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. On occasion, we 'play out' for charity events. 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:
"Last night, in a great evening complete with impromptu singalong audience of up to four people (!), we played a fine mix of tribute songs and potential gig book songs. We started with Urban Spaceman, for Stephen Hawking, continued with Happiness, for Ken Dodd, and even managed both Amarillo and Woolly Bully, for Jim Bowen. And who knew that Mr Bowen had been part of Peter Kay’s 2005 Amarillo recording? Google, apparently, under inquisition from Marion.
In our quest to liven up our gig list with audiences in mind, we had a good run through bits of Brungstrums 4 and 3 and some of the Bumper Book, with most of the candidate songs coming up to scratch. Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Exes and Ohs, Friday I’m in Love, Mamma Mia, L.O.V.E, Road Runner, Lola, and even rarities such as Always Look on the Bright Side of Life . . . plenty of choices for songs that people will know and that we enjoy playing. They won’t all go in, but it’s good to hear us play these well.
Next week, we’ll continue with the quest as we have a few more suggestions to try from other books that may prove suitable for gigs. If you want your favourite song to wow our audiences, come and have your say. If you can’t make it, let Jon or me know the song and we’ll try it and see how it goes.
Of course, the other side of this equation is that we will need to cut some songs from the book. We can still play them among ourselves, but we have already found that songs like You Say You Don’t Love Me – which we enjoy and we play well – leave audiences unmoved, and we regularly skip others that just don’t resonate. And that will never do. So, to quote Shakespeare's Caesar, "Beware the Ides of March". What would you slash from the current gig book? Let Jon or me know and we’ll add it to our deliberations.
There were 21 or so of us last night, ranging from founder members to near newcomers, so we are getting a good spread of people to help choose our future repertoire, and I think everyone had a good time as well. It would be even better if you came along, too. After all, the new pub remains brilliant.
I look forward to seeing you all soon."
Regular meeting: Every Wednesday at: The Kings Arms (24 St Mary’s Street, Bedford MK42 OAS)
7.30pm - 10pm.
All very welcome.