Friday, 12 April 2013

Fixed my embedding issue - and to celebrate, here's ukulelezaza - Was it a Dream?

Yes, I'm a happy bunny again, my blog looks so much better with the videos embedded! And this new video by Remco Houtman-Hanssen (aka ukulelezaza) makes for such a dreamy start to the day that I'm thrilled to share it with you right here. I blogged Remco's tuition video for "Mr Sandman" some time ago, that number has really taken off among the players who like to play chord melodies. Here is "Was it a Dream?"

Remco is playing his 60's Martin Style 1 soprano. And the style is typical of Remco's soprano uke instrumentals, so lyrical... there are more on his album "Painting the Clouds with Sunshine" - I have it in my car and it's my favourite play for driving just now... so calming.

I was privileged to meet and make friends with Remco at the last convention of the George Formby Society in Blackpool last month. I had just bought his lovely vintage Gibson UB2 banjo-uke from him so it was natural that we say "Hi" as we were both there. Yes, Remco is one of those people who, like me, love the wooden uke and the banjo-uke, and have a love of Formby-style playing. But Remco doesn't like to sing, his realm is the instrumental, and whilst he is perfectly at home in the famous "thrash", standing out with everyone else in front of the stage playing the Formby tunes and banjo-uke solos, Formby songs as such are not in his performance repertoire. Instead, he incorporates the Formby-style strums effortlessly into his banjo-uke instrumentals.

It was Remco's first visit to a Formby convention for many years... he lives in Belgium. But as he told us, he'd "got the Formby itch" again. Now, over the course of the weekend, we might expect a max of three numbers from any one player, at most..... two one day, one the next or vice versa. But Remco went down such a storm, we had... wait for it... I'm sure it was eleven! The comperes could see, we couldn't get enough .... what a player!

Before everyone left on the Sunday night, Remco kindly wrote down the titles of all the pieces he had played for us. The only paper we had between us was a few raffle tickets, and he wrote all the titles down on the backs.... and they were all here in front of me the other day....! But for the moment, I've mislaid them - typical, sorry... I will search for that information, but for the moment I can tell you that my favourite piece was another lyrical soprano uke instrumental, "Under Paris Skies"... I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!

More details in my next post about these.... CD "Painting the Clouds With Sunshine" and Remco's excellent book of tabs + DVD "Happy Days Are Here Again" (16 Popular Songs from the Golden Jazz Era, arranged by ukulelezaza)- contact Remco through youtube for purchase details..... and the lists of songs are coming up!

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HI! I hope you enjoy this blog and I'd love to hear your comments! But I know you'll forgive me if I read them over before I click the "publish" button! Thanks!