21 Songs in 6 Days: Learn Ukulele the Easy Way
So, you have a ukulele, but you can’t really play it. You get frustrated and you want guidance. Maybe you know a few chord shapes. But you want to figure out how to strum easily, and to make the chords turn into music.
In our book, “21 Songs in 6 Days: Learn Ukulele the Easy Way,” we teach you how to be a fluent 3 chord strummer. As you may have heard, all you need is “3 chords and the truth” to join a country band. You’ll be well on your way once you’re done with our book.
We’ll teach you all the following skills
- How to change chords quickly and easily
- How to keep your place in the song
- How to add “up” strums with both the even and uneven beat so you can develop more strumming variation
- How to play ukulele fluently
How to change chords quickly and easily
In “21 Songs in 6 Days,” we teach you how to change chords quickly and easily. We start with simple folk songs where there are NO chord changes. The entire song uses only one chord! That way you can concentrate on strumming with a steady beat. You can also learn how to strum both “down” and “up” with both even and uneven strums. Since some music has an even division of the beat and some music has an uneven division of the beat, it’s important to learn and “feel” this distinction. Don’t worry, every song comes with an accompanying video lesson to teach you the concept.
How to keep your place in the song
Once you know how to strum and follow the lyrics in a song, then we introduce chord changes. We use the simplest chord changes with two-chord songs to help you get the hang of knowing when to change chords. We use standard music notation to help you see when to change chords. We have a suggested strumming pattern to get you going on each song. Even if you don’t read music, seeing the notation and watching the videos helps you to get the feel of the song.
Once you can do the F to C7 chord change, we teach you the C to G7 chord change. You play many of the same songs over again. That way you can work on the harder chord and the skill of changing chords, rather than having to learn all new songs.
Then we have a section of 10 Bonus 2-Chord songs with both the F to C7 and the C to G7 chord changes. This way, you get good at two-chord songs with these four different chords.
I would highly recommend this book! I’ve never played a guitar or ukelele before, but found each each lesson easy to follow. I’m looking forward to purchasing the second book in the series!
I recently purchased a concert size Uke and I have been teaching myself to play. I purchased several books, and this is the best one I’ve encountered so far. I appreciate the way it breaks down all the steps methodically and clearly explains everything.
Finally, we get to 3-Chord Songs
Jingle Bells, I’ve Been Working on the Railroad, Oh When the Saints and Red River Valley are great 3-chord songs. Because you’ve had so much practice with two-chord songs, you fly through these three-chord songs!
How to add “up” strums
Way back at the beginning we’ve encouraged you to use “up” strums in addition to all “down” strums on the beat. We offer a suggested strumming pattern with each song, so you know what to do. As before, the video lessons are helpful.
When learning a new song, we suggest you start with all “down” strums until you are comfortable. Then, you can add the more complicated strumming patterns with “up” strums too.
How to play ukulele fluently
Because we keep the chords simple, you develop left-hand fluency. That way, you can concentrate on what your right hand is doing. You add more complicated strumming patterns as you work your way through the book.
If a suggested pattern is confusing, go back to all down strums on the beat of the song. We guide you step-by-step so you can work through the material. You build a completely wonderful skill of 3-chord ukulele fluency!
There is also a chord glossary with a picture of how to make each chord. Finally, there is a glossary of musical terms for you to refer to if you forget what one of the words means.
Songs in “21 Songs in 6 Days”
Are You Sleeping?
Row, Row, Row Your Boat
Three Blind Mice
Have You Seen the Ghost of John?
Hey, Ho, Nobody Home
Ah, Poor Bird
Chatter With the Angels
A Ram Sam Sam
Shoo, Fly, Don’t Bother Me (in keys of F & C)
Hush, Little Baby (in keys of F & C)
Oats, Peas, Beans and Barley Grow (in keys of F & C)
C, then G7 Etude
He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands
Polly Wolly Doodle
For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow
Oh, When the Saints
I’ve Been Working on the Railroad
Red River Valley