Greetings, friends! Our next monthly meeting is fast approaching, on Thursday, June 8, 7:00–9:00pm. It was great to have so many ukulele players, from near and far, at our May meeting! We hope you are looking forward to plenty of sunshine, as we kick off the first official month of summer. We’ll meet, as usual, at the Memorial United Methodist Church, located at 6100 Berkman Drive, Austin, TX, 78723.
Often called the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll, the amazing Tina Turner passed away in late May. We’ll pay tribute to arguably one of the best performers of all time by learning to strum and sing her 1989 internationally-loved hit “The Best.” The broad appeal of its uplifting lyrics along with Turner’s terrific performance have kept this song popular through the decades; we know you’ll enjoy getting to know it well if you’re not yet familiar with it.
Turner’s 1989 recording is in the key of F, then modulates to G after the bridge. Bob’s arrangement is just like the original, except he dropped the saxophone solo that follows the bridge and kept the same key throughout. Since his arrangement is in the same key (with the exception of the last chorus), you can play along with Turner up to the sax solo. Bob also made a helpful play-along practice track that exactly matches his arrangement. 🙂
To practice, you can preview or download the song sheet for “The Best.” Play along with this practice track! 🙂
Here are some details about the song sheet:
- Pages 1 and 2 have the lyrics and chords.
- Page 3 shows the strum pattern, with a simplified option.
- Page 3 also has additional details for the strum pattern in the verses.
- Page 4 has tab for a picking part during the choruses.
- Pages 5 and 6 have vocal harmony options for the choruses.
As always, we recommend practicing the song using the song sheet, Tina Turner’s recording, and the play-along practice track before the 8th, if possible. 🙂
At the meeting, Bob will perform “The Best” to demonstrate the arrangement, and then take us through some helpful exercises to get us comfortable with the chords and chord progressions, strum styles, vocal and harmonizing options, before we put it all together to play it through.
Our meeting format, as usual, will begin with introductions and some local ukulele news/events. We’ll also include some open mic time for those of you who’d like to showcase one tune you’ve been working on. A sign-up sheet will be available at 6:30. As open mic time is limited to four participants, please sign up when you arrive and understand that preference will be given to those who have not participated recently or ever before.
After the open mic portion of the eve, we’ll play through our new-to-us song again and record a performance video. We’ll share this video on our YouTube channel about a week after the meeting – so please subscribe if you haven’t yet, and you’ll be notified when the video is available.
Ukulele Society T-shirts!
We’ll have Austin Ukulele Society t-shirts available for purchase before and after our meeting, including our brand-new “Classic Ukulele,” design, hot off the presses! All of our shirts are thoughtfully designed by the talented Lyda Guz! You can have a look at all of our shirt styles on the “Shop” page
The shirts are silk screened here in Austin at a fantastic locally-owned print shop and are available for purchase at our meetings for $25. We also have vinyl decals with the AUS logo for $1 each. Please bring cash or a check made out to Austin Ukulele Society; you can also pay via our Square shop.
Memorial United Methodist Church, 6100 Berkman Drive, Austin, TX 78723. We meet in the school located behind the church, in the gym.
Where to park and find the gym
For those attending for the first time, the church is easy to find – but it is big. You’ll enter from Berkman Dr. using a ‘one way’ entrance and you can park anywhere alongside or behind the church. Past the canopied main entrance, on the same side of the building, there is another entrance on the right. Walk in there and you’ll be in the gym. From there simply follow the sounds of ukuleles tuning up. 🙂
Newcomers and beginners are ALWAYS welcome! Even if you’re a complete novice, we encourage you to come out. Many beginners come to the meetings, and it’s so great to see their skills grow over time! There are almost always easier ways to play the songs, even if you can play only a few of the chords. Or just sing along!
For the monthly meetings, our friend Lori brings loaner ukuleles, donated by the TUG (Tuesday Ukulele Group)! They are Makala concert and soprano ukes, and you can borrow one to play during the meeting. You’ll find them at the front of the room; so if you don’t have a uke yet, or you forget your uke at home, or your uke is in disrepair, please join us and borrow a TUG loaner uke. 🙂
Feel free to get familiar with the chord charts for any of the songs in our repertoire, all available on the “Music Library” page. We always play “Three Little Birds” and “On the Road Again” as our opening and closing songs, so if you’re new to the group and want to get familiar with them, you can play along using the presentations and our videos.
Stay tuned and keep strumming! We’re looking forward to seeing everyone on Thursday, June 8, at 7:00pm!
Contact Us if you have any questions, need more information, or would like to be added to our mailing list.
With regard to COVID-19, we need your help in mitigating the risk of spreading the virus in the following ways:
- Attend only if you’re feeling well.
- If you have recently had close contact with someone who has recently tested positive for COVID-19 and you yourself have tested negative, please wear a mask.
- While Travis County remains in the low risk of transmission category, wearing a mask at MUMC is optional.
- You are always encouraged to wear a mask if you feel more comfortable doing so.
- If you would like additional information about COVID-19, please visit the CDC’s website.
The Austin Ukulele Society team will do our part to mitigate risk by:
- Making disposable masks and hand sanitizer available
- Spreading seating out as needed
- Opening a couple of doors to improve air flow, if the temperatures allow