Welcome to Ukulele Bedford
We are a community ukulele group based (oddly enough!) around the Bedford area. We meet weekly at The Kings Arms (24 St Mary’s Street, Bedford MK42 OAS) on Wednesdays at 7.30pm, and 'play out' quite regularly. We are always delighted to see new members - so come along one evening and give it a try!
Always wanted to play an instrument? Try the ukulele! We welcome anyone, with any level of experience or expertise.
Just learning? Come on in. Been playing for years? Welcome - we'd love to benefit from your talents.
All you need is enthusiasm - we can even lend you a ukulele for the evening!
The short answer to that is "Anything the members of the group want to!". From 1930's tin-pan alley to jazz standards. From 60's novelty pop to 90's rock to last year's hits. Admittedly, when we try them we find that some things work better than others on massed ukuleles - but just trying to play the seemingly unsuitable can be great fun. And sometimes surprisingly successful.
Members old and new are always encouraged to select songs they'd like to try playing.
From the last meeting:
"A typically amiable and gentle group of 20 of us made suitably merry in the pub last night, with music ranging from the late Cretaceous to the new millennium. It’s a measure of how much music we have available and how far we have come that old staples like I’m Just Breezing Along With The Breeze from 1926 can rub shoulders with Madonna and the Rolling Stones. You can’t fault the breadth of our music.
Generally, our singing and playing were up to scratch as well, although we need to listen to one or two of our more recent arrivals to get closer to the originals – Dancing Queen for example – and will need to put a bit more oomph into some of our Gig Book songs before the Moggerhanger do. That’s the trouble with practice. What starts out as a challenge can become comfortable and before you know it we are more carpet slippers than Doc Martens.
Thank you to everyone who has said they can play on 10th August. The form is in, so it’s definitely happening. If it’s good weather, I gather that we could be looking at our largest audience ever, so we definitely need to leave those slippers at home.
Ukuleles are pretty reliable instruments. Beyond restringing occasionally and adding the odd strap button, I haven’t had to do much on any of mine. This is good because my tools of choice for most DIY operations are the mole wrench and the adjustable spanner, neither of which have the precision required. There are, however, a few things I could do with: I have an old banjolele that has really sharp fret ends, making playing it as painful for me as for listeners. If you have similar issues – instruments in need of repair of general fettlement – Rex has discovered a chap called Stuart Simms from Wootton who can do the job at a decent price. Rex has had three or four jobs done by him and recommends him highly. Find out more at www.stuartsimms.co.uk
Next week, we’ll either have a playlist from someone (yep, unsubtle hint time) or we’ll be asking for your contributions from the floor again. At the very least, come armed with choices. It makes the evening flow so much better. Open mic will be on 24th July this month, so you have plenty of time to practice.
I look forward to seeing you all next Wednesday."
Regular meeting: Every Wednesday at: The Kings Arms (24 St Mary’s Street, Bedford MK42 OAS)
7.30pm - 10pm.
All very welcome.