Everyone loves the sound of a guitar, it’s true, but those who discount the ukulele based on its size just don’t understand how amazing a little sound can be. It’s got a lovely, soft little voice that fills you with joy, and there’s hardly a person who can keep their hands off them, even if they haven’t a clue how to play. Thankfully, no one asks that you know how to play ukulele on Play Your Ukulele Day, we just ask that you pick up that Ukulele and play!
History of World Play Your Ukulele Day
The ukulele is arguably the most iconic sound from Hawaii, which is where it got its start. Everything about this tiny guitar is adorable, right down to what its name means, “Jumping Flea”. Sure, fleas aren’t all that cute, unless you imagine an adorable cartoon flea along the lines of the firefly in “The Princess and the Frog”, then suddenly it’s the cutest thing you’ve ever seen. That’s the ukulele, a cartoon flea with a bright voice and a cheery disposition.
The Ukulele came into existence sometime in the 1880’s, though the name of its predecessor is less adorable than ‘jumping flea’. The origin instrument was of Portuguese origin, and was known as the machete. Sounds violent, doesn’t it? Thankfully, neither the sound of the Ukulele nor its name is violent, while strumming it is sure to brighten your day.
The instrument actually played a central role in helping to revitalize Canada’s music programs, as it was an inexpensive way to introduce students to music, and was incredibly practical to teach and foster musical literacy. The Doane program, named for its creator J. Chalmers Doane, and during its time it taught nearly 50,000 children to love and play the ukulele. While the Doane program has ended, it has a legacy that is headed by James Hill in coordination with the original Doane.
How to celebrate World Play Your Ukulele Day
It’s right there in the name my friend! Go out, get a ukulele to call your very own, and start playing! With its bright tone and cheerful disposition you’re sure to bring joy to everyone around you, even if they’re just laughing along with you as you try to pick out a tune. The great thing is even the worst musician sounds amazing on a Ukulele… Well… As long as you don’t listen too close.