Sweet Jesus, there are now less than 20 days until in-depth night.
Many things have happened after my last post, and I learned a lot in general. First things first, I scraped together some of my own money and purchased a slightly better ukulele that didn’t go out of tune every 5 minutes. Yes, my mother wasn’t happy, but I needed it (oops…).
This new ukulele is a Kala ukulele, an actual brand, that has a clearer sound than the other one I had.
I have mastered the song “Banana Pancakes”, but a little problem arose in the middle of making my presentation for in-depth night.
The song’s key was too low. Yes, I could sing it, but it sounded quite frankly, terrible. I panicked because I thought that I ran out of time to learn anything else, so I talked to Hira about it. She thought me learning this song was very beneficial for my general learning in ukulele and it helped my fingers more flexible, so it’s not wasted time. Hira and I took some time to search songs that I can learn now for the performance, and we’ve looked on Sunday Morning, Officially Missing you, WIsh you were gay, and a bunch of other songs. I told Hira that I wanted to learn SOME fingerpicking as I need to demonstrate learning, and chords seem relatively easier to an audience that doesn’t play this instrument. I know this because I thought ukulele was going to be an easy ride. It is not, by the way. It’s more difficult than I thought.
Last Tuesday, I brought my ukulele to school and showed Hira what I can do now. My chord transitions with G, D7, Am, C7 are quite smooth and my riff was good. I told her that I was struggling to find a song that I can both sing and play while demonstrating adequate learning. We sat down together and did some research, and I mentioned “let her go” by Passenger. Hira and I talked about it and at the end of the session, we agreed to do it.
So now, that is my final choice, a choice I didn’t make on my own but with my Mentor!!
Today, I met with Hira again. There were so many different versions of this song, some just chords, some just fingerpicking, some both, and some of which sounded pretty darn horrible, to be frank.
Hira and I tried to go through every version we could find and search for the best sounding and intermediate level arrangement. We agreed on the one “ukutabs” provided over the written tabs I initially found, which turned out to sound odd. Today I also learned what “hammering” was in the ukulele. I tried the technique and it turned out to be far too difficult for me to try to learn in the amount of time I have, so we decided not to use it, but try picking faster to smoothen transitions.
Hira and I will be meeting again next Monday. We will be meeting much more often now because:
a. Musical theatre is over for her
b. Time is scarce
c. I need one on one time in learning rather than using time correcting my own mistakes.
How to have a beautiful mind:
De Bono writes, “Alternatives of action and of ideas are about the future. . . .Alternatives of explanation and perception; however, are about the present and the past” (p. 135).
What alternatives have your mentor offered you throughout this project? What alternatives may another mentor have offered you? Discuss in detail.
In terms of finding alternative solutions to problems, the first thing that pops up into mind is when I was anxious about finding a new song. De Bono talks about three different types of alternatives, but I will be talking about the Action Alternatives:
- Think of known alternatives
- Then ask what other alternatives may be available
When I realized my initial choice of song wouldn’t be a good performance, I immediately started doing my own research of songs to find some alternatives. Like mentioned above, I found a few songs that I could sing and didn’t have terribly difficult chords.
I later saw Hira and consulted her what else I could do. She calmed me down and told me that there is still time to practice other songs and that I could definitely mix riffs and chords like I did before and she showed me a few songs and helped me narrow it down.
…I have calluses on my fingers.
That’s a good thing, in guitar and ukulele.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention: I am helping out Albert with his guitar performance. He asked me to sing a very high-key song, so I told Hira about it and as you know, Hira is very experienced in singing. She suggested that if he and I both had the time, we could come to her together and get a few tips on singing.
This is going to be fun.