The Ukulele – Much More than a Gateway Drug to the Guitar
For too long the ukulele has been cited as an easier option when it comes to learning an instrument, when compared with the guitar. Whether this is true or not is simply irrelevant, as the ukulele is capable of holding its own and more as a stand-alone instrument. Plenty of musicians at different stages of their careers have tried to pick up the ukulele, in the hope that it might lead them on to the guitar. This usually goes one of two ways. Either they realise that learning to play the ukulele is a lot more difficult than they’d originally imagined, and subsequently give up, or they fall in love with the instrument they initially saw as a mere gateway to the much hallowed world of the guitar.
When they give up on the dream, they have to admit to themselves that the endeavour was much more of a challenge than they’d like to admit. The plus side of this is that they usually develop a new found fondness and appreciation of ukulele music and not just for that of George Formby either. You don’t have to be a fan of cleaning windows to listen to ukulele music and you don’t have to limit your taste to the 50s and the 60s either. There’s a wealth of material out there once you develop the thirst to discover it…
In the other examples, where they learn to play the ukulele and fall in love with this wonderful instrument based on its own merit, the possibilities are limitless. The songwriting possibilities are huge with the ukulele, and artists can quickly develop a hefty catalogue of songs due to its versatility and the ‘catchiness’ of the riffs. The cost of the instrument, usually cheaper than a guitar, is a draw as well, meaning that a range of ukuleles can be tried and tested, before a favourite is decided upon.
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