Do you play the ukulele? Do you live in the Newark, Delaware area? Are you looking for a fun way to practice and share your passion? Why not come out to one of UUFN’s Ukulele Group meetings! This group meets on the first and the 3rd Tuesdays of each month from 6:00pm till 8:00 pm at UUFN. Usually in the Olympia Brown Room, but if we’re not there just listen for the familiar sound of the plucking of ukulele strings and you’ll find us! You do not need to be a member of UUFN to attend! All are welcome!
~ The Ukulele is a member of the lute family of instruments; it generally employs four nylon or gut strings or four courses of strings. Some strings may be paired in courses, giving the instrument a total of six or eight strings.
~ Ukuleles are generally made of wood, though variants have been composed partially or entirely of plastic or other materials. Cheaper ukuleles are generally made from plywood or laminate woods, in some cases with a soundboard of a tonewood such as spruce. More expensive ukuleles are made of solid hardwoods such as mahogany. The traditionally preferred wood for ukuleles is acacia koa.
~ The ukulele was popularized for a stateside audience during the Panama–Pacific International Exposition, held from spring to fall of 1915 in San Francisco. The Hawaiian Pavilion featured a guitar and ukulele ensemble, George E. K. Awai and his Royal Hawaiian Quartet, along with ukulele maker and player Jonah Kumalae. The popularity of the ensemble with visitors launched a fad for Hawaiian-themed songs among Tin Pan Alley songwriters.
~ From the late 1940s to the late 1960s, plastics manufacturer Mario Maccaferri turned out about 9 million inexpensive ukuleles.
~ After the 1960s, the ukulele declined in popularity until the late 1990s, when interest in the instrument reappeared. During the 1990s, new manufacturers began producing ukuleles and a new generation of musicians took up the instrument.
~ All-time best selling Hawaiian musician Israel Kamakawiwo’ole helped re-popularize the instrument, in particular with his 1993 reggae-rhythmed medley of “Over the Rainbow” and “What a Wonderful World,” used in films, television programs, and commercials.