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Thread: Beginner Practice Sessions

  1. #1

    Default Beginner Practice Sessions

    I'm trying to come up with a "schedule" for practicing everyday and would like to come up with some things to go over everyday.

    I've downloaded the Jumping Flea Arpeggiator and Hanon for Ukulele. I also know of Uncle Rod's Boot Camp. And I've been doing Ukulele Mike's exercises for hand dexterity.

    Would these be good to work into daily practice sessions?
    And what else should I try to work in?

    I also use The Ukulele Way and have books like Ukulele Aerobics, Ukulele for Dummies (not exercises), The Quiet American books, James Hills' Booster Uke and The Daily Ukulele.

    I know basic chords but can't really figure out strumming patterns. And I'm having trouble barring and recently realized I'm not really holding my ukulele correctly (using left hand to support and having trouble correcting this).

    Any advice is appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    Pickering, ON, Canada
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    Default

    Well you certainty have a lot of material to choose from......I mean a lot. Maybe take a step back and figure out what type of songs or music you would like to play. I am guessing you are new to the uke as you are working on strumming patterns and barring techniques. That is ok because we are start at some point time......no one was born playing a musical instrument.

    It is easy to get caught up in wanting to improve and trying to do it all at once. Start with simple songs that you like having 3 - 6 chords and a simple strum pattern. When you have that one down pat move on to the next with 1 or 2 more chords. Your dexterity will come from continual practice of these songs. Uncle Rods Boot Camp is excellent because if you can go from 4 strums pre change to 1 strum your dexterity has improved immensely. Now throw in a metronome and you are on your way to greatness.

    No need to make is super complex or complicated with vast amounts of practice material when you are starting out. Walk.......then run.

    If you want to make barring really easy then get a strap
    Last edited by DownUpDave; 11-14-2016 at 01:14 PM.
    Currently enjoying these ukuleles : *LdfM tenor, *LfdM 19" super tenor. *LfdM baritone, *I'iwi tenor , *Koolau tenor, *Webber tenor, *Kimo tenor, *Kimo super concert, *Mya Moe baritone, *Kamaka baritone, *Gianinni baritone, *Fred Shields walnut pineapple super soprano, *Kala super soprano, *Loprinzi super soprano, *Black bear ULO concert , *Enya X1 concert, *Enya X1 pineapple soprano, *Enya Nova *Gretsch tenor, *Korala plastic concert

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
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    California
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    Yes you do have a huge amount of material that will keep you very occupied for a long time. DownUpDave gave great advice; I really think that in addition to doing all that technical practice, you should learn songs. By learning songs you could learn a ton of strumming patterns and a lot of different chords which can advance your playing progressively.

    But what is a good way to do that? Here on ukulele underground you can watch the aloha friday jams or go on youtube and join the aloha friday jam live every friday. Aldrine gives you the chords, strumming pattern, and sings along so you can keep time. But that's one suggestion to add to all your practice material. Do whatever is fun to you and keep getting better!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    I, like the OP, have downloaded so much material I don't know where to start, so THANKS for your answers. I am practicing songs and I need to dig out Uncle Rod's Boot Camp.
    Jan >^..^<
    (AKA Chopped Liver)


    You say 'Crazy Cat Lady' like it's a bad thing!

    "Out of clutter, find simplicity." Albert Einstein

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
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    I found what improved my 'playing' was to always have a uke out on a stand, & just pick it up & have a quick practice as you pass, it only needed to be a few minutes, but it worked for me.

    I didn't do any 'courses', just learned as I went, 'playing' songs that I already knew.

    What I did find that helped greatly, was joining in with the Seasons thread on here, it does take courage to post your first video, but they are such a friendly bunch, & you will improve just by doing.
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
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    Ames, Iowa
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    You are never going to get there if you don't know where you are going. I think that the most important thing is to determine where you want to go with your ukulele, and then head in that direction. Just accumulating a pile of resources and shoveling through it without any direction is not a good approach in my opinion.
    I don't want to live in a world that is linear.

    I just want everyone to understand that I am not a ukulele expert, even though it may look at times like I'm pretending to be.

    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...tective+Agency

  7. #7

    Default

    My main resource/goal is to get through The Ukulele Way. The rest I think of a supplements. I want to work on technical skills so that's why I've brought in things like Ukulele Aerobics and the others. I don't feel like I have no direction though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    You are never going to get there if you don't know where you are going. I think that the most important thing is to determine where you want to go with your ukulele, and then head in that direction. Just accumulating a pile of resources and shoveling through it without any direction is not a good approach in my opinion.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Cornwall UK
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    1,114

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    hi idxxoutoftheblue,

    I think acknowledging that there is a learning curve is important, and that you really need to focus on basic skills before moving on to other things. That way you will have a solid foundation to build on in the future. Using The Ukulele Way as your starting point seems like a good idea - I'm sure the lessons must be structured in such a way as to allow beginners to progess at a reasonable pace. And if you get stuck you can use your other materials to help supplement your learning.

    Boot camp is good for practicing chord changes and is definitely worth looking at.

    For strumming patterns I would suggest learning a 'swiss-army knife' strum to start (e.g. ddu-udu) and then picking up new ones as and when needed.

    Barring is hard, but it does get easier with practice (again, look at Boot Camp). You will probably find that your hand strength increases over time the more you play.

    Getting a strap is good advice - it will help you support the instrument properly and makes lots of other things a little bit easier too

  9. #9

    Default

    Thanks! I am able to pick up basic strums pretty easily, I just can't figure out which strum to use with a song on my own.
    Do you have any recommendations for straps?


    Quote Originally Posted by jollyboy View Post
    hi idxxoutoftheblue,

    I think acknowledging that there is a learning curve is important, and that you really need to focus on basic skills before moving on to other things. That way you will have a solid foundation to build on in the future. Using The Ukulele Way as your starting point seems like a good idea - I'm sure the lessons must be structured in such a way as to allow beginners to progess at a reasonable pace. And if you get stuck you can use your other materials to help supplement your learning.

    Boot camp is good for practicing chord changes and is definitely worth looking at.

    For strumming patterns I would suggest learning a 'swiss-army knife' strum to start (e.g. ddu-udu) and then picking up new ones as and when needed.

    Barring is hard, but it does get easier with practice (again, look at Boot Camp). You will probably find that your hand strength increases over time the more you play.

    Getting a strap is good advice - it will help you support the instrument properly and makes lots of other things a little bit easier too

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Ames, Iowa
    Posts
    4,248

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by idxxoutoftheblue View Post
    My main resource/goal is to get through The Ukulele Way. The rest I think of a supplements. I want to work on technical skills so that's why I've brought in things like Ukulele Aerobics and the others. I don't feel like I have no direction though.
    Cool, where do you see yourself next year this time?
    I don't want to live in a world that is linear.

    I just want everyone to understand that I am not a ukulele expert, even though it may look at times like I'm pretending to be.

    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...tective+Agency

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