously folks... String bigotry? Really? He does have a point, though. Most ukers might tell him to go fly a kite, for instance, but a one string kite vs a two string delta wing stunt kite? Uker please! The two stringer can do all kinds of wonderful things in the air, while the one string, while beautiful perhaps, just floats there in the breeze. And a giant quad stringed foil kite? That takes real strength! What this guy really needs to be playing is a harp!

Strings for days! :nana:

douginnc
01-24-2012, 05:56 AM
Oh oh! This is delicious. Careful ukecandothat! Just as there are ukuleles and there are ukuleles, and not knowing the difference may underlie a snob's derision; there are one-string kites and there are one-string kites.

I've had many a 2- and 4-line stunt flyer get his nose in the air on my arrival on the field with my little fighter kite(s). Within 30 minutes, they are at my elbow wanting to know about it. They find out I'm flying with more freedom and with almost as much control as they are ... at 1/100th the cost and overhead.

Fighter kites ... the ukulele of kites!

Doug

Tootler
01-24-2012, 05:57 AM
He asked me why I would bother with an instrument that "only" had four strings when I could enjoy doing so much more with a guitar.



By his logic, a harp must be far superior to a guitar because it has many more strings. I don't recall anyone ever saying to Jimi Hendrix, "Why would you bother with an instrument that has only six strings when you could be doing so much more with a harp?"


Why stop at harp? How about a large piano accordion - 160 basses so at least 160 reeds there plus about 3.5 octaves on the right hand - say 42 keys each with four or five reed banks. that's another 200+ reeds total of about 370 reeds. Enough to satisfy anyone hooked on number of notes, I would have thought.


A flute - the European orchestral kind - has a dozen holes and levers for creating notes. A Japanese shakuhachi has just four.

Would anyone argue that the music from the shakuhachi is less than, or in any way inferior to the western flute? It is in many ways a more difficult instrument to learn and play because you have to get a wide variety of sounds from only a limited number of holes, so the technique is subtle and challenging.


My wooden flute has just six holes (one more than your shakuhachi (including the thumb hole) but I would not change it for any silver flute. Maybe more limited in one sense as it is essentially a diatonic instrument but it has a gorgeous tone.

As a recorder player, I have come across the "till they're ready for a proper instrument" many times - such folk simply don't understand and school music teachers are often the worst - not all, my daughters were taught recorder at school by a Jazz guitarist and he did all sorts of interesting arrangements for them and accompanied them on electric guitar. Interestingly, the descant (aka soprano) recorder, which most kids start on, is the most difficult of the four regular sized recorders to play well because breath pressure has to be just so if you are to play in tune. In a serious recorder group you aim to have your best players on descant.

I dislike these insidious comparisons. I play several instruments and they all have their own qualities and exploring them is part of the pleasure of playing them.

The UU member who got thrown out of a wind band for playing a uke in her own time must of had a very intolerant bandleader. I play in a wind band and we have both a concertina (which I play) and a piano accordion in the band and both add their own qualities to the overall sound the band makes. If someone came along wanting to play uke, I'm pretty sure our bandleader would accept it, though they may have to amplify to be heard. :cool:

Plainsong
01-24-2012, 07:31 AM
I can see where he's coming from. I base my admiration of a musician not on their talent (or lack of), but where their chosen instrument sits in the pecking order.

The pecking order is determined by 'number of notes', cause it's hard to play instruments with lots of notes, right? - So pianos and harps are at the top and garner most respect. Further down you've got guitars, and then violins and bass guitars.

Ukes come next, followed by trumpets (they've only got three notes really - changing the way you blow is just an excuse)

Bottom of the list is the trombone (one note) - I look down my nose at trombonists all the time. :p

You're joking, right? I mean I see the :p face, so you must be joking about trumpet having three notes and trombones having less. Please tell me you're joking, or I'm gonna lose faith in humanity!

Plainsong
01-24-2012, 07:39 AM
Amen about the recorder! There are some serious people doing some serious things on recorder. It's only schmucks and idiots who think of it as a toy. I've only got a plastic one ATM, but it's an Aulos and a gig-worthy one.

There was a head of a uke company on FB that just had to bash the recorder, so he pretty much lost my business.


Why stop at harp? How about a large piano accordion - 160 basses so at least 160 reeds there plus about 3.5 octaves on the right hand - say 42 keys each with four or five reed banks. that's another 200+ reeds total of about 370 reeds. Enough to satisfy anyone hooked on number of notes, I would have thought.



My wooden flute has just six holes (one more than your shakuhachi (including the thumb hole) but I would not change it for any silver flute. Maybe more limited in one sense as it is essentially a diatonic instrument but it has a gorgeous tone.

As a recorder player, I have come across the "till they're ready for a proper instrument" many times - such folk simply don't understand and school music teachers are often the worst - not all, my daughters were taught recorder at school by a Jazz guitarist and he did all sorts of interesting arrangements for them and accompanied them on electric guitar. Interestingly, the descant (aka soprano) recorder, which most kids start on, is the most difficult of the four regular sized recorders to play well because breath pressure has to be just so if you are to play in tune. In a serious recorder group you aim to have your best players on descant.

I dislike these insidious comparisons. I play several instruments and they all have their own qualities and exploring them is part of the pleasure of playing them.

The UU member who got thrown out of a wind band for playing a uke in her own time must of had a very intolerant bandleader. I play in a wind band and we have both a concertina (which I play) and a piano accordion in the band and both add their own qualities to the overall sound the band makes. If someone came along wanting to play uke, I'm pretty sure our bandleader would accept it, though they may have to amplify to be heard. :cool:

ChrisRCovington
01-24-2012, 07:49 AM
I tried a guitar and failed. I fell flat trying. My father has played guitar for a long time and I never was able to figure it out. The ukulele on the other hand I can play. What's funny is now that I have a few years ukulele-ing under my belt I've picked up a guitar again and had better success with it (not great but I can play a few songs without making the dogs howl). I'll stick to the ukulele.

ukecantdothat
01-24-2012, 07:23 PM
Oh oh! This is delicious. Careful ukecandothat! Just as there are ukuleles and there are ukuleles, and not knowing the difference may underlie a snob's derision; there are one-string kites and there are one-string kites... ...Fighter kites ... the ukulele of kites!

Doug
Sheesh! I never thunka that! I hear ya.

Hey... fighterkiteunderground.com! Let's do it!!!!!!!!! FU!!!! :smileybounce: