Podcast #1 - How do I know when I know it?

podcast Sep 01, 2020

In this episode: 1. How to know when it's time to move on to the next lesson. 2. Can a C chord be a C chord even when it doesn't look like a C chord? 3. How to navigate easily between all six levels of The Ukulele Way online.

JP asks:
Is it recommended to be able to play through at 100% speed repeatedly without mistakes before moving to the next lesson? Excited to learn more but don't want to be sloppy either. 

James answers:
Hi JP, great question. The short answer: get it 80% perfect then move on, circling back to review in two lessons' time. Why? 1. Because getting stuck is no fun. 2. Because things that seem difficult now may seem easier after you have a couple more lessons under your belt. Uke on!


Richard L. asks:
Working on the first few measures of Acadian Lullaby (Lesson 6) and I’m confused by the chord diagrams that are labeled as C but aren’t conventional. I can sort of reverse-engineer them and see that they are made up of notes that would make a C chord, but I don’t see how I would know how to come up with them. Should I understand how to make these chords at this point? Maybe this is more advanced and you will explain it in future lessons. If so I can wait, I don’t mean to skip ahead.

James answers:
Great question, Richard. At first, this seems overwhelming, I know. Which is why, at this stage, I usually recommend not thinking too much :) But since you asked, it's the difference between a chord and a voicing. A chord is "what" you're playing (i.e. C or F or G or...) and the voicing is "how" your playing it (the exact arrangement of the chord notes on the fretboard). A chord has many, many voicings but there are some very common ones that happen time and time again. It seems overwhelming but then you realize that the 3 most common voicings of C are 0-0-0-3, 0-0-3-x and 0-0-x-x. You just get used to the fact that C can appear in those three forms depending on the melody note (i.e. you need to be able to highlight any note in the chord. If a chord has three notes, you need at least three voicings for that chord).


Carole C. asks:
Is here an easy way to move between books? As I continue with the lessons I want to be able to pop back to a previous book to review.

James answers:
There's a "quick links" list on the homepage of each book (e.g. Book 1 homepage: https://www.uketropolis.com/products/the-ukulele-way-book-1). If you keep that open in a browser tab you'll be able to move pretty easily between books. Also bookmark the table of contents; that might even be a better way to do it: https://www.uketropolis.com/the-ukulele-way-toc
If you're looking for online ukulele lessons then you've come to the right place, Uketropolis is an online course provider for ukulele players, with beginner ukulele lessonsintermediate lessonsjazz lessons, and more!

Stay in the Uke Loop!

Subscribe to the Uketropolis Gazette. Free arrangements, tips, interviews and more delivered to your inbox.


Stay in the Uke Loop!

Get monthly teaching tips, learning strategies and interesting interviews delivered right to your inbox.