Here’s a song I wrote two days ago, or was it yesterday? haha. It’s called ‘What About Coco Pesto?’ and it’s pretty self explanatory 🙂 check out my Soundcloud if you have the time. If you like flowers and ukuleles you can also have a look at my Instagram 😉
Gotta stay positive, everyone goes through breakups right? I will be okay, right? Can someone confirm?? haha Good nightI leave you with this adorable Corgi ❤
Currently, I am learning how to play the Ukulele and I am loving it. As I don’t have any proper music education and I am just learning off youtube tutorials and Tab charts the tips I am giving are to be taken with a grain of salt. 🙂
However, in the past six months, by changing the way I practice and trying new things I have learned and improved a lot. In addition, this past week I feel like I have passed a threshold. Playing seems easier, more fun and, I felt like sharing what helped me reach that point.
Learn the Scales (or Just Some)
I put this one as my first tip because I wish someone had told me about scales before. Without basic knowledge of music, it can be a little bit hard to wrap your head around it. However, even understanding just the bare minimum will help you understanding how notes and keys work.
In addition, if you know a few scales it will help you with learning how to solo on top of songs. For example, even though I don’t even know all the scales by heart just being more familiar with them helped me tab out a small part of the song “City of Stars” from La La Land. This made me so proud haha. Ukutabs, is a great website to learn how to play the ukulele and it provides a very large database for ukulele scales. So if you are interested in finding out more about these I suggest you go have a look at this page –> https://ukuscales.com/
Allowing Yourself to Solo
You might not yet master scales perfectly, but you are getting a feel for them (as am I) and what better way to reach greatness than to practice? Thus, even though you might not feel ready yet, allow yourself to try and solo, find a little personal riff. It is so much fun to integrate riffs in chord progressions, and in my opinion, it accelerates progress!
Don’t Keep it All to Yourself, Play with Someone Else!
So that’s a hard one, at least for me. I always yearned to play with other people whether it was guitar or ukulele but since I never used to play outside of my room, I was both shy and unable to spontaneously adapt myself to others. However, since I have slowly started to get accustomed to some scales it has become easier to play with others. Playing with someone teaches you so much more as you can share knowledge and experiment with new things that you wouldn’t have tried alone.
It is so much fun to play with another person especially when you get to the point where you feel like you are both on the same level. Music just flows.
Try to practice songs with chords you don’t know, try and experiment with different chord shapes even if it hurts or you have to be slow for awhile. I find that it is great practice for your fingers and it will increase your repertoire. In addition, if you are the type to write songs, it will give you more possibilities!
Play in The Sunshine by The Water (Outdoor in General)
Do I need to explain?
Stop judging yourself because you think you are not as good as other people out there. You are learning! It’s ok. Don’t let that idea stop you from playing. How did these people you admire get better at the instrument they master? By playing it over and over again!
Sometimes you are going to hit a plateau and it’s okay, chill. Like I said in point 6. no need for pressure. Make-up chord progressions maybe add silly words to it, sing about your love for milk and your disgust for anything fishy haha (I hate fish). Have a laugh.
I have wanted to write a song for a while now, I knew which chords I wanted to use but somehow rhythm and lyrics didn’t come to me easily. For weeks I felt frustrated as if there was something stuck in me that I needed to push out somehow.
Of course, it’s like anything when you try and force something to happen, it doesn’t. Another thing is, these last weeks I have been feeling really happy and fulfilled. I am traveling around, I have been in Budapest and Zagreb and right now I am back in France.
Although all of this is awesome, I have noticed that my creativity (
Gee that sounds pretentious) really depends on my mood and is at its peak when I feel upset. I have mentioned this in an older post Music is The (my) Answer to Everything. So it is somehow frustrating because I still want to be creative when I am happy but I just don’t know how.
Can someone help??
As I was leaving Zagreb to go home for Christmas, I left someone I deeply love behind. Even though I know we will be reunited soon, it felt difficult to leave him due to things that have happened between us in the past.
Driving past frostbitten landscape I couldn’t help but feel a little bit lonely. However, as my thoughts wandered I realized that paradoxically the reason why I felt so lonely in that moment, is because I actually have someone that I love and who loves me back… it inspired me because it calmed some of the doubts that I had about this relationship.
Finally, I came up with lyrics, a few days later I came up with a melody. I like it, it’s not genius, but it’s how I feel and I wanted to share it. Enjoy the CHEESINESS haha.
Where he sits, is where you sleep
His head on your shoulder
While on his lap, you stretch your legs
He brings you comfort, your bring him warmth
And any place becomes a home
That’s when you know If an hour away seems to long That’s when you know As just a thought can make you smile That’s when you feel from deep within You can look at tomorrow with him….
A poet once said
Distance is to love
What wind is to fire
A breeze threatened their flames
But seamlessly stronger, the fire grew
It cannot be extinguished nor tamed
As they united more than flesh
No doubts remained
When you not scared of the work ahead When you’re ready, when you want it That’s when you know it is right …. He is right
I am a huge ukulele fan. It feels like I have always been a huge ukulele fan but to be honest, the passion that I now have for this instrument started only a year ago when my boyfriend bought me a little blue ukulele for Christmas.
I played a little bit of guitar before, I am not very good at it and I never took classes but since the first time I picked up a guitar, it has always been a great pleasure of mine. I tried to thrive and improve myself but my performance seemed to plateau. I had to admit that it was probably time for me to get classes (which I still need to do).
I felt frustrated by guitar and played less until my blue ukulele came into my life and brought back the excitement of stringed instruments! Ukuleles are so fun to play with and their cheerful sound never fails to brighten up my day. I am in love. This was the best present anyone has ever gotten me. BEST PRESENT EVER!
This little walk down memory lane wasn’t for nothing, I swear. I wanted to explain why I started to get into ukulele before getting to my point… After almost a year of owning a ukulele, I feel like I have reached a new plateau and the frustration I was getting with guitar is back.
Two days ago while I was looking up a ukulele tutorial from The Ukulele Teacher’s YouTube channel (check him out, he’s great!), I spotted a video on the suggestion bar called “Most incredible GIRLS playing UKULELE in the world!“. The caps, the words “ukulele” and “incredible” captured my attention. I had to check out these girls! Honoka (18) and Azita (15), two young and extremely talented Hawaiian girls shredding the ukulele and just sharing their beautifully contagious smiles.
As I watched the video I was just overwhelmed with feelings of admiration but also happiness (I am sure you just felt the same! Right? 😀) When these two girls play ukulele you can feel their love and passion for the instrument and music itself. In addition, their technique is simply mind-blowing!
I got sucked into watching several videos on their YouTube channel “Honoka and Azita” and just felt my frustration with ukulele turn into motivation! I will probably need a teacher at some point but for now I mainly need to hold on and keep exercising. If I really love ukulele as much as I say, I will make sure that I get better. Thanks to the inspiring Honoka and Azita I feel like I have a new found motivation that will help me achieve new goals and maybe one day I will be able to play with them and keep up (I am allowed to dream…no? haha).
More or less unrelated
My step-father has led on several times that he might get me a better ukulele for Christmas… I hope it’s true, I love my little blue ukulele but let’s be honest it is more of a toy than a proper instrument!
16 days until Christmas!
I will leave you with this lovely cover because, yes, these girls sing too!
Some of you might disagree with this just like a lot of my friends. They are always trying to convince me not to watch a romantic comedy when I have a heartache, not to listen to sad songs when I feel down. However, to me that is THE solution when I feel low: giving in to the
sadness completely, connect with the feelings that I am told to repress. A sad song with a moving melody and lyrics that hit where it hurts is how you get all this out of your system! I have a good cry, I sing along and suddenly it is like I put down some of what was weighing on me. It never fails (at least for me) to chase the clouds stopping me from seeing the positive side of things. At least for a little bit. Long enough to consider making plans on how to feel better on a long term basis.
Nonetheless, after reading an article about how sad songs can make people who suffer from depression feel worse it got me thinking that maybe my friends are right, it isn’t always good to stay in a cocoon of melancholy depending on who you are and what your issue is. It is really interesting to me because even though I am not saying you should just drown into sad melodies, I really thought that somehow it was the same for everyone. First, you feel sad. Then, you put yourself in a sad comfort of songs and movies that convey how you feel. It makes you feel less alone and understood. Finally, later on, you start getting into phase two: dancing and singing to happy music! That is my simple and maybe unoriginal solution.
Dancing and singing for motivation!
I was going to write this whole post only from my perspective of things and then I found so many articles just saying the same thing I was thinking in a clearer manner and validated by studies and/or testimonies! Singing on top of your lungs and dancing to your favorite songs is just the best thing anyone can do in case of stress.
I agree that when you feel down it is hard to get into it straight away (again, at least for me). However, after the first part is done (see above) you can try putting some groovy music on and it just draws you in without you even noticing! It releases the stress, the anguish and fills your body up with dopamine which is a neurotransmitter that controls the reward and pleasure center of the brain. It helps you regulate emotions so YOU WANT IT! (Forget about the part where dopamine contributes to your sugar addiction haha).
Making music: composing, writing, playing an instrument!
THIS! This is where I really wanted to get at! It is not about being a good musician, but about channeling all the negative energy and turn it into something positive, something nice. It is a challenge that is rewarding no matter what. You get the emotions out on paper, or while making loud noises with that new instrument you just picked up and/or you create a hit and become the new Adele!
The result doesn’t matter as much as the action itself. To me, it seems like it is a way to realize that sadness isn’t just there to make you feel like shit but has an energy that can be used to do things, to create, an energy to push you. Sadness has a creative energy. Actually, this is a thing that frustrates me sometimes because I feel like I can only be totally creative and active when I am feeling down, maybe it is just me but it appears that a lot of great songs that go through the years unforgotten and are considered as great achievement started out from an artist’s low point.
Use your downs to create new ups, for me it is writing songs (I may not be good at it, but it makes me happy so I will not put that ukulele down haha), for you maybe it is painting, creating a business whatever really, just channel all these feelings and instead of letting them dragging you down use them to lift yourself up.
Music is beneficial in general!
I focused so much on sadness that I forgot to get it back to the point: Music is my answer to everything! I can’t focus? I listen to music! I have a boring course to learn by heart? I turn it into a song! I need motivation? I make myself an uplifting playlist! I feel like I am in a bad mood? I listen to that same playlist and so on.
Playing music is the activity that stimulates the most brain regions, so it can only be beneficial to make some and to listen to it. Amongst other things it improves memory and coordination.
Again, someone talked about it a lot better than I could so I refer you to that last article on how music can help improve your productivity: https://www.helpscout.net/blog/music-productivity/