Grab your ukulele and join the Uke Club 3.0 Wednesdays at 7 p.m. at Decades Coffee Club.

Grab your ukulele and join the Uke Club 3.0 Wednesdays at 7 p.m. at Decades Coffee Club.

Uke club continues ukulele craze

Chilliwack Academy of Music has kicked off Uke Club 3.0 on the heels of a successful program started last summer.

Grab your ukulele and join the club.

Chilliwack Academy of Music has kicked off Uke Club 3.0 on the heels of a successful program started last summer.

“We originally decided to run it as a drop-in class,” says Academy Principal Graham Yates.

They had no idea if it would fly or not.

“It was a risk.”

But the class was a hit with groups of friends and couples captivated by the recent uke craze.

“One night we packed 26 people into a small classroom,” he said. “That’s when I knew we’d hit on something good, something worth nurturing.”

Now the Uke Club 3.0 is set to go every Wednesday night at Decades.

Yates figures the ukulele is popular not only because is it easy and versatile to play, but it’s he says it’s also “hard to keep from laughing when you hear that gentle, folksy sound.”

Interest in the uke globally has hit a fever pitch.

Eddie Vedder released an all-ukulele album last year.

Then there’s the super-popular uke version of Over the Rainbow showcased last season on the hit show Glee.

CBC Radio did a segment on Ruby’s Ukes, a music studio in Vancouver about the therapeutic qualities of learning the ukulele.

If you missed the first and second drop-in sessions, don’t worry, says Yates, it’s easy to catch up.

The club is for anyone interested in ukulele. There’s a whole lot of cross-generational learning going on.

“I was in the class last year and we all needed more,” said Yates.

The first session of 2012 they worked on Over the Rainbow, refining the strumming and chord changes.

“That tune would be a great one to work up and make it our signature song.”

They also tackled Sweet Georgia Brown, recognized by many because it was the theme song of the Harlem Globetrotters.

“It was so much fun,” says the classically trained pianist who has become “fanatical” about the uke.

The class meets Wednesdays at 7 p.m. in the meeting room at Decades Coffee Club.

“Participants can buy punch cards so that they can drop in whenever it is convenient for them, rather than have to pay a tuition fee and risk losing out if they can’t make every class.”

“We’ve also kept the cost low –  $30 for 6 classes – to encourage commitment, cover the rent, but keep it affordable.”

The idea is that people who are at least a little bit competent on the instrument (either through their own experience or by taking Uke Club Levels 1 and 2) will set the pace.

Ultimately, Yates says, he’d like to form a thriving ukulele band in Chilliwack that can give performances and continue to attract adults who struggled with music lessons in the past or never had time to learn.

“Making music is such a gift. You might think you’re giving it to yourself, but then realize you are actually giving to others.”

Yates said he’s taken ukulele hero Jake Shimabukuro’s quote to heart: “If everyone played the ukulele, the world would be a better place.”

More information about ukulele programs, Uke Club Levels and Uke Club 3.0 are available at the Chilliwack Academy of Music registration desk in the Cultural Centre, by calling 604.792.0790, or by visiting www.chilliwackmusic.com.

Just Posted

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
Student’s quote in Chilliwack high school yearbook equates graduation with end of slavery

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Alexis Paige Simpson has not been in contact with her family in two months. (RCMP photo)
Chilliwack RCMP looking for missing 20-year-old woman

Police say Alexis Paige Simpson has not been in contact with her family in two months

(Maps.Chilliwack.com)
RCMP seek dash-cam footage after Chilliwack road rage incident

Male driving a black pickup stopped and allegedly threatened to punch another driver

Doses prepared at pop-up vaccine clinic in Toronto’s Jane and Finch neighbourhood, in the M3N postal code, on Saturday, April 17, 2021. ( THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston)
4 vaccine clinics coming to Neighbourhood Learning Centre

Fraser Health made clinics ‘low-barrier’ meaning pre-registration not required

Deepak Sharma of Abbotsford has been convicted of the sexual assault of one of his cab passengers in West Vancouver in January 2019.
Former Abbotsford Hindu temple president convicted of sexual assault

Deepak Sharma assaulted a female passenger when he was a cab driver

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

One Reconciliation Pole and two Welcome Figures were unveiled during a ceremony in honour of truth and reconciliation on National Peoples Indigenous Day at the Vancouver School District in Vancouver, B.C., on Friday, June 21, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Horgan marks Indigenous Peoples Day by urging recognition of systemic racism

National Indigenous Peoples Day has been marked in Canada since 1996

Most Read