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Thread: Playing Classical Music-Linear or Re-Entrant, which is best?

  1. #11
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    Apr 2016
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    When I'm playing classical on the uke it's pretty free form- taking classical melodies and perhaps chord structure then seeing where the uke takes them. Both re-entrant and linear are good avenues to get there. It's a good question because at times I ask myself why I'm laboring to play a certain piece on uke that would be much better realized on guitar. The uke just holds a certain appeal that I haven't quite figured out.
    "Everyone I know who is into the Ukulele is 'crackers' so get yourself a few and enjoy yourselves" - George Harrison


    the ukes and year of acquisition:
    Pono RTSH-C-PC Cedar/Rosewood tenor 2016
    Koaloha KSM-02 Koa longneck soprano 2016
    Blackbird Farallon with sound port 2017
    2008 Kiwaya KTC-02 Mahogany concert 2018
    aNueNue Moonbird Spruce/Rosewood concert 2018

  2. #12
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    When I started playing uke, one of the things I did was look up what people were playing on the uke. I found quite a few playing early music on the uke and it works very well. When you consider that the uke is similar in size to many of the early string instruments, it shouldn't be a surprise. I go to early music events (mainly as a recorder player) and There are often lutes, gitterns, early guitars etc, there and I have occasionally taken my 6 or 8 string tenor and it doesn't really sound out of place. I'm more a strummer which is not really appropriate for early music though but I have used it to accompany myself singing popular song from the 16th to 18th centuries and it's gone down pretty well.

    For renaissance music on ukulele, look up ukeval on You Tube. He's very good.
    Geoff Walker

    I have several ukuleles in various sizes and am not planning on getting any more...

    at least, not yet.

    I also play some blowy things and a squeezy thing

    Internet:
    You Tube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/TootlinGeoff
    Soundcloud: http://soundcloud.com/tootlingeoff

  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    I am not asking this to put anyone on the spot or be judgmental, and I do not want to force anyone to justify themselves, because they do not have to. I'm a believer that people can do whatever they want and that they do not need a reason to do it. The thing that I wonder is why one would choose a ukulele to play classical music, which in all likelihood was not in any way composed with ukuele in mind. Ukulele just isn't a classical instrument. Is it the challenge, the novelty, or that one does not feel confident learning to play an instrument more associated with classical music? Is it that one is called to legitimize the ukuele as an instrument more associated with classical music? I am asking this because I myself am conflicted. I'm becoming more and more interested in bluegrass music, and I am seriously thinking about concentrating on an instrument more associated with bluegrass instead of making a futile attempt to some how make the the ukuele fit into bluegrass. So I ask the question to find out why one would go this route. Perhaps it would help me decide which fork in the road to take in my own journey.
    I want to learn bluegrass more too, but just don't have the hand size to play a banjo which is what I really like. I've thought about mandolin, but since I have the uke now, figure I should at least see if I can become competent on that before switching instruments. I have two concerts (did a trade for the tenor that was just too big) and both are tuned low g. I'm partway through dueling banjos.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joyful Uke View Post
    I'm only playing for a hobby, not to perform for others. So why not play classical music on a ukulele?
    What would be the right instrument for playing classical music? (Especially when playing on your own, not as part of an ensemble.)

    I play a variety of music, but do play some classical. If I'm having fun, I figure it's all OK, even if the composer didn't write it for ukulele. Good music is good music.

    I love the diversity of opinion here.

    BTW, there is a lot of diversity in bluegrass, too, unless you're just focused on traditional bluegrass. Offhand, I can't think of an established bluegrass musician who uses a ukulele for bluegrass, but next time I fall down the YouTube rabbit hole, maybe I'll see if I can find something. Could be fun.
    I can't think of any reason not to play classical music on the ukulele. I was only wondering if there was a reason that people chose the ukulele to play it. And as I said, there doesn't have to be a reason if someone just feels like it. I was at a ukulele festival last weekend and a woman there gave a nice talk on the history of ukuele in bluegrass, and there are instances of it back at one time or another, but from my understanding they were more for novelty than as a real part of bluegrass. Back to classical music, when people say that they like to play classical music, are you talking about Bach and Beethoven, or are you talking about traditional classical guitar music? I actually started playing classical guitar for a few months before I discovered the ukuele. That is a story in itself. I quit classical guitar the day I took my first ukulele home and never picked up the guitar again.

    Quote Originally Posted by captain-janeway View Post
    I want to learn bluegrass more too, but just don't have the hand size to play a banjo which is what I really like. I've thought about mandolin, but since I have the uke now, figure I should at least see if I can become competent on that before switching instruments. I have two concerts (did a trade for the tenor that was just too big) and both are tuned low g. I'm partway through dueling banjos.
    I'm torn between guitar and fiddle. Mostly because my wife has a guitar down in the basement and that would be handy, and my grandfather was a fiddler back in the 20s and 30s, so I often times think that would be fun. I have his old fiddle that he brought back from Europe after WWI, and I would really like to play it, but it is pretty fragile at this point. I took it to a violin luthier and he shot me an estimate of $500 to get it back in playing order. I'll pass. Frankly, I get on a bluegrass kick for a while and then get off it for a long time. I doubt that it will ever really happen.
    I don't want to live in a world that is linear.

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

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    I'm torn between guitar and fiddle. Mostly because my wife has a guitar down in the basement and that would be handy, and my grandfather was a fiddler back in the 20s and 30s, so I often times think that would be fun. I have his old fiddle that he brought back from Europe after WWI, and I would really like to play it, but it is pretty fragile at this point. I took it to a violin luthier and he shot me an estimate of $500 to get it back in playing order. I'll pass. Frankly, I get on a bluegrass kick for a while and then get off it for a long time. I doubt that it will ever really happen.
    I'd love to do fiddle too. Was doing some family history study and found I had relatives who were both drummers and fiddlers in the Civil War. Picking up a first instrument in late 50s is probably not conducive to something like the fiddle. I love Alison Krauss' versions of "Beaumont Rag" and "Windy City Rag." They discovered her for her fiddle, but when she opened her mouth it made her a star

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    Back to classical music, when people say that they like to play classical music, are you talking about Bach and Beethoven, or are you talking about traditional classical guitar music? I actually started playing classical guitar for a few months before I discovered the ukuele. That is a story in itself. I quit classical guitar the day I took my first ukulele home and never picked up the guitar again.
    What I mean for me, (others may have a different response): Classical = Bach, Beethoven, and so on.

    I don't want to hijack the thread, but why did you never pick up guitar again?
    I always wanted to play bluegrass guitar, but alas, injuries to my hands mean I need to be happy with ukulele - and I am. Nothing like a good fiddler, too, but I understand you passing on that repair bill.

  7. #17
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    [QUOTE=captain-janeway;2107590 I love Alison Krauss' versions of "Beaumont Rag" and "Windy City Rag." They discovered her for her fiddle, but when she opened her mouth it made her a star[/QUOTE]

    Ohhh, I love Alison Krauss. It doesn't help the OP, but I bet she can play ukulele too, and classical as well.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill1 View Post
    The gatekeepers for "Classical Music" and "Bluegrass" may not think you can get into their world, but who really cares about that if you are playing for recreation and you are learning about musical stuff? It may be a bit harder to accept if you want to get paid or if your ego needs to be accepted into the musical world of these genres and if you do want to be accepted, apply what you learn about the music on an instrument which does fit in so you can get paid or be accepted, there is no real value in playing the ukulele martyr all the time.
    I'm guessing that most of us here are mostly playing for our own enjoyment, not for pay or to be accepted by any group of musicians. At least, that's certainly the case for me. No one would pay me, or accept my playing.

    For those of us who are mostly learning from tabs, there are some books by Tony Mizen that might be worth mentioning here. Some nice arrangements of some classical music.

  9. #19
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    I play only classical. Sorry, but you need both.
    If everybody wanted peace instead of another TV, then there would be peace.
    -John Lennon-

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    ... when people say that they like to play classical music, are you talking about Bach and Beethoven, or are you talking about traditional classical guitar music?
    I play some classical guitar music on the ukulele, but I play more orchestral, piano, organ, even choral music. Just for clarification, I play mostly baroque which is pre-classical guitar. In fact, I don't think I play anything that isn't pre-ukulele.
    If everybody wanted peace instead of another TV, then there would be peace.
    -John Lennon-

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