If you are learning the ukulele and have reached the point where it seems like you are not making any meaningful progress, then this article is a must-read for you.
The thing is that there is a stumbling block preventing you from making progress. It could be a bad habit or incorrect routine. Whatever the case may be, this guide will help to set you on the right path to learning and become a better ukulele player. So read on.
1. Get good quality ukulele that holds tune well
Learning how to play the ukulele is a great experience and you feel very happy as you start practicing and playing new songs.
Most players will tell you they want the best ukulele for beginners because investing in the wrong ukulele can frustrate one’s musical journey.
A ukulele that doesn’t hold tune well will require you to tune almost regularly as you play. You hardly can get the right note while playing and you can’t get the notes of the songs you are listening to right too.
However, buying the best ukulele does not mean you are done with tuning the instrument. You may only require light tuning before you start playing. And even after robust strumming and extended practice, the instrument should be able to maintain its tune.
2. Tune Each String Properly Before You Start Playing
Another reason your ukulele may not be sounding right is poor tuning. We sometimes forget to tune before playing especially when the excitement is so high.
Playing ukulele that is sounding poorly can hinder your passion for playing. The feeling is even worst when you are practicing a new song because no matter what you play, you will never get the notes right.
Before you start playing fully, check to make sure the instrument is properly tuned. You can tune manually or use an electric ukulele tuner.
Most people who don’t have much experience on tuning the ukulele manually prefer the use of the electronic tuner because it is much easier, faster and accurate.
The manual tuning will require more time to practice and master. You have to train those ears to be able to identify how each note sounds.
3. Hold Your Ukulele Correctly And Observe The Right Posture
If you want to learn the ukulele faster and avoid getting stuck, learn how to hold the instrument while playing.
Unfortunately, most beginners don’t know how to properly hold the ukulele. Others don’t attach any importance to it. The ukulele is meant to be enjoyed while playing.
Feeling any form of strain or weakness after playing for a while is not right. Not holding the ukulele properly while playing can result in discomfort and pain that may hinder you from progressing or enjoying yourself.
The right posture we are talking of is not to sit upright. You can sit down while playing but ensure you don’t arch your back. You have to keep your back straight all the time.
The next thing to do is to support the ukulele below your chest. Your forearm should hold the body of the instrument in position. The hand you normally use to hold down chords while playing gives the final support.
4. Learn These 5 popular chords
The 5 popular chords we are talking about are; C, G, F, D, A. These chords are commonly used in most songs you will be learning as a beginner.
There are hundreds of chords you need to still learn as you progress, but these are the most common chords you will encounter more in most of the songs.
To learn these chords, I would suggest you make use of a metronome. Use it at a low pace but progress steadily increasing the speed. You also need to take some breaks as you practice. Do not practice for an extended period without observing any break.
5. Hum Songs While Playing Slowly
Playing and singing at the same thing is challenging for most players, especially beginners who are just starting out on playing the ukulele. But there is great fun when you master how to sing and play at the same thing.
In this section, you can hum while playing and at the same time make use of a metronome to pace yourself. You can start with the down-down strumming pattern. Continue by playing a section of the same song repeatedly while humming.