We used to think of hula dancers and grass skirts on the Hawaiian beaches when we thought of the ukulele, but in recent years the uke has become a pop sensation. The ukulele is a fairly new instrument only originating in Hawaii at the turn of the 19th century. Artists such as Roy Smeck and Tiny Tin made head way with the ukulele, but the Hawaiian native Israel Kamakawiwoʻole’s renditions of famous songs such as Somewhere Over The Rainbow brought more popularity to the uke in the 90s and 2000s. Contemporary original artists such as Ingrid Michelson and Vance Joy created more popularity and today many YouTube musicians have brought even more popularity to the ukulele and is currently a very popular instrument to learn.
Due to its simplicity, the ukulele is quick to learn in comparison to other fretted instruments. However, there’s still plenty of direction to provide students on the ukulele in terms of rhythm, and proper technique for optimal performance. We commonly see students start on the uke because they love the sound of it, but eventually move on to other instruments. It’s a great starter instrument. We also see many students of other instruments doubling up and taking ukulele lessons in addition to their main instrument.
The ukulele is simply a fun, small and inexpensive instrument that is very accessible to the non-musically trained and quick for those with prior music training to pick up.