Review Kihei Library July Show

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

This was our third library program this year as sponsored by the University of Hawaii Statewide Cultural Extension Program.

It was standing room only for The Hawaiian Serenaders “Story of the ‘Ukulele and Concert” at Kihei Public Library on Tuesday night, July 11. The venue was spacious, air conditioned, and had lots of parking, all which contributed to 49 people in attendance (the largest audience we’ve had so far at a public library). Plus, the library’s advertising efforts were great on the state library website and in the local newspapers. We got this gig because the children’s librarian heard about us from her sister who has taken my ‘ukulele classes.

“Are you the famous Mele Fong?” asked a volunteer at the library as were setting up. “We’ve seen your YouTube videos,” commented a local man before the program started.

This was the third program we presented this year at a public library as sponsored by the University of Hawai’i Statewide Cultural Extension Program. New this time, we used the library’s PA system and we had a hula dancer, Janet Rineer, who performs in our Maui Ukulele Pops Band. We also added another banjo ukulele song and replaced a contemporary hapa haole song with a pop medley in a minor key.

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

It was standing room only with 49 people attending our “Story of the ‘Ukulele and Concert” at Kihei Library on July 11.

The program included a display of different types of ‘ukulele ranging from soprano, concert, and tenor instruments with 4, 6, and 8 strings and what they sound like. Plus we took my dad’s banjo ‘ukulele and played two songs on it. We gave a history of the ‘ukulele, and performed Hawaiian, hapa haole, and pop songs to demonstrate the diversity of music that can be played on Hawai’i’s official instrument. Rich gave a special demo of his ‘ukulele bass and played instrumental solos on it. We also led a sing-along.

We played the following ten songs and why:

  1. Koni Au I Ka Wai – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (history-King Kalakaua patronage)
  2. Puamana – I Wanna Rest Strum with hula (uke began as rhythm accompaniment to singers)
  3. Bill Bailey – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (on banjo uke)
  4. Uwehi Ami & Slide – I Wanna Rest Strum (merging instrumental picking into local song)
  5. Medley: Summertime/Moondance – I Wanna Rest/4And Strum (minor key contemporary)
  6. Lahaina – Latin Strum (pop example with sing-along on chorus)
  7. Ulupalakua – ‘Ōlapa Strum with hula (Hawaiian place name song & story behind the song)
  8. Medley: Maui Waltz/Pua Lilia – 2 Waltz Strums: Thumb Strum Up/Chicken Pluck (3/4 time example)
  9. Blues in the Night – 4And Strum (change genre and change to uke with high A for picking riff)
  10. Fly Me To the Moon – Latin Strum (features u-bass solo and change genre)
www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

A hula dancer did 2 songs during the program.

Afterwards, a lady thanked the library’s branch manager (who was standing in front of us) for having us perform. A young boy returned with his dad and asked if he could hold an ‘ukulele. In a few minutes I taught him to play “Are You Sleeping?” a simple 1-chord children’s song with all down strums and he did great. As we were leaving the library, a staff person behind the book counter said “You guys were great.”

The library’s branch manager was very pleased with our program. We received a thank you note from our contact the children’s librarian who was sorry she wasn’t able to attend our performance, “but I’ve heard wonderful reports of your concert and presentation.”

‘Ukulele players are invited to visit our free online Fan Club to listen to over 100 songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons. No one else teaches my method of forming ‘ukulele chords with minimal muscle strain or strumming unique rhythms on the ‘ukulele.

For more information about our entertainment services, Visit our Hawaiian Serenaders webpage or photo galleries.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Sing Patriotic Songs for July

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

Patriotic Songs is July’s theme for the Sing-Along with Mele Series on July 20. Sign up now at Kaunoa Senior Center.

In celebration of the 4th of July, join us for the next Sing-Along with Mele Fong series: Patriotic  Songs on Thursday, July 20 from 10 a.m. – noon at Kaunoa Senior Center for adults 55 and better.

This program is one of a monthly series that evokes the feeling of sing-along with Mitch Miller programs as the lyrics and ‘ukulele chords are projected on the large screen in the front of room for everyone to follow. ‘Ukulele players are invited to bring instruments to play along as I lead everyone by singing and playing my uke while my husband accompanies us on ‘ukulele bass. Don’t worry if you don’t know the ‘ukulele chords or the unique strumming pattern for the songs. The focus is on singing the songs, finding out the stories behind them, and enjoying the group experience.

Why do people keep returning? “It’s fun!” is what I’ve heard.

Lunch is optional and recommended as a good time to meet people who enjoy learning the Ukulele Mele Way. Kaunoa Senior Center is located in Spreckelsville, Maui.

SIGN UP NOW by calling 808-270-7308.

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Other learning options with Ukulele Mele:

Whether you are a beginnerintermediate, or advanced ‘ukulele player, you can have fun learning to play the Ukulele Mele Way from wherever you live!

Aloha, Mele Fong, aka Ukulele Mele

Review Lahaina Library July Show

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

The Hawaiian Serenaders presented “Story of the ‘Ukulele and Concert” on July 1 for the second time at Lahaina Library.

“We’ve seen your YouTube videos and our daughter pays the uke,” commented a man who came early to our July 1st program at Lahaina Public Library. “Our friend Madeleine, the librarian, told us about it,” answered a woman when asked how they heard about our program.

Nine people including a family with teenagers came to our second presentation of “Story of the ‘Ukulele and Concert” at the Lahaina Public Library. We first gave the program on Wednesday, April 26 for an audience of 50-5th graders from a nearby public school who had requested a music program (read review). The librarian was so pleased with our program that she asked us to return this time on a Saturday to attract the general public. This time after the program, she mentioned possibly bringing us back in the fall.

The Hawaiian Serenaders are available to provide educational music programs to the public through the University of Hawai’i Statewide Cultural Extension Program. In this program we displayed our personal collection of different types of ‘ukulele ranging from soprano, concert, and tenor instruments with 4, 6, and 8 strings. Plus we took my dad’s banjo ‘ukulele and played a song on it. We gave a history of the ‘ukulele, and performed Hawaiian, hapa haole, and pop songs to demonstrate the diversity of music that can be played on Hawai’i’s official instrument. Rich gave a special demo of his ‘ukulele bass and played instrumental solos on it. We also led a sing-along.

Here is our song list of 10 songs including 4 with Hawaiian lyrics

  1. Koni Au I Ka Wai – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (history-King Kalakaua patronage)
  2. Puamana – I Wanna Rest Strum (uke began as rhythm accompaniment to singers)
  3. Bill Bailey – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (on banjo uke)
  4. Uwehi Ami & Slide – I Wanna Rest Strum (merging instrumental picking into local song)
  5. Lahainaluna – I Wanna Rest Strum (Kui Lee began contemporary sound of local music in 1960s)
  6. Lahaina – Latin Strum (pop example with sing-along on chorus)
  7. Ulupalakua – ‘Ōlapa Strum (Hawaiian place name song & story behind the song)
  8. Medley: Maui Waltz/Pua Lilia – 2 Waltz Strums: Thumb Strum Up/Chicken Pluck (3/4 time example)
  9. Blues in the Night – 4And Strum (change genre and change to uke with high A for picking riff)
  10. Fly Me To the Moon – Latin Strum (features u-bass solo and change genre)
www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

Some of the audience who stayed after program. The lady in pink next to Mele got up and danced hula to Ulupalakua.

Our next presentation of “Story of the ‘Ukulele and Concert” will be Tuesday, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. at Kihei Public Library in south Maui. It’s free!

Visit our Hawaiian Serenaders webpage or photo galleries or visit our free online Fan Club to listen to over 100 songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Song of the Month for July

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

The Medley: Summertime/Moondance is July’s Song of the Month. Learn to play it with two unique ‘ukulele strums.

In celebration of the summer season, learn to play a Medley: Summertime/Moondance for July’s “Song of the Month.” This pop medley combines “Summertime” written by Dubose Howard and George Gershwin in 1934 and “Moondance” written by Van Morrison in 1969.  Both songs go together well in style and story.

LEARN HOW TO PLAY IT WITH 2 UNIQUE ‘UKULELE STRUMS. HERE’S HOW:

  1. Listen to our audio recording.
  2. Schedule private webcam lessons.

I will send you the PDF song sheets of my arrangement and teach you how to play it with I Wanna Rest Strum and 4 And Strum. The song is in the key of Em and uses 8 chords – perfect for intermediate ‘ukulele players.

  • No need to read music.
  • Get feedback from a professional educator and entertainer with over 50 years of ‘ukulele playing and entertaining experience.
  • Learn my method of forming ukulele chord shapes with minimal muscle strain and unique strumming styles taught by no one else.

Want a different song? Visit my online Fan Club and listen to over 100 audio recordings of Hawaiian, hapa haole, pop, and Christmas songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons via webcam or on Maui.

Have fun learning to Watch. Listen. Play. The Ukulele Mele Way today!

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Review Small Kid Time Songs 2017

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

Rich Tom and Mele Fong led “Sing-Along with Mele Fong – Small Kid Time Songs” on June 22 at Kaunoa Senior Center

Before the program, a grandmother with two small children under the age of 8 asked, “Are we singing Old McDonald Had A Farm?” I replied that we’d be singing songs that adults may remember singing from childhood, but not necessarily children’s songs. There’s a difference.  After the program, they expressed their enjoyment.

Twenty-four people signed up for my monthly Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Small Kid Time Songs on Thursday, June 22 at Kaunoa Senior Center for adults 55 and better. The audience included four children under the age of 8 who came with their grandmothers. I had considered the idea for this special inter-generational program at the start of summer and finally offered it new this year. The singing was louder this time as more people sang the familiar songs. Only two songs were in the Hawaiian language. I prepared 12 songs, but at the end of 9 songs the length of the program was just past an hour and it seemed a good time to wind down. The “Sing-Along with Mitch Miller” format of projecting the song lyrics and ‘ukulele chords on a screen at the front of the room, and having my husband provide the u-bass line to fill in the lower tones to the higher pitched ‘ukulele works just great! Plus singing happy songs is fun!

Here are the 11 small kid time songs we learned:

  1. Froggie Went A-Courtin’ – Hum Ding-Ah Strum.*
  2. Take Me Out to the Ballgame – 2 Waltz Strums.
  3. She’ll Be Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain – Hum Ding-Ah Strum.
  4. Boy From Laupāhoehoe – ‘Ōlapa Strum (Hawaiian language).
  5. You Are My Sunshine – Hum Ding-Ah Strum.
  6. The More We Get Together – 2 Waltz Strums.
  7. I’ve Been Working on the Railroad – 4And Rest/Tom Tom Strum.
  8. One Paddle, Two Paddle – I Wanna Rest Strum.*
  9. Que Sera, Sera – 2 Waltz Strums.*
  10. Oh Susanna – Hum Ding-Ah Strum.
  11. Hawaii Aloha – Morse Code Strum.

HERE’S HOW TO PLAY THE ABOVE SONGS FROM WHEREVER YOU LIVE:

  1. Listen to the audio recordings from the free online Fan Club and then schedule private lessons on Maui or via webcam. I will send you the song sheet and give you feedback.
  • From the Pop Songs Category – Froggie Went A-Courtin’, Take Me Out to the Ballgame, She’ll Be Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain, You Are My Sunshine, The More We Get Together, and Que Sera Sera.
  • From the Hapa Haole Songs Category – Boy From Laupāhoehoe (part of Laupāhoehoe Hula) and One Paddle, Two Paddle.
  • From the Hawaiian Songs Category – Hawaii Aloha.
  1. Download a single song purchase for $10 and get the song sheet, video lesson, audio recording, and video story behind the story in keeping with Hawaiian oral history traditions.

Stay tuned for the next Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Patriotic Songs on Thursday, July 20.

Visit my webpage about classes at Kaunoa and see photos from past classes for more.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

July 1st Lahaina Library Show

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

History of the ‘Ukulele and Concert by The Hawaiian Serenaders on July 1 at noon at Lahaina Public Library on Maui

Back by popular demand, The Hawaiian Serenaders will be presenting a program History of the ‘Ukulele and Concert on Saturday, July 1st at 12 noon at Lahaina Public Library. Come and learn about the ‘ukulele, Hawaii’s official instrument, including the types, parts, tuning, and how playing the ‘ukulele has evolved. Discover the stories behind the songs and enjoy a musical mixed plate concert as we embark on a musical journey through time. The program is sponsored by UH Statewide Cultural Extension Program and thus free to the public. Join us!

History of the ‘Ukulele and Concert
by The Hawaiian Serenaders
Saturday, July 1, 2017 at 12 noon
Lahaina Public Library
680 Wharf Street

Read the review about the April 26 show at the library.

Visit our Hawaiian Serenaders webpage or photo galleries or visit our free online Fan Club to listen to over 100 songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Song of the Month for June

Kamehameha the Great

Honor Kamehameha the Great with song

In celebration of Kamehameha Day on June 11, learn to play King Kamehameha the Conqueror of the Islands for June’s “Song of the Month.” This hapa haole song (Hawaiian style music with English words) was written by Johnny Noble and Ted Fiorito in 1934 and tells part of the story of the king’s conquests in English.

  1. Listen to our audio recording
  2. Schedule private webcam lessons to learn to play it from wherever you live.

I will send you the PDF song sheet for King Kamehameha and teach you how to play my arrangement with I Wanna Rest Strum and 4 And Strum. The song is in the key of C and uses 12 chords – perfect for intermediate ‘ukulele players.

  • No need to read music.
  • Get feedback from a professional educator and entertainer with over 50 years of ‘ukulele playing and entertaining experience.
  • Learn my method of forming ukulele chord shapes with minimal muscle strain and unique strumming styles taught by no one else.

Want a different song? Visit my online Fan Club and listen to over 100 audio recordings of Hawaiian, hapa haole, pop, and Christmas songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons via webcam or on Maui.

There is another song that ‘ukulele players can learn to play to honor King Kamehameha aka Kamehameha the Great. NA ALI’I is a traditional Hawaiian song that you can learn by downloading the song sheet, video lesson, audio recording and video story behind the story in keeping with Hawaiian oral history traditions.  BUY NOW.

Have fun learning to Watch. Listen. Play. The Ukulele Mele Way today!

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Review of Flower Songs 2017

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

Australian friends Jim and Julie were part of the 21 who attended our May Sing-Along with Mele Fong Program

We got a “thumbs up“ from our two friends from Australia at the conclusion of our Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Flower and Lei Songs on Thursday, May 4 at Kaunoa Senior Center for adults 55 and better. We first met Jim and Julie from Brisbane a few years ago when they heard us perform as the husband-wife duo The Hawaiian Serenaders at Queen Ka’ahumanu Center and then participated in our November ‘Ukulele Strumming Workshop at the Bailey House. They had encouraged us to present workshops at the Brisbane Ukulele Festival aka SPRUKE, but it didn’t work out. We were happy to see them back in Maui on vacation and happy they could attend one of my programs.

Here are the 9 flower and lei songs (including 4 hapa haole songs) we did in the program:

  1. May Day is Lei Day – Hum Ding-Ah Strum.
  2. Pua ‘Āhihi – I Wanna Rest Strum.
  3. For You A Lei – Bossa Nova/Latin Strums.
  4. Pua Lililehua – Morse Code Strum.
  5. My Yellow Ginger Lei – I Wanna Rest Strum.
  6. Pua Lilia – 2 Waltz Strums: Thumb Strum Up/Chicken Pluck.
  7. I’ll Weave a Lei of Stars For You – I Wanna Rest/Latin Strums.
  8. Pua Mae Ole – Pick in 4 Strum.
  9. Hawaii Aloha – Morse Code Strum.

HERE’S HOW TO PLAY THE ABOVE SONGS FROM WHEREVER YOU LIVE:

  1. Listen to the audio recordings from the free online Fan Club and then schedule private webcam lessons. I will send you the song sheet and give you feedback.

  1. Download a single song purchase for $10 and get the song sheet, video lesson, audio recording, and video story behind the story in keeping with Hawaiian oral history traditions.

Stay tuned for the next Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Small Kid Time Songs on Thursday, June 22. Visit my webpage about classes at Kaunoa and see photos from past classes for more information.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele

Sing Small Kid Time Songs For June 2017

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

Bring your uke to play along to the next Sing-Along program

In celebration of the start of summer, join us for the next Sing-Along with Mele Fong series: Small Kid Time Songs on Thursday, June 22 from 10 a.m. – noon at Kaunoa Senior Center for adults 55 and better. Reminisce with or without your grandchildren as you sing fun songs from childhood. You may have sung these songs around the campfire or on road trips in the family car.

This program is one of a monthly series that evokes the feeling of sing-along with Mitch Miller programs as the lyrics and ‘ukulele chords are projected on the large screen in front of the room for everyone to follow. ‘Ukulele players are invited to bring instruments to play along as I lead everyone by singing and playing my uke while my husband accompanies us on ‘ukulele bass. Don’t worry if you don’t know the ‘ukulele chords or the unique strumming pattern for the songs. The focus is on singing the songs, finding out the stories behind them, and enjoying the group experience. “It’s fun!” is what people people tell me brings them back time after time. See photos from past classes. Visit my webpage about classes at Kaunoa.

Lunch is optional and recommended as a good time to meet people who enjoy learning the Ukulele Mele Way. Kaunoa Senior Center is located in Spreckelsville, Maui.

SIGN UP NOW by calling 808-270-7308.

**********************************************************

Other learning options with Ukulele Mele:

Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or advanced ‘ukulele player, you can have fun learning to play the Ukulele Mele Way from wherever you live!

Aloha, Mele Fong, aka Ukulele Mele

Review of ‘Ukulele Program at Lahaina Library

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

The Hawaiian Serenaders presented History of the ‘Ukulele and Concert to 50-5th graders and community adults.

As we were leaving the Lahaina Public Library after presenting History of the ‘Ukulele and Concert, we overheard the branch manager say “That was one of the best programs we’ve had” to a young man who was helping to put away the chairs. We certainly enjoyed ourselves and are thankful to the University of Hawai’i Statewide Cultural Extension Program who sponsored us. As a requirement of the University’s program, we made sure to provide an educational focus (not solely entertainment) for the audience.

On Wednesday, April 26, my husband Rich and I performing as the professional duo, The Hawaiian Serenaders, gave our 1-hour program to 50-5th graders and 5 community members. We displayed our personal collection of different types of ‘ukulele ranging from soprano, concert, and tenor instruments with 4, 6, and 8 strings. Plus we took my dad’s banjo ukulele and played a song on it. We gave a history of the ‘ukulele, and performed Hawaiian, hapa haole, and pop songs to demonstrate the diversity of music that can be played on Hawai’i’s official instrument. Rich gave a special demo of his ‘ukulele bass and played instrumental solos on it. We led sing-alongs with the audience and were amazed at how much the children knew about music.

www.UkuleleMeleOnMaui.com

We demonstrated a diversity of musical genres played on the ‘ukulele and ‘ukulele-bass.

Here is our song list of 11 songs including 4 with Hawaiian lyrics

  1. Koni Au I Ka Wai – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (history-King Kalakaua patronage)
  2. Puamana – I Wanna Rest Strum (uke began as rhythm accompaniment to singers)
  3. Bill Bailey – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (on banjo uke)
  4. Uwehi Ami & Slide – I Wanna Rest Strum (merging instrumental picking into local song)
  5. Lahainaluna – I Wanna Rest Strum (Kui Lee began contemporary sound of local music in 1960s)
  6. Lahaina – Latin Strum (pop example with sing-along on chorus)
  7. Maui Marathon – Hum Ding-Ah Strum (parody of Crystals song Do Run Run from 1960s)
  8. Ulupalakua – ‘Ōlapa Strum (Hawaiian place name song)
  9. Medley: Maui Waltz/Pua Lilia – 2 Waltz Strums: Thumb Strum Up/Chicken Pluck (3/4 time example)
  10. Blues in the Night – 4And Strum (change genre and change to uke with high A for picking riff)
  11. Fly Me To the Moon – Latin Strum (features u-bass solo and change genre)

After the program, the library branch manager sent us photos she had taken along with a note saying, “Everyone here enjoyed the program.” The next day at a private ‘ukulele lesson, I also received positive feedback from a new student who happens to be a retired teacher and had attended our program.

Visit our Hawaiian Serenaders webpage or photo galleries or visit our free online Fan Club to listen to over 100 songs you can learn to play the Ukulele Mele Way with private lessons.

Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele