John Dennis

Piano, Keyboard & Guitar  Tuition

Getting started

The ukulele is great if you've never played an instrument before.  It has only 4 strings (the guitar has 6) and they are made of nylon, which is a lot kinder on your finger tips than steel strings for someone new to playing a stringed instrument.  Because it has only 4 strings the chords are easier to play than the guitar - several chords only requiring one or two fingers.

If you already have some experience of playing the guitar you'll find many of the skills are easily transferable.

Above all, the ukulele is a fun instrument.  It's small, light and easy to carry around and with just a few chords you can play lots of songs.

Types of ukulele

There are several sizes of ukulele.  The smallest is the soprano.  This is the size most people associate with the ukulele.  Next up is the concert ukulele, which is also referred to as the alto.  This is a popular size as it has more depth than the soprano but is still a small instrument to carry around.  Next in size is the tenor ukulele.  This is a bit bigger than the concert so, again, has a bit more depth to the sound.  And finally there is the baritone ukulele.  This has a deeper sound but loses some of the bright quality associated with the ukulele.

There are some other ukulele types but the above are the most common.

Strumming or fingerpicking

As for the guitar, you can play the ukulele by just strumming chords.  This is a popular way of playing the instrument and is great for accompanying yourself singing or other instrumentalists playing a melody.

With the fingerpicking style you use your individual right hand fingers to pluck each string separately.  With this technique you can pick out melodies and build up interesting accompaniment patterns bringing variety to your playing. 

Working... Please wait