Learning how to play ʻukulele is easy! In a ten minute ʻukulele lesson I can get most students playing a song.
Past that point though and you inevitably start to study the instrument. That takes time.
Taking ʻukulele lessons from a good teacher is an amazing opportunity that I highly recommend. Best is in-person, but there are also lots of people teaching on Skype these days.
Since both options are not always feasible, I’ve written a huge collection of ʻukulele lessons over the years that will teach you how to play on your own time.
Improve your picking and strumming technique
My latest book, Right Hand Technique for ‘Ukulele, is an in-depth guide to optimizing your playing motions. By using correct technique you can play faster, cleaner, more confidently, and easier.
With almost 60 pages of instruction and 70 how-to photos, you’ll be hard pressed to find a more comprehensive look at technique anywhere else.
‘Ukulele Lessons by Playing Level:
For more level-specific lessons, use the links at the top of the page.
Basic ‘Ukulele Lessons:
Incredibly important, but often overlooked. My pet peeve with most ʻukulele player is their timing. Check out these lessons and avoid being one of “those guys.”
Rhythm ‘Ukulele Lessons:
All about chords and right hand techniques using all the strings.
To start you need some chords: ʻukulele chords and chord theory.
All about playing single notes on one string (or two).
You can play beautiful notes all day, but at some point you will want to add some more texture to your songs. Articulation techniques are where it’s at.
From giving you additional sounds you couldn’t achieve otherwise to making things easier to play, techniques are an important part of any ʻukulele player’s arsenal.
This is the nitty-gritty section about how music actually works. You don’t need to know how to make a 7b5 chord to be a great player, however, knowing theory deepens your understanding as a musician.
Click through the link to see all the lessons:
The Mental Game:
Being able to play cool songs is only half of the journey an ʻukulele player takes. The other half is learning how to find joy, satisfaction, and sustenance in your desire for music. It can be harder than you might think…
These are my anti-ʻukulele lessons!
All my ʻukulele video lessons can be found on my Youtube channel. Be sure to subscribe!
Here’s my latest video:
If you don’t have access to a local teacher, there are still many resources you can study from.
The best, in my opinion, is The Ukulele Way by James Hill. I’ve worked as a site admin for James for years and have really seen this program inside and out. It’s made up of six “books,” each containing about 10 lessons that focus on the skills required for playing solo arrangements. Each lesson includes a video, sheet music or tab, and audio examples. The pedagogy is well thought out and each lesson builds upon the previous, starting quite simple and become quite advanced by the end. It’s only $9 CAD per month and is really the best value around.
Another great resource is Ukulele Underground University. Taught by Aldrine Guerrero, these lessons cover many areas of study like theory, song tutorials, genre styles, and also include guest teachers for more diversity. There are also weekly updates and live streams.
Finally, I’ve been very impressed by the book and corresponding video lessons Daniel Ward has put together called Arpeggio Meditations. You can check out my review of the program here. There are 16 studies presented with the focus on picking hand agility and, obviously, arpeggio playing. In addition to beautiful transcriptions in the book, there are accompanying videos that can be rented on Vimeo (for a whole year).