Archive for the ‘ukelele’ Category

Xmas Final.jpg

Merry Xmas to all, and to all an extremely frustrating dive into split-screen editing!

But really though, making this video was a bit of a pain. I had all these lofty ambitions of shooting B-Roll of Christmas lights and Santas Claus and my dog running through the snow, but once I started toying around with the screen-in-screen nonsense I knew that my eyes were bigger than my stomach. Plus, we have no snow for Ghost to run through. Thanks Obama (note: I don’t actually think it’s Obama’s fault).

Ever since I started making these Ukulele covers FOUR YEARS AGO (tempis fugit) I’ve wanted to release a Christmas song. I came close a while back with Auld Lang Syne, but that didn’t turn out that well.

*Tangent* about a year after shooting that video I was at a party where this woman was talking about a New Year’s Eve where she went to a pig roast and there was this guy playing crappy ukulele songs.

Me: In Sugar House?

Her: Yup.

Me: Yeah…I was that guy.

*/Tangent*

Anyway, I grew up in the 90s so Blues Traveler is a thing for me (dat harmonica doe!) . That includes “Christmas,” their pan-holiday single from 1997.

I’ve been rocking out to this song every winter since I was in junior high school, and about a month ago started entertaining the idea of recording a One Wood Uke version.

I dig any time I get to harmonize with myself (it turns out I’m the perfect duet partner…for me) and Christmas has that in spades. I actually had to dial down the number of tracks since BT goes kind of crazy toward the end of the song and my limited editing ability couldn’t match it.

Enjoy! As always it’s available at my bandcamp site for a free download. No Xmas 2015 mix is complete without it!

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

10553410_10204449416380343_7121517607838412198_n

A while back me and my friend Jordan decided to take a little road trip around the intermountain west. We hit Goblin Valley, Monument Valley, Horseshoe Bend and Zion National Park, stopping to take some pictures along the way.

When we got into Zion, Jordan had the idea to rig up some GoPros and film a little music video, so we attached 3 cameras to his car and drove through the park uke-ing a cover of Margot & The Nuclear So and So’s.

We didn’t have any microphones to pick up the audio, so everything you hear is native to the video, which as you can see from Jordan’s wardrobe we shot just prior to robbing a stagecoach (I kid. In actuality, he suffers from fotografizophobia and the bandana helps him keep the anxiety at bay).

While watching, please keep in mind that neither of us had showered in a couple of days, and that the GoPro’s wide lens makes my nose look even more distinguished than it actually is (in college, there was a girl who knew me only as “Hot Jewish Guy.” I’ll take the compliment).

Also, if you don’t know Margot I would highly recommend checking them out. ‘Broadripple’ is one of their best but they’ve got a lot of great stuff.

Read Full Post »

533406_4273305635757_1901108619_n

I’ve been hearing all my life how similar I am to my brother Jake, who is nine years older than me. I could point to several key differences (he’s an extrovert, I’m an introvert) but from an observational standpoint I’ve been told that we look the same, walk the same, talk the same, act the same and dress the same.

Again, I don’t know about any of that but one thing we do have in common is ukulele-playing (although technically, I started uke-ing first).

Jake was the lead singer of Dishwoody and the Burritos in his younger years and has always had a better hand at songwriting than I have. That’s because I can’t write songs at all, and have thus accepted my lot in life as a cover artist.

Anyway, the other night Jake stopped by for a late night jam so we could record a song he had written for his wife as an anniversary gift. It was already late-ish when we got started so in a little over an hour we rehearsed, recorded and edited the song and an accompanying YouTube video.

It turned out pretty good for a smash and grab job and it was kind of nice to be on backup vocals for a change (you’re all very welcome).

Here’s the video below and since no one downloads these songs but my mom anyway, you can pick up a free copy on my Bandcamp page (where there’s also mine and Jake’s Beyonce cover).

Enjoy.

Read Full Post »

Ukulele

The average high in Salt Lake City for the last week was 96 degrees. It hit triple digits on Wednesday (102) and at night we’ve been lucky if the low gets down into the low 70s. I have a window box air conditioning unit in my living room, but the cool air doesn’t quite make it to my bedroom before being beaten down by the oppressive heat.

That’s my long-winded way of saying I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately. And what is an amateur ukulelist with insomnia to do besides stare at the ceiling and will his eyelids to surrender to blissful slumber?

Record a cover song, duh, which is what I decided to do last night. I’m not a huge Pearl Jam fan, their heyday was a little before my time, but ‘Just Breathe’ holds a secure spot on my “I love this song so hard” Spotify playlist. I also like that it gives me a chance to work on my finger-picking skills on the Kamoa pineapple soprano.

As you can see by the clock in the video resting on top of my couch (it fell off the wall the other day and I haven’t gotten around to hanging it back up) it was about 10:30/11p.m. when I put this together. Between late night uke-ing and all the coconut curry I cook, I’m 100 percent sure that I’m my neighbors’ favorite neighbor. It could be worse, I could have a crying baby or a dog.

Oh, and to explain the header photo, I fastened my “official busker” pin and returned to the Salt Lake City farmers market this morning after an extended absence. It was a good day, but apparently my callouses had healed, which made for a painful afternoon.

Here’s the video, and as always you can download a free copy of the song on bandcamp.

Read Full Post »

DPP_1

Admittedly, this post is a little late. “Fools Rush In” was the first song I learned on my Kamoa Ukulele, which as you may recall I bought in Hawaii and which has a unique low-G base string, but at the time I thought “I should save that song for Valentine’s Day.”

But V-Day just so happens to land in a the middle of a very busy time for me, squeezed between the end of the Sundance Film Festival and the buildup of the 45-day Utah legislative session. So I recorded the song, didn’t love the way it sounded, tried it again, still didn’t love it, started shooting B-roll for a video and then just kind of dropped the project altogether.

Part of the challenge is that my Kamoa, unlike my Cordoba, does not have an audio jack to record digitally. That means I either record everything live through my microphone or sacrifice the base string, which sounds so great in this song.

But after a week of the top image on Wood’s Stock being me, naked on a massage table, it became apparent that I really needed to put a new post online. So here we are, a brand new albeit loosely completed One Wood Uke video just in time for Valentine’s Day 🙂

As always, the song is available for download at bandcamp, should you feel so inclined.

Also, it has occurred to me that theses videos are all essentially the same. I would experiment more, but it’s a fine line between just posting Uke songs for kicks and going full-Marnie. If I ever cross that line, please, I beg of you, warn me by punching me in the face.

Read Full Post »

400619_10201141038352960_1634794060_n

So this isn’t my best video, a fact that I attribute to two compounding challenges. First, iMovie decided to go ahead and upgrade itself, which is good because the new multi-layer video editing is a vast improvement but also means that I have to re-familiarize myself with the program and all of its new bells and whistles. Second, I had to get it done and posted today before my world gets completely dominated by the Sundance Film Festival, otherwise it would just never happen.

As a note, I apologize for all the closed-eyed ooh-ooh-ooohing. The song demands it and it’s hard to ooh-ooh-ooh with your eyes open. In fact, I just apologize for all the facial expressions I make in this. I really need to stop filming from a profile angle.

I’m a big fan of The Head and The Heart. I’ve seen them perform twice – once at The Depot in SLC and once at Sundance last year – and they’re just killer. If you’re not familiar with them, stop what you’re doing right now and go listen to them. Scratch that, watch my video and like it on Facebook, THEN go listen to The Head and The Heart.

Obviously my own musicality can’t even compare to THATH, but I hope you enjoy this song. I actually started working on a version of Down In The Valley about a year ago but could never quite get it right. Then the other day I was just goofing around with hammer-downs and a lightbulb went off for the strum pattern. That, and my new microphone that allows me to add fingerpicking and harmony tracks, sealed the deal.

I hope you like it. As always it’s available for free on my bandcamp page. And if you haven’t yet, check out the One Wood Uke collection that I created for Wood’s Stock. It’s all there to satisfy your ukulele-related needs. Enjoy.

Read Full Post »

IMG_7545

For the last few months I’ve been mildly obsessed with the trailer for Inside Llewyn Davis. It’s the latest movie by the Coen Brothers (boom) about folk music (BOOM!) and features a soundtrack produced by T. Bone Burnett and Marcus Mumford with performances by Justin Timberlake (what comes after all caps? BOOM?).

Anyway, I’ve been watching it a lot, which subsequently led to the featured track “Fare Thee Well” getting lodged in the wet concrete of my head. It’s also known as “Dink’s Song,” a folky ditty that has seen several renditions over the years.

I started playing around with it about a month ago but there was one problem, it’s a duet and I am (as my stage name suggests) One person.

But luckily, it’s Christmas time and I decided to finally go ahead and by the Blue Yeti microphone I’ve been wanting ever since we shot the video for “The Boxer.” With that in hand, I was able to just descend into the depths of narcissism and sing both parts myself (because who needs friends when you have DIY digital recording equipment?)

The mic runs for a little more than 100 bones, connects directly to your laptop’s USB and gets surprisingly good sound – I had to unplug my refrigerator while I was recording because I could hear the buzz in my headphones and one take had to be scrapped because you could hear the “walk” chimes from the intersection half a block down the street.

So here’s the latest from One Wood Uke. As always the track is available for free on bandcamp (just click the “buy now” button and then enter zero in the price window).

Enjoy the video, and let me know what you think.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »