I teach group workshops. Any of these strike your fancy? Contact me and we’ll get it rolling.
Tasty Strum Patterns for Uke
Do you find, in practicing or playing at uke jams, that you normally turn to the same strumming pattern even for songs that are wildly different? Diversify your strumming portfolio and make your uke life tastier. Learn how simple is it to make your renditions of songs come more alive. Add a bit of rhythmic variety, get your right and left hands on the same page, and watch your musical life improve. 1 or 1.5 hour long workshop.
Music Theory, Demystified for Uke Players
Does the term “Music Theory” strike—if not fear—at least a bit of confusion in your heart? Learn the basics here, presented in a simple, comprehensive way that can help improve your uke playing and songwriting. Learn what it means for a song to be in a “key”. Learn why some chord progressions are popular, and sound amazing. Learn why some chord progressions are rule-breakers, and sound amazing. Learn an easy method Sage uses all the time to change the key of a song to more easily fit your singing voice. Bring your uke! 1 or 1.5 hour long workshop.
Songwriting for Grownups—12 Bar Blues
How can lyric writing and music theory elements be unified to create a well-written song? We’ll take the traditional blues structure—the backbone of American music—as a starting point and build from there, exploring the interplay between lyrics, melody, and chords. Come with curiosity and a willingness to play as we explore this song structure together. We’ll leave the workshop with a brand-new, completed song, lots of inspiration, and new tools to go home and write even more. 1.5 hour long workshop.
Songwriting for Grownups
How can lyric writing and music theory elements be unified to create a well-written song? We’ll take the classic A/B (verse, chorus) form as a starting point and build from there, exploring the interplay between lyrics, melody, and chords. Come with curiosity and a willingness to play as we explore this song structure together. We’ll leave the workshop with a brand-new, completed song, lots of inspiration, and new tools to go home and write even more. 1.5 hour long workshop.
Songwriting for Kids (Of All Ages)
Have you ever written a song? It might seem like a daunting task, but: Have you ever had a conversation? Have you ever sat around and daydreamed for a while? An idea and some space for curious exploration—that’s all you need to write a song. As a group we’ll come up with a theme, generate some ideas, nurture the song’s structure as it emerges, develop a melody, and at the end of this hour-long session, walk away having written a brand-new song that never before existed, playing on loop in our heads. Boost your creative confidence. What’s more empowering than that? Appropriate for the young musician in your life, ukulele players, and kids of all ages. 1.5 hour long workshop.
Chord Melody: Writing Tunes for Solo Ukulele
For any melody you write, there’s a chord progression that can go underneath it. Together we’ll explore writing a friendly melody on the ukulele and pairing it with the perfect chord progression. Next, we’ll select the perfect strumming or fingerpicking pattern to showcase that melody. You’ll walk away with the tools to write your own solo uke arrangements: working them out, polishing them up, at home. 1.5 hour long workshop.
Chord Melody: Arranging Tunes for Solo Ukulele
I’ve heard tunes arranged for solo ukulele that are among the sweetest, most intimate, compelling musical pieces I can think of. Here we’ll explore how chords, melody, strumming and fingerpicking patterns can fit together on the ukulele to create beautiful solo ukulele arrangements. Some examples: Hanalei Moon, Ain’t Misbehaving. I’ll come prepared with a variety of tunes you can polish up at home, and you’ll come away with those tabs and the tools needed to create your own ukulele chord melody arrangements. It’s a swell place to be—practicing melodies on the uke and doing the musical math to find out how best the piece can best be arranged. 1.5 hour long workshop.
Jam in Any Key: A New Method for Learning Moveable Chord Shapes on the Ukulele
Amazingly enough, the uke essentially has just three major chord shapes. By establishing one of those shapes as “home base,” you can intuitively find the other chords in the song. Jared Putnam has developed a way of charting out these chord relationships not in terms of their lettered names but in terms of their function in the scale: as Roman numerals (I, ii, IV, V, etc.). This workshop is essential for the uke player who is familiar with music theory and wants to deepen their relationship their ukulele. 1 or 1.5 hour workshop.