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Thread: How to make ukulele instrumentals?

  1. #1
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    Default How to make ukulele instrumentals?

    Iwas wondering how i would go about making a solo ukulele piece on songs. Also how would i manage to put the vocal line into this arrangement.
    I had an idea to use piano sheet music made of popular songs and then put it onto ukulele. But im not sure if this is the right method and if it will fit the ukuleles pitch range.
    Ukulele is more than just a hobby. Its a way of life.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsMrPitchy View Post
    Iwas wondering how i would go about making a solo ukulele piece on songs. Also how would i manage to put the vocal line into this arrangement.
    I had an idea to use piano sheet music made of popular songs and then put it onto ukulele. But im not sure if this is the right method and if it will fit the ukuleles pitch range.
    You can use piano (or any other music with the melody score), but since chord charts are so easy to lay your hands on from places like Chordie, I just usually start playing the chords and then by trial and error figure out the melody inside the chords. The melody is almost always about 3/4 in the chord's notes. The rest of the time its just a few fingers or frets up or down from one of the chord's fingered notes. I find that noodling around that way helps me learn the song better than reading off of fingerpicking tabs. Its really not hard once you get the hang of it, but it does take a lot of time to figure it out.

    There are also several books out on how to create "chord solos," and Aldrine even has video. Here are a couple of references to that:

    http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/fo...gerpicking-Fun

    http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/fo...y-an-strumming

  3. #3
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    I agree with SweetWaterBlue... I start with the chords, and find the melody line within them, using the rest of the chord for the harmony. I usually try and write it down, using Guitar Pro software, which will generate musical notation, tabs, and chord diagrams for you. You can click on a virtual fretboard to enter the notes, or click on the tab staff and enter numbers or enter notes on the musical notation staff. Guitar Pro can play it back in midi for you so you can check the note durations. If you have a good memory, then you won't need to write it down... but I found it was helpful to have it down on paper so I could concentrate on practicing after arranging the song. If you have experience writing musical notation, you could just write it out by hand on pages with preprinted staffs, which might be faster.


    –Lori

  4. #4
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    Something else to suggest, have you heard of the book "Ukulele Fretboard Roadmaps"? I highly recommend it to work through and help you understand the music theory behind the chords and such...I'm only on "Roadmap #3" but there is a group that I run in the groups section (http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/fo...hp?groupid=156) that is for people learning through the book..Just an idea as it does say in the book that if you're interested in soloing, the book is for you...
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  5. #5
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    Thank you for all the replys everyone. Im going to try the various techniques and see which one works best.
    Ukulele is more than just a hobby. Its a way of life.

  6. #6
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    MuseScore is free online and easy to use.

  7. #7
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    As Lori said, it does help to write the song down as you are figuring it out. That way you can practice it later. I can't tell you how many songs I have figured out parts of when I am noodling around, then failed to write tabs for. They are generally forgotten and never to be played again by me.

    I sometimes use TuxGuitar to do this, or even Impro-Visor (both free) if I want a score and a backing track too. However, it is much faster and human-friendly (for me) to just draw four horizontal lines on a sheet of paper and start tabbing with a pencil as I go. I find the computer sometimes interferes with the creative process. However, the software is handy if you don't know the melody because you can input notes and then listen to the MIDI playing to see how it sounds. You can even input notes from old song sheets to learn new melodies that way. Or... you could learn to play the piano lol.

    If you want to get really fancy-schmancy, print out a bunch of these and keep them handy:

    http://liveukulele.com/wp-content/up...-tab-sheet.pdf

    or even:

    http://freeblanksheetmusic.org/mando...d-notation.pdf
    Last edited by SweetWaterBlue; 02-20-2011 at 03:16 AM.

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