Useful Ukulele Resources

After (or as soon as) you get your ukulele, it will be useful to have a few good resources to help you learn what you need to know to play and advance your playing.

To Jump In and Get Playing without having to read much:

If you just want to play the ukulele and don't want to read a comprehensive book, I recommend Hal Leonard Ukulele Method Book 1 and Book 2 .  Book 1 is so ridiculously easy that immediately or quite soon you will be able to run through the few song selections and skills here and will be hungry for more songs and info, so I strongly recommend getting both of these short books.


The Best How-To Guide:

  <----book photos are clickable links

The very first resource I recommend is Ukulele For Dummies .  Again I say here, do not be put off by being called a Dummy; this book is an excellent resource and tells you everything you need to know, in an in depth and understandable way.  From chord charts and all the explanation you need to start reading and using tab and notation, to strumming and syncopation, scales and single note picking techniques, to anatomy and history of the instrument, to styles and players to know and songs and exercises to play, it is all covered here in this entertaining volume. The knowledge you will gain from this book is an excellent value.

For Sharpening Skills:

A helpful and exhaustive companion to the Ukulele for Dummies book is Ukulele Exercises For Dummies .

This book is incredibly comprehensive and gives many exercises and tons of great info for expanding your skill set on this delightful little instrument that is such great fun to play.

Despite the Dummy names, I think Ukulele For Dummies and Ukulele Exercises For Dummies together constitute a complete course, taking you from complete dummy or beginner to accomplished ukeist as quickly as you'd like to get there.

Recommended on the Web:

  • Ukulele Tricks - from Brett McQueen, Author of Ukulele Tricks for Dummies.  A great site.
  • Got A Ukulele- Barry Maz.  His video reviews are especially helpful, and he has many.  I'll like to read his books, but I haven't yet.
  • Ukulele Hunt- Alistair Wood, author of Ukulele for Dummies. Lots of info here.
  • Uke School- easy beginner info that's super helpful for a quick start.
  • Mike Warren's Ukulele Barn- Mike has info, a forum, and videos
  • UkeBuddy- I hadn't seen this resource before now, but it's a handy dandy chord finder tool, with lots more info there too.  
  • Jim's Ukulele Songbook- a fabulous and generous reference, thanks, Jim!
Let me know if there are more resources you'd like to see included here.

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Ali @ Not All Dreams Are Free said...

Hi Millie, I've seriously always wanted to learn the ukulele, but was a bit daunted by the idea of self-teaching (as I don't consider myself very musically gifted). Is the ukulele easier to teach yourself than the guitar?

Millie Green said...

Hi, Ali- YES, in my experience, ukulele is about 10x easier than guitar. And it is FUN (rather than frustrating) to learn. I think you should start playing today! I've said it here before, but I don't know of anything that is more fun than a ukulele.