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Shroton Ukulele Club 2016 Ode - Printable copy from PDF
What a busy, busy year it’s been
With all this ukulele-ing!
We’ve now done 80 gigs and counting
And with each one our funds are mounting.
So as the nights are drawing in
Once again I can start to dream
Of Anne and me strolling hand in hand
In Barbados along the sand
Who’d have thought? Who could have foreseen
Back in February 2014?
As you sat in eager anticipation
Waiting for a clear explanation
As to how to play the silly thing
That you’d gone out and bought, pretty much on a whim
From a charity shop. Were you out of your mind?
It had seemed such a good idea at the time
I stood at the front beside the white board
And drew lines and dots and said “This is a chord!
Press down with your fingers – give it a go!”
I could sense that progress was going to be slow
Soon there was an air of gathering gloom
For your fingers there just wasn’t enough room
You squeezed and you shoved but it was no good
It just didn’t sound the way that it should
Lucky for me some Shaftesbury friends
Had come down to see what our club might portend
They’d all been playing their ukes for a while
To see us all struggling didn’t half make ‘em smile!
But they gave us some confidence and helped us believe
That with some practice we too might achieve
A level of competence to go out and gig
Who knows? One day we might make it big!
So we got through those tricky early days
Where once there was criticism, now there was praise
“You’ve got a lot better” folks started to say
Flamboyantly throwing their ear-plugs away
Of course it hasn’t all been plain sailing
There’s been lots of moaning, lots of complaining
I considered leaving and moving to China
Until you’d mastered your C and A minor
But then came the day of our very first gig
They asked “What’s your fee?” and I said “£50”
By now we looked smart in our waistcoats and ties
A treat for both the ears and the eyes
What a seminal moment that was!
After each song we drew some applause
They liked what we offered, they made us feel great
And what’s more they fed us with tea and with cake!
And so pretty much from that moment on
We’ve enjoyed performing and singing our songs
And over this last year we’ve really got better
Even Jim Bird and his triple carburretor!
Alan chats up the ladies – they don’t seem to mind –
One day we may just leave him behind
Sid becomes Biggles in front of their eyes
While Malc does his Elvis, shaking his thighs
It’s all such a laugh, it’s all such a joy
And as well as keeping us usefully employed
It allows us inside Dorset’s local care homes
To see which one one day we’d like as our own
That’s in the future; for now, full of vim,
We strum and we sing, our voices undimmed
A very merry Xmas to all of you here
And I wish you a melodious and happy New Year!
February 2017- Presentation
The Shroton Ukulele Club gathered to present Roger Morgan, of the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance, with a cheque for £500. The Ukes had raised the money from last year's concerts in care homes around North Dorset. Roger said a few words in appreciation, pointing out how his organisation depends on voluntary contributions like this to carry out their work.
Each month we will profile one of our members by posing them them a series of set questions.
This month it is our very own Christine Stone
Question : Where were you born
In my grandmothers bedroom with her acting as mid-wife accompanied by the sound of the Salvation Army playing carols at the window.
Question : What other interest do you have
I belong to Local Vocals. We sing for fun and busk for charity. Singing makes me happy and is good for the soul. We sing folks songs and modern songs (like the Cha Cha, Sway) and Maori and African songs. I delight at singing Nkosi Sikele iAfrika from memory with hardly a clue what the words mean.
Question: Are there any more musicians in the family?
My father played the harmonica and the piano accordion. He played for free in his local pub by request from keen drinkers. He wasn’t allowed to play at home. He perfected the art of playing whilst holding a small glass filled with golden liquid, more suited to the bagpipes. He didn’t perfect the accordion. My husband taught himself to play the keyboard and progressed to the piano. However he knew he was really born to play the saxophone. He really is good, but doesn’t believe it. He has two saxophones which are lovingly embalmed, lying in state in their velvet lined caskets waiting to be resurrected. I’m sure we could one day live very well on his busking income.
Question : Do you play any other instruments ?
At the age of 50 I asked myself what I would regret not doing and it was to be able to play the piano. So I sat down and taught myself. I can play a little, somethings quite well. It all falls apart if I have to play when someone is listening. Come to think of it, a little golden liquid might help me!
Question : What attracted you to the ukulele:?
Well, I never wanted to play the Ukulele, but it was my friend’s lifelong dream. She bought a Uke one Christmas and hadn’t opened the box at Easter. So I got one to encourage her to play, which had the opposite effect and she very soon sold hers. Not one to waste money, I persevered in the hope it would grow on me. It’s fun and easy to play but the best bit is playing with others Ukers. After a shaky start and getting chucked out of the first group, I happened upon some lovely people who seem to welcome me, if I behave!
Question : What`s your favourite style of music ?
Apart from Salvation Army bands I like Big Band dance music. Classical and all music that rouse my emotions, and make me feel something. (with the exception of certain emotions like depression).
Question : What`s your favourite song/instrumental:
“Music is the source of all gladness, heals thy sadness” Music ever divine source, Aren’t Thou troubled, by Handel. (with the exception of certain music which doesn’t apply to Handel’s).
Question: What further ambitions do you have?
To live long enough to draw my state pension. I came tantalising close twice but I intend to get them back with my longevity and make em pay.
Question : If you could take just one item on a desert island what would it:
A solar power computer so that I can do a weekly supermarket shop for a £5 delivery charge. Now let’s see; tonic and some gin to dilute it, ice cubes, sun lotion, artisan bread, matches and a mirror ...