Since the midterm, I have managed to sing and play the ukulele at the same time and even learned another song! It wasn’t as difficult as I thought it’d be, as I was already thinking of the lyrics in my head while strumming the chords. With consistent practice, I was able to work on the following for the song “Can’t help falling in love”:
- Having a more relaxed strumming hand. Before, I was focused so much on what my left hand was doing and what chords to play that I didn’t pay much attention to what my strumming hand was doing. Now that I am more comfortable with the chords, I have a more relaxed strumming hand. However, there is definitely room for improvement especially during the bridge section with single downward strums.
- Smoother transition between chords. I had trouble with my chord transitions in the beginning, specifically shifting from one chord to the G chord and making sure that all the strings sound. With practice and better positioning of my ukulele, I am now able to move faster and more smoothly between different chords.
- Using different strumming patterns. For my midterm, I did a simple D-D strum for each chord of the entire song. I thought it would be good to change up the pattern so I did a D-D-U-U-D-U pattern for the second verse of the song.
Here is the link to the video of me playing this song: https://vimeo.com/327173306
The second song that I chose to learn is called “happier” by Ed Sheeran. This song only involves three chords (Am, F, and C) and they are on the easier side, so I decided to fingerpick the beginning part to make it sound more interesting and to make it more challenging. I like how this song lets me focus more on singing because the chords are simple and repetitive. One thing that I can work on for fingerpicking is making sure I don’t play the C string too loud. This can be hard to do because I use my thumb to play this string which is stronger than the rest of my fingers.
Here is the link: https://vimeo.com/326729540
Some things that I still have to work on include my thumb placement on the back of the fingerboard and making all my chords sound especially the transitioning to the G chord in “I can’t help falling in love.” I also want to experiment with using a pick for strumming. I will continue to work on these songs and fully memorize them so I can perform them to friends and family!