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DKayne
04-18-2014, 07:16 AM
Some people say that the ukulele is a good “beginner” instrument – that it’s easy to pick up and start playing. I have found that, with instruction, I have been able to perform some patterns (like a basic blues pattern and the Ice Cream Pattern) that are quite helpful.

My question is this: how easy is it (for someone with no real prior musical instruction) for someone to also pick up the guitar and/or bass, using the ukulele as a foundation? Don’t get me wrong; I have no desire to give up the uke for guitar. It’s more of a curiosity question.

katysax
04-18-2014, 07:30 AM
Well, it's a lot easier to go the other direction. Ukulele will help you some with the guitar forms, but you'll need to transpose to another key and also add two strings. As far as bass, it's an easy transition from guitar if you know a little music theory.

If you learn certain basics, like how to read music, how to understand rhythm, how to understand chords and chord structure, it will help you a little with every instrument. You will have also developed some calluses and some ability to change chords fluently. From what you describe I'd say the degree to which that would help you on another instrument is very little.

WashAshore
04-18-2014, 09:24 AM
Going from the guitar to the Ukulele was an easy transition for me, except for barre chords. I have no
trouble with open chords except maybe the D chord which takes some concentration. After playing the
Uke for about a month my guitars feel like big heavy beasts with too many strings.

ukuleletim
04-19-2014, 04:51 AM
I think the ukulele is a good gateway instrument. Of course, going to any other instrument will take effort but playing ukulele first will/can give you a good foundation to begin with.

Like the others, I came from a guitar background and picking up the uke was a snap. But I do encourage you to try anything you can get your hands on! I love playing uke, too, but I will, and do, play many instruments mainly because I love making music and the variety of sounds available are irresistible to me.

gardens_guitar
04-19-2014, 12:53 PM
It might depend on what uke you start with. I got a baritone uke since I already owned a guitar I was in the process of learning. With a few exceptions, everything I learn on the baritone uke directly transfers to the guitar. And for the most part, I can ignore the two low strings on the guitar when transferring skills to the uke.

I must have a bug about this since yesterday, I purchased a Squier Vintage Modified Bass VI. It is a six string bass, E to e, and an octave lower than standard guitar tuning. Chord shapes etc are directly transferable to the guitar and it shares a lot in common with the baritone uke as well.

Now I just have to learn to play them. :cool:

bnolsen
04-19-2014, 02:16 PM
I must have a bug about this since yesterday, I purchased a Squier Vintage Modified Bass VI. It is a six string bass, E to e, and an octave lower than standard guitar tuning. Chord shapes etc are directly transferable to the guitar and it shares a lot in common with the baritone uke as well.

Now I just have to learn to play them. :cool:

Bass uses fingerstyle and sometimes picking, but it's pretty much play a single note instrument, not a chording one.

In a former life i was a gamba player, I mostly played bass parts. Several months ago after some serious sticker shock doing some gamba and cello shopping I decided to do electric bass myself. But just a plain 4 string pbass. Funny 'nuff I just recently spent more on a bass combo amp than I ever spent on any ukulele. I had been using some pos 6" 10W guitar amp...

Dulcilo
04-19-2014, 02:31 PM
Some people say that the ukulele is a good “beginner” instrument – that it’s easy to pick up and start playing. I have found that, with instruction, I have been able to perform some patterns (like a basic blues pattern and the Ice Cream Pattern) that are quite helpful.

My question is this: how easy is it (for someone with no real prior musical instruction) for someone to also pick up the guitar and/or bass, using the ukulele as a foundation? Don’t get me wrong; I have no desire to give up the uke for guitar. It’s more of a curiosity question.

I have no musical background except for playing mountain dulcimer (a very simple instrument with a diatonic fretboard) for several years. When I picked up a ukulele at a dulcimer festival, it just seemed like so much fun, I had to have one--so I bought the first one I saw--a mahogany top tenor Fluke. Now I own five other ukuleles--they multiplied much faster than my dulcimers--and have just ordered a Taylor GS Mini. The confidence I gained from ukulele made me think I might be able to wrap my fretting hand around a guitar after all--even at my advanced age. But I do think I'll take formal lessons for guitar, something I have never done before. I don't want to develop bad habits that end up causing me problems later. But all is just for fun and my own enjoyment. So much music, so little time...