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PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 03:40 AM
What an amazing player! First heard of him when I bought the 'Art of Solo Ukulele' CD.

Anyone know what tuning he uses? I've seen him play Baritones & Tenors. Does he tune his Tenor's like a Baritone? Or is he just using Low G Strings? Anyone know if he has any instruction material?

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-01-2012, 05:00 AM
Gordon is a living treasure!

He uses Koaloha Tenors and Baritones. I believe his tenor is reentrant and his Baritone is tuned normally.

I first learned of and heard Gordon Mark play at the Captain's Galley in Waikiki in 1970. I was leaving for
Portland, OR in a day or 2 so I got his permission to tape record his performance the next night and
got as much as I could on a 60 min tape. The only lesson Gordon taught me that night can be found on
YouTube in his 2 minute finger-picking lesson. Check it out! (sorry I don't have the link for you)

That Fall I listened to the tape and tried to remember his fingerings/chording as I practiced.

OK, now it's been 40 years, and whenever possible, I try to make it to his local lessons in Kalihi when I'm
back home in Honolulu, on Tues evenings.

He did publish an instruction book(let) [in the 80's I think]. In it he uses his uniquely designed TAB.
It takes a while to comprehend the ukulele hieroglyphics but he tries to represent precisely what he does
as he plays his rendition of some wonderful songs.

I hope he will do more YouTube videos [actually, someone else will have to record him as he is not into
self-promotion] as he is well worth listening to and watching. He has a unique sound and style of play.
It's wonderfully full and mellow.

I could hope that everyone would 'discover' Gordon Mark and enjoy his contribution to ukulele playing.

keep uke'in',

PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 05:15 AM
Thanks Uncle Rod! Do you remember the name of his Book(let)?

Just ordered all of his CDs! Can't wait til they get here!

PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 06:26 AM
The only lesson Gordon taught me that night can be found on
YouTube in his 2 minute finger-picking lesson.

Here is the video


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=miNX6CCQV6g

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-01-2012, 08:06 AM
I haven't seen my copy in decades, so I don't remember its title.

If/when I find it I'll try to remember to PM you or start another thread.

I really enjoy listening to Gordon's playing. so soothing and seemingly effortless!

You will enjoy the CDs!

keep uke'in',

mm stan
05-01-2012, 08:27 AM
These days..Gordon teaches at a school too I think...and hangs out at Koaloha Factory...

PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 08:29 AM
These days..Gordon teaches at a school too I think...and hangs out at Koaloha Factory...

Aloha Stan! Do you know if the KoAloha factory sells his method book? Heard a few rumors they may have them there :)

mm stan
05-01-2012, 08:43 AM
Not sure...but he offer some to teach there too..give koaloha a call...if you want me to find out..let me know...MM

PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 09:14 AM
Not sure...but he offer some to teach there too..give koaloha a call...if you want me to find out..let me know...MM

Thanks, I sent them an email this morning asking if they had any of the "Koaloha Story" DVDs and any of Pop's CD's instock. I'll ask them about that too!

PoiDog
05-01-2012, 09:24 AM
I really do love how these incredible players are more than willing to share, and how simple their techniques usually are. Listening to the great ones play can be intimidating because it seems so incredibly complicated, but when stripped down, it's not. I can't remember who it was, but another old great laughingly said that you can do anything with an 'ukulele by using just two fingers on your strumming hand.

Of course, simple doesn't mean easy. But it just goes (again) to show just how democratic and approachable the 'ukulele is. If one is willing to put in even minimal effort, one will see results. The more effort, the greater the results.

I guess I gotta get practicing!

mm stan
05-01-2012, 09:52 AM
You know Gordon charges 45.00 per hour...but is happy to teach you.....I wish I could afford that...

PedalFreak
05-01-2012, 10:08 AM
You know Gordon charges 45.00 per hour...but is happy to teach you.....I wish I could afford that...

Like most people at his level, an hour lesson would probably give you enough to work on for at least a month :)

PoiDog
05-01-2012, 10:16 AM
You know Gordon charges 45.00 per hour...but is happy to teach you.....I wish I could afford that...

That's actually less than most hack guitar lessons cost here in LA!

But it makes me wonder ... $45 per hour works out to about 75 cents per minute. Does that mean I need to send Gordon a check for $1.50 for his fingerpick video? :P

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
05-01-2012, 10:52 AM
I've seen Gordon perform and I've also had lessons from him. Is teaching approach is very unique and I had trouble getting the hang of it at first. That's more my deficiency than his though. He is truly remarkable.

mm stan
05-01-2012, 12:38 PM
Like most people at his level, an hour lesson would probably give you enough to work on for at least a month :)
Yes he gives some arrangemments I think.....

misterpk
05-01-2012, 12:47 PM
Kalei Gamiao worked with him. He said that greatest lesson he learned from Gordon Mark was how to approach arranging music. If you listen to his stuff he has so many layers going on. Melodies and counter melodies. It's a pleasure to listen to!

coolkayaker1
05-01-2012, 01:00 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ua09ck2lWQY
A longer "cut" from Gordon's KoAloha video (same as one below for first 2:24 min).

Gordon was, surprisingly, playing a Kamaka on the PBS Kamaka special video (someone had it posted here, it's about 26 minutes). Gordon played a Kamaka. Guess he was just slummin' for a day. lol

PedalFreak
05-02-2012, 03:47 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ua09ck2lWQY
A longer "cut" from Gordon's KoAloha video (same as one below for first 2:24 min).

Gordon was, surprisingly, playing a Kamaka on the PBS Kamaka special video (someone had it posted here, it's about 26 minutes). Gordon played a Kamaka. Guess he was just slummin' for a day. lol

I think from what I've seen, Gordon plays a couple vintage Kamaka Baritones, but KoAloha Tenor & Concert ukes. One of the Kamaka's I saw an interview where he said it was his favorite and it never leaves Oahu :)

Thinker
05-04-2012, 07:29 AM
I love this forum! Sure enough - i was just about to post about him - and here's a thread right on topic and only a few days old!

Anyone know how to reach him? I'll be in HI this fall and I'd love to set something up.

PedalFreak
05-04-2012, 09:56 AM
I love this forum! Sure enough - i was just about to post about him - and here's a thread right on topic and only a few days old!

Anyone know how to reach him? I'll be in HI this fall and I'd love to set something up.

I just talked to KoAloha yesterday and they said that he is in the shop every day. Could call them and see. He also teaches every Tuesday night, but can't remember where.

coolkayaker1
05-04-2012, 11:07 AM
God, that's awesome, pfreak. Thanks. Next time I'm in Oahu, I'll set up a couple of lessons with him--even if I have to eat Spam and eggs for the entire week to save up for it. Gordon is, certainly, on the mark.

PedalFreak
05-04-2012, 11:48 AM
even if I have to eat Spam and eggs for the entire week to save up for it.

You say that like it's a bad thing :)

Canoe Lady
05-04-2012, 12:06 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ua09ck2lWQY
A longer "cut" from Gordon's KoAloha video (same as one below for first 2:24 min).

Gordon was, surprisingly, playing a Kamaka on the PBS Kamaka special video (someone had it posted here, it's about 26 minutes). Gordon played a Kamaka. Guess he was just slummin' for a day. lol

Did anyone else feel totally inadequate after seeing this?

Ok, back to practicing now.

PedalFreak
05-04-2012, 02:47 PM
Did anyone else feel totally inadequate after seeing this?

Ok, back to practicing now.

I thought he actually simplified it really nice. I just taught my Ukulele class this pattern tonight and pulled up this video for them all to see :)

coolkayaker1
05-04-2012, 03:28 PM
You say that like it's a bad thing :) good point

coolkayaker1
05-04-2012, 03:29 PM
I thought he actually simplified it really nice. I just taught my Ukulele class this pattern tonight and pulled up this video for them all to see :)

so, gordon taught ur class 2nite. lol

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-04-2012, 03:56 PM
Wow! 8 and a half minutes to ukulele heaven!

thanks for posting the video!

keep uke'in' everybody,

Canoe Lady
05-04-2012, 04:12 PM
I thought he actually simplified it really nice. I just taught my Ukulele class this pattern tonight and pulled up this video for them all to see :)

Yep, the pattern was not too bad to learn....it was the longer version....ya know where he made it all look soooo simple :)

Thinker
05-04-2012, 04:15 PM
Did anyone else feel totally inadequate after seeing this?

Ok, back to practicing now.

...ummmm Always!!

PedalFreak
05-05-2012, 08:51 AM
so, gordon taught ur class 2nite. lol

Yeah in a way. We were on our second class, and I was explaining how there are different strums that you can use, and how many different picking and strumming patterns there are. Then I described how I just learned a new finger picking technique from Gordon Mark's video. So I demonstrated it, letting the class know that I just learned it, then I pulled up the video for them to watch. I wanted to show them how one type of pattern can really make the song.

PedalFreak
05-21-2012, 09:55 AM
I ordered all of Gordon's CD's a few weeks ago, they arrived today! Oh My! If you like solo ukulele music do yourself a favor and pick these up. You can get them here: http://www.danielho.com/DHC/Order_Form.html

I've been playing them in our store all day, amazing music.

coolkayaker1
05-21-2012, 01:28 PM
I ordered all of Gordon's CD's a few weeks ago, they arrived today! Oh My! If you like solo ukulele music do yourself a favor and pick these up. You can get them here: http://www.danielho.com/DHC/Order_Form.html

I've been playing them in our store all day, amazing music.

Pedal, I like ukulele music without backing tracks or other instruments of any kind. Are all three of Gordon's CDs just ukulele? Which one do ou suggest? Thanks.

PedalFreak
05-21-2012, 01:33 PM
Pedal, I like ukulele music without backing tracks or other instruments of any kind. Are all three of Gordon's CDs just ukulele? Which one do ou suggest? Thanks.

Yes, all 3 of them are just Gordon and an ukulele :D If you can't get all 3 then I'd get Nohea (the first one) and then work through the rest of them. They are all quite amazing.

Doc_J
05-21-2012, 01:45 PM
Aren't Gordon's CDs also on iTunes ?

coolkayaker1
05-24-2012, 07:15 PM
Yes, all 3 of them are just Gordon and an ukulele :D If you can't get all 3 then I'd get Nohea (the first one) and then work through the rest of them. They are all quite amazing.

Will do. Thanks for the tip.

PedalFreak
05-25-2012, 01:27 AM
Aren't Gordon's CDs also on iTunes ?

Yes, but you don't get all the notes that are in the physical copy :)

cooldive
08-10-2017, 09:48 PM
Gordon is a living treasure!

He uses Koaloha Tenors and Baritones. I believe his tenor is reentrant and his Baritone is tuned normally.

I first learned of and heard Gordon Mark play at the Captain's Galley in Waikiki in 1970. I was leaving for
Portland, OR in a day or 2 so I got his permission to tape record his performance the next night and
got as much as I could on a 60 min tape. The only lesson Gordon taught me that night can be found on
YouTube in his 2 minute finger-picking lesson. Check it out! (sorry I don't have the link for you)

That Fall I listened to the tape and tried to remember his fingerings/chording as I practiced.

OK, now it's been 40 years, and whenever possible, I try to make it to his local lessons in Kalihi when I'm
back home in Honolulu, on Tues evenings.

He did publish an instruction book(let) [in the 80's I think]. In it he uses his uniquely designed TAB.
It takes a while to comprehend the ukulele hieroglyphics but he tries to represent precisely what he does
as he plays his rendition of some wonderful songs.

I hope he will do more YouTube videos [actually, someone else will have to record him as he is not into
self-promotion] as he is well worth listening to and watching. He has a unique sound and style of play.
It's wonderfully full and mellow.

I could hope that everyone would 'discover' Gordon Mark and enjoy his contribution to ukulele playing.

keep uke'in',

Sorry for tagging onto this old thread....

I really love the Gordon's style of playing harmonizing w only thumb and index.. Wondering if anyone has any idea where to find his method book? And I have checked itunes, it does carry his cds...

Can anyone help... thks thks

luv2uke
08-12-2017, 06:54 PM
Would love to find his method book also.
Here is a video of him playing Akaka Falls.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9sh0iFLw5TU

Uncle Rod Higuchi
08-14-2017, 09:19 AM
to my knowledge, Gordon hasn't published any music (written or printed or recorded) for a long time.
his most recent published works are his CDs - all Gordon, or featuring another artist or
included in a collection featuring many artists. What we see on YouTube are videos taken by his students and then shared via YT.

Gordon still gives lessons weekly (if not daily) and produces many instruction sheets for his
students. His music transcription method is very idiosyncratic and takes some time to gain
familiarity.

most recently, Aug 2, 7, and 9, 2017, Gordon gave free public lessons at the Ala Moana Center,
at Music4Life (unfortunately closing Aug 21st). I had the pleasure of attending them.

of course, all of this does not help you in your quest for Gordon's printed works.

I'm planning on sharing some of his worksheets with our group here in Seattle (STRUM -
Seattle's Totally Relaxed Ukulele Musicians) in the upcoming months. I may be persuaded
to share them with you all, but I will need to work on how to explain his transcriptions and
how to further instruct you on what to do as you progress from chord diagram to chord diagram, and from
line to line.

Be patient, and please contact me via ( rohiguchi@seattleschools,org ) if you're interested in being included in this project throughout the year ahead.
I'll need to get Gordon's permission, once I work up my 'explanations' before I can post them
for general consumption :)

I may also need to learn how to do accompanying MP3 files so anyone could hear as well as read
what to do.

til then, keep uke'in',
and pray that Gordon will give me permission to share his material with all of you :)

luv2uke
08-17-2017, 03:18 PM
Aloha Rod,
Yes, hope that Gordon gives you permission to share his music with us. Sign me up!
Mahalo.

cooldive
02-05-2018, 09:36 PM
Hi Uncle Rod...
It will really be great if you could share his notes and explanations w us... this will really help the community appreciate Gordon's beautiful style of playing. Hopefully Gordon gives you his blessings...
Mahalo....

Jarmo_S
02-06-2018, 05:16 AM
His technique is interesting and one I consider adapting if I start to "fingerpick" some day. I mostly consider ukulele a strumming instrument.
I know classical guitar pima -technique, pulgar being mainly restricted to bass strings.

But ukulele is not, to me, a classical guitar. Even pim-technique will bring some tensions to my right hand because of the way I hold my ukulele.

Mark's pi-technique with getting support from top with ring finger allows easy switch to powerful strumming with index or thumb and that support will keep my right hand relaxed when picking.