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View Full Version : Uke leads to Flute neglect



fretie
03-05-2012, 04:20 PM
I have such a bad case of uke love that I am now completely neglecting my bamboo flute. I have been taking flute lessons for the past three years and, though I started to learn the flute with high hopes of mastering the basics so I could play the classic pieces at a engaging level, I am now sorely tempted to abandon my flute playing completely to pursue my ukulele love.

Let me explain a little further; you see the Japanese bamboo flute is a hard instrument to learn. And to our western ears, the traditional bamboo flute music can sound somewhat out of pitch and, at times, even discordant. The notes are tough to produce let alone get into the correct pitch. The music often moves from low soft tones to high pitched shrill notes with little warning. The flute is a beast to learn to play, takes enormous effort and discipline on my part to practice and gives musical returns very slowly and somewhat painfully.

I took up the uke as a bit of a lark because I had friends who were into it already. Within weeks I was loving how melodic and gentle the ukulele sound was and soon I found myself lost in hours of play. It took no effort or willpower to pick up the uke and practice. It was such a joy to play.

Now all I want to do is play my uke. For a while the uke was my 'reward' for practicing my flute. And now, well.....now, I have stopped playing my flute totally. I just can no longer force myself to spend the grueling hours to create very crude renditions of the traditional pieces when I could be playing joyful, interesting and delightful music on the ukulele.

Honestly, I've gone so far as to cancel my flute lessons....at least temporarily. But I didn't have the heart to tell my flute teacher that I had a new love.....I'll have to break it to him sometime soon....honesty is always best....eh?

I do feel a little sad when I see the flute sitting alone, neglected. And I wonder about those hours of practice, the years I invested in lessons. Had I found the uke first I would likely have never even started with the flute.

Confession over. It has been said. Feeling slightly better having shared this with you...I say, for those that found uke before all other instruements, lucky you!

mm stan
03-05-2012, 04:22 PM
Always wanted to buy a japanese bamboo Flute... I know it is hard to manipulate the correct tone out of that darn thing.. I should check into that...thanks

grandpoobah
03-05-2012, 07:03 PM
Bah. You will pick it up again. As long as you are involved in an instrument you'll continue to become a stronger musician. Abilities often transfer between instruments, especially when you pick up more music theory. Lots of us like the Uke just because it's so simple. There is an elegance to it in that simplicity, and that is one of its many appeals. I can learn songs quickly on it and they sound good. What's not to like?
From playing Uke, I can now actually play a keyboard if I stop and think about what I mean to do. Obviously the flute is very different, but if you tinker with it from time to time you'll protect the skills you have and come back to it when you want to.
I play the uke because it's fun. The day it stops being fun, I'll gladly give it up.

fretie
03-06-2012, 05:06 AM
Well said, grandpoobah, thanks!

OldePhart
03-06-2012, 06:13 AM
Yep. Uke causes flute neglect, guitar neglect, harp neglect... :)

Tootler
03-06-2012, 07:27 AM
Yep. Uke causes flute neglect, guitar neglect, harp neglect... :)

Not forgetting concertina neglect

grandpoobah
03-06-2012, 07:28 AM
Not forgetting concertina neglect

some would claim spousal neglect..

fretie
03-06-2012, 10:46 AM
some would claim spousal neglect..

ouch! That'd be crossing the line...

Hippie Dribble
03-06-2012, 10:51 AM
personal hygiene neglect, domestic duties neglect, work neglect, bill paying neglect, social interaction neglect....

OldePhart
03-06-2012, 11:55 AM
personal hygiene neglect,....

Eeeewwwwee. That's sharing just a little too much, Jon! LOL

allanr
03-06-2012, 04:26 PM
My flute is also suffering from neglect. As are my congas and bongos. The harmonicas still get some play, but not as much. And the guitars are actually getting played MORE now that the mighty little uke has improved my ability to move around a fretboard. Yay Uke!!!

Spousal neglect was corrected by getting the spouse hooked on uke too --- and thus piano neglect from her :p

Bradford
03-06-2012, 04:57 PM
As a compromise, you may wish to try a Native American flute. As you know, the shakuhachi is as difficult an instrument as there is, the NAF is very easy to play, like the ukulele. And like the ukulele it is capable of great virtuosity.

Brad

fretie
03-06-2012, 05:53 PM
As a compromise, you may wish to try a Native American flute. As you know, the shakuhachi is as difficult an instrument as there is, the NAF is very easy to play, like the ukulele. And like the ukulele it is capable of great virtuosity.

Brad

yes, NAF, that's where I should've started with my flute playing...shesh....it is the difficulty of the shakuhachi that has worn me down, in part, and the friendliness of the uke that has won me over.

OldePhart
03-07-2012, 07:06 AM
As a compromise, you may wish to try a Native American flute. As you know, the shakuhachi is as difficult an instrument as there is, the NAF is very easy to play, like the ukulele. And like the ukulele it is capable of great virtuosity.

Brad
NAFs are great, I have several, they aren't immune to neglect once one takes up the uke... LOL