Kickstarter: Astro Folding Ukulele

Astro - the first folding ukulele (
Astro – the first folding ukulele (

“Astro is an electric soprano ukulele. The body and the neck are composed by two separated parts, molded in composite wood, an innovative and ecologic material, obtained 100% from natural resources…

Thanks to our special patented mechanism, that connects the rotation of the neck to the floating bridge, it is possible to fold the ukulele without releasing or removing the strings.”

Visit the Website to learn more about it!

Other mentions:

Amy Kucharik says the Ukulele ‘delivers the songs I write’

Amy Kucharik (source:
Amy Kucharik (source: Rockland posted “Sounds Around Town: Amy Kucharik makes a lot of music on four strings

“…Kucharik’s first instrument was piano (“I never excelled at it.”). She then moved on to French horn (“Neither that nor the piano inspired me to be a songwriter.”), then guitar (“That was a slow learning curve for me.”), before meeting up with the ukulele, which has absolutely inspired her.

“What’s neat about the ukulele is that with just four strings you can have a lot of fun with alternate voicings up the neck, and jazzy chords,” she said. “I don’t play the ukulele just to play the ukulele. I play it as a way to deliver the songs that I write.”

Play by ear? No? Check out ‘The Toneway Project’

The Toneway Project has been around many years but I’ve just learned about it.  I’m quite interested because I am addicted to music books and don’t try hard enough to play by ear.  I know very few of the songs but I’m learning to play a little better by ear.

Ex: recently I considered buying a ‘glow-in-the-dark’ Makala Waterman and then it occurred to me if it was dark then I couldn’t see my music and couldn’t play any songs. Sad!

You can learn to ‘jam’ by ear. I CAN learn to ‘jam’ by ear.  NO songbooks or songsheets. Let’s do it!

 Going to a bluegrass jam group introduced me to ‘The ToneWay Project’. They offer some great products BUT you don’t need to buy a thing to benefit as their Website offers a lot!
 – Ukulele lesson videos (first one is about 30 min. others are 9-15 minutes or so) –
 – Sound clips of many songs that are featured in their books-
AND much, much more.
A couple of the leaders in the jam have a book from ‘The ToneWay Project’ called ‘Family Tradition Songbook’. It has 371 songs with words but no chord charts or letters (only numbers like 1, 4 and 5). It is only $.7.95.

There are even a special method book and a songbook for the ukulele.

 BUT the point is you don’t even need books.
I’ll close this post with their motto:
“Many think you must get good to play with others. We say it’s better to play with others to get good.” Source:

Playing the Ukulele is great therapy – even for an injured goalie!

Justin Sheely is a high school soccer goalie who credits the ukulele for helping her through a season of injury - The Sheridan Press
Justin Sheely is a high school soccer goalie who credits the ukulele for helping her through a season of injury – The Sheridan Press (Wyoming)

“Zoie Jones won’t brag about it, but her teammates will implore her to play (her ukulele) more…

Jones started playing the ukulele…

as a way to relieve stress during a hip injury…

that cost Jones a full year of eligibility couldn’t keep her down. It allowed her to grow as a soccer player mentally … and it gave her an added talent in the ukulele.”

Read Zoie’s story!

NY Post: Watch the queen’s favorite ukulele band cover ‘Highway to Hell’

A quote from the NY Post article, “Watch the queen’s favorite ukulele band cover ‘Highway to Hell’:

“They’ve plucked their way into Windsor Castle, Carnegie Hall and China. Now, the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain is tinkling across America with a set list Tiny Tim never imagined: a mix of Tchaikovsky, Nirvana and “Highway to Hell.”

“And that, says one longtime orchestra member, is partly what makes the little uke so great…”




Determine the BPM of a song’s tempo

Determining Beats Per Minute of a song to use a Metronome
Determining Beats Per Minute of a song to use a Metronome

On a metronome you set the ‘BPM’ or ‘Beats Per Minute’. Occasionally the BPM is marked on music.

If you don’t know the BPM you can determine it using one of many apps or by using Here is what you do…

Determine the BPM of a song’s tempo.

Use the space bar to tap each beat. The BPM (beats per minute) will be automatically computed to determine the tempo of a song. The more beats you provide, the more accurate the resulting BPM will be.

There are separate directions for using touchscreen.

Here are manual instructions for determining BPM of a song via