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The Ukulele Handbook [Paperback]

Gavin Pretor-Pinney , Tom Hodgkinson
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
RRP: 14.99
Price: 10.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

12 Sep 2013

The ukulele has gone from strength to strength in recent years, undergoing a massive resurgence. You can hear the uke all over the place, from trendster indie rock to top ten pop songs, from unshakeable TV ads to YouTube megahits. And this obsession shows no sign of abating - all over the country people are picking up a ukulele and starting to strum, at home, in classes and down at the pub. Schools are even replacing the faithful recorder with a jazzy, inexpensive uke. Famous idlers Gavin Pretor-Pinney and Tom Hodgkinson have spent hours idling away on their ukuleles to produce the ultimate uke handbook: an illustrated guide to its history crossed with a how-to guide and songbook. This is the book that will bring the underground movement into the mainstream.

The first half of the book delves into the rich history of this eccentric little instrument, from its birth in Hawaii to its popularity across the world, with a timeline from 1879 to today and a ukulele hall of fame that includes George Formby, Hawaiian legend Israel Kamakawiwo'ole and YouTube ukulele superstar Jake Shimabukuro.

Then on to the practicalities: the anatomy of the ukulele, which uke to buy, how to play it, how to strum, pick, read chord charts and tune the strings. Once you know all this, you can get playing the songbook, which includes a wide spread of songs from medieval lays and nursery rhymes to blues and rock 'n roll. Beautiful presentation and tab notation make reading the music easy, even for beginners.

With the highest production values, a light touch and an irresistible instrument at centre stage, this book is a must-have for all aspiring Formbys.

Frequently Bought Together

The Ukulele Handbook + Notecracker Ukulele Chords Uke Cards (Notecrackers)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing (12 Sep 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408836297
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408836293
  • Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 16.6 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 97,758 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


You can certainly take it from me that the inspirational Ukulele Handbook is destined to become the official new ukulele Bible. Brilliantly compiled by two uke-playing fanatics, it incorporates how-to-play instructions for beginners, chord charts, handy fingering tips, a medley of easy-to-learn songs, and the absolutely gripping history of the small, adorable, four-string mini-guitar that was born in Hawaii in 1879 ... Lavishly illustrated (Val Hennessy Daily Mail)

Get in on the uke-lear explosion ... With this entertaining history, how-to-play and song book (Saga)

Just the thing for all wannabe ukies (Evening Standard)

***** (Bookseller)

Book Description

The definitive guide to the uke, its legends and history (plus a fantastic songbook)

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Instructural book 14 Oct 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Combines excellent playing guide with history of the instrument.
A present for my son in law who thinks he can play!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Humorous and well-written 13 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Humorous and well-written, nicely illustrated, this book gives you the history of the ukulele and sensible tips for beginners. It includes a course for you to work through. Probably best for relatively inexperienced uke players like me rather than old pros.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Really nice book 31 Jan 2014
By ChrisP
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is a very good tutorial .
It first gives a history of the Uke and its famous players before on page 78 leads you into some very good advice on buying an appropriate Uke. There is then into a 6 week ( or however long you want ) structured course on playing it showing strumming techniques and how to interpret musical notation such as Tab and chord diagrams.
The whole thing is really professional and well laid out
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5.0 out of 5 stars good materials both for reading and practicing 11 Nov 2013
By T Azumi
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am an absolute beginner of ukulele and in the middle of Fifth Week in the 'How to Play' section of this book. I enjoy to use this instrument for both chord strumming and solo - balance between these two are good in this book.

In addition to that, when my fingers are sore from pressing chords, you can read history of the instruments. The authors know how we pull out more materials online if we are guided well, so this book contains minimum information of all what enrich learners experience on this instrument.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Just what I wanted 6 Nov 2013
By Joker
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Still using this very good teacher. Simple and understandable allowing me go at my own speed and revise when necessary
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