Ukulele "Stuff": Education, Technology, Play Alongs, Reviews, Accessories, and More!

Video Epiphanies

Within the last 24 hours, I have had a couple of epiphanies as it pertains to the play along videos that I have been creating.

This all came about as a result of my creation of a play along for “Lord, I Need You,” a song I have wanted to create for a long time.  This video won’t be used by schools—so I chose not to publish it to my “feed” on YouTube.  I’m not ashamed of my faith by any means—but I understand that my feed is likely filled with music teachers who need to use content in secular schools.  If they want to see what religious play alongs I create (and I will create more), they can simply look at my uploads or follow my religious play along play list.

Matt Maher’s “Lord, I Need You” sits within my vocal range as performed—in the Key of Bb.  Bb isn’t a wonderful key for the ukulele, so I decided to take the song to another key. C is a full step higher—and the song is already too high at times for a “mezzo” singer (mezzo soprano and baritones that make up a good 50-60% of the population).  So the option was to drop it…to G (A required an E chord—so I had to avoid that, too).

After I had created the play along, I decided to import a non-transposed version telling the player to use a capo at the 3rd fret—thus matching the actual key of the recording.  I had never done this before, but will likely do so again (it is a VERY easy thing to make happen).

And then I realized…what if people want to sing WITHOUT the performance?  Our play along format has been used to encourage reluctant singers, and it works.  Even so, there is a point where perhaps you want to play along with the accompaniment, yet not sing with the singer.  So…I found a karaoke version (lead vocals reduced) and embedded that into BOTH of the versions (Capo and non-Capo).  I’ve decided that I am going to do this will all songs from now on (I have to see if there is an on-iPad solution that will do this if YouTube can’t produce a matching Karaoke track).  I’m going to call these files “Ukulele Karaoke”

I have already done this with Coldplay’s The Scientist this evening.

I might go back over time and add Karaoke versions for existing songs—-but new songs will be the prioirty.

And, as always, if you have suggestions for songs to be added to the collection, please let me know.

Also check out the versions being created by Ukulaliens—right now they are adding some of the existing “older” repertoire in their version (See my last post.  I think Ukulaliens are creating play alongs with a process similar to mine—and they are certainly using Chordette for Education), which makes the songs easier to read (and guarantees the “Next Chord” is visible).

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