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Live Streaming, Learning Ukulele with Curt on YouTube
Every Thursday at 1100 (USA) (-4UTC) • To Road to Improvising
Welcome to Learning Ukulele with Curt
The most compreshensive `Ukulele site on the web. • LearningUkulele.com, Learning Ukulele with Curt has more than just lessons. It has the most comprehensive collection of listings for Instruments, Luthiers, Ukulele Gear, Clubs, Festivals, Strings, Cases, Cables, and Loads of Ukulele Links from around the World Wide Web. And, pretty much anything ukulele related is all here. I've been a sort of digital pack rat over the years and have collected a massive amount of information surrounding the ukulele. I'm constantly researching and finding new information to put on the site. All for only $9 a month or $81 a year OR pay once and never pay again.
UPDATED: 25 Oct 2021
October 7-8-9, 2021 (Live in Person Festival)
No Tricks • No Secrets • No Shortcuts • Nothing for Dummies — and you're NOT going to learn the ukulele in 7 days or 30 days or even master it in your lifetime. You enjoy the ride, explore, and have a lifetime of fun! And, learn by simply sticking with it!
And, of course becoming a member of LearningUkulele.com and Learning Ukulele with Curt — Curt.
Here are few more Snake Oil pitches you get on-line BUT NOT here on LearningUkulele.com:
Learn Step-by-Step and Master the UKULELE in less than 30 day • Step-by-step is good depending on the steps but — 30 days — really!Ask any successful musician how long it took them to get where they are. Most will say they are still learning and working towards their goals.
Practice Only a Few Minutes X Days a Week • We've all seen these claims for achieving something with little effort. YOU HAVE TO PUT THE TIME & WORK IN. • You get out what you put in. Every day is actually one of the secrets. It's just like saving for the future. Save one dollar or euro a week, or save one dollar or euro a day — Who has more money one year later. You would be surprised at the young students who don't know is 52 vs 364 (365 on leap years).
Learn Without Learning Scales or Getting Bogged Down with Fancy Theory • You wouldn't try to be a writer without learning about the alphabet, words, nouns, adjectives, pronouns, and the grammar that puts it all together. Music is no different — the established principles of music that have worked for centuries and are based on the science of sound and acoustics. Pretty must everything in music originates from some sort of collection of notes, i.e.,Scales. However, you can and should learn the principles of music at some point. It does cut down on the amount of information you need to memorize in the long term.
Learn to Play Like (insert your favorite artist's name here) • There is already one of them and countless wannabe clones. Learn to unleash your inner musician / artist. BE THE BEST YOU CAN BE — As there can ever only be one of you. As Dr. Seuss said Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You. However, you can and should learn the sources that your favorite players have drawn from, as you can draw from those same sources.
Sorry there is not magic potion for learning the ukulele and music. So, after you've tried all the other Quick & Easy methods — And, haven't gotten the results you're looking for – it's most likely not your or your effort – it's most likely the methods, sources, and teachers that you have been using. Time to put the pieces together.
Proven Methods - If there's one thing that I've learned over the 3040 plus years of serious study, research, and application — as well as from my weekly interaction with the 40 to 60 students each and every week. — It's that everyone is different. I can adapt to pretty much anything and have a multitude of ways of teaching any given topic. I CAN find what works for you - that IS my role in this and goal to help you learn and develop your voice on the ukulele.
The only guarantee I can make with my methods and guidance is — if you put the time and work in you WILL get results. I, my mentors, and my students have been down all the same roads that your starting to go down.
One thing that I've found over the years is that EVERY musician you admire probably started right where you and I started.
The Secret is – There is no Secret, it is hard work!
No Lets Get to Work!
In an era, where when so many of the great Jazz Ukulele players have gone on to play in the angel band, Curt rightly steps up to be my personal favorite when it comes to jazz on the ukulele. His musical knowledge is unending and his improvisational chops are #1. When the planets align and we're able to jam it's a real thrill. - Lil' Rev
Live Streaming Every Thursday at 11am EDT (East Coast USA) (-4UTC)
Topics will include pretty much anything from what I'm currently working on to going over specific LearningUkulele.com lessons, lesson series, songs. Any questions and we can simple chat.
Don't Get Around Much Anymore: the Muse and Magic of JAZZ UKULELE MAVEN CURT SHELLER by Lil' Rev
by Lil' Rev Published: Summer, 2019, UKulele Magazine
If the ukulele world had its own trading cards, there would be no shortage of superheroes. We know their names and have heard many of them at festivals and on YouTube, except perhaps one, whose humble and unassuming manner might have caused you to overlook his cool jazz stylings. Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce to you, Curt Sheller.
By day—and often into the night—Sheller plies his trade teaching an impressive load of private lessons (over 60 students a week) from Funky Frets, a music store he opened with his wife Bernadette and daughter Kelly Thompson in Boyertown, Pennsylvania.
No Tricks • No Secrets • No Shortcuts • Nothing for Dummies — and you're NOT going to learn the ukulele in 7 days or 30 days or even master it in your lifetime. You just enjoy the ride, explore, and have a lifetime of fun!
And, you can see it all before you sign-up. No teasers.
Now, What You — “WILL” — Get
I develop ukulele players into musicians. Although my specialization is jazz, I work with and develop ukulele players in every style. Subjects taught include technique, chord work and applications, improvisation, solo ukulele, sight reading, ear training, theory, songwriting, and development of a performance repertoire and the skills to pull it all off. If you are taking private lessons with me or signed up for the two or four lessons a month online - we work on what your goals are.
With my, almost 40 plus years of serious study of music and 20 plus years of private teaching. I'm more than sure — I guarantee I can help you achieve your goals.
I haven't toured the world ( have played a bunch of USA `Ukulele festivals ) or played with this player and that player that you might know - so no name dropping here. I made a decision to stay at home, close to family and not travel. I've made a living as a professional musician and have been involved in music regionally and locally. And, with the Internet world wide.
“The self-taught man seldom knows anything accurately, and he does not know a tenth as much as he could have known if he had worked under teachers; and, besides, he brags, and is the means of fooling other thoughtless people into going and doing as he himself had done.” ― Mark Twain
My methods are customized and drawn from my background of teaching, performance, recording, publishing, research and my own thirty plus years of studying with world renowned jazz guitarist and educator Chuck Anderson . I just never stopped learning, exploring and researching music.
My private teaching programs are devoted to your learning and advancing your ukulele skill and chops and will help you while exploring any style of music - mainly contemporary and jazz ukulele styles. Jazz Ukulele requires the most information, knowledge, and technique of all styles of the ukulele. These programs will benefit any ukulele player trying to advance his or her skills and enjoyment on the ukulele.
Take advantage of my twenty plus years of teaching, forty years of intense study and research to help you advance in the art of the ukulele and become the ukulele player to match your goals.
Take a look around the site and checkout the many FREE lessons, my many books. Or, better yey support the site and sigh-up for for premium access.
Talk the Talk and Walk the Walk
Not only do I know what I'm doing, but can also explain in detail, many different ways what I do/did and guide you through the process for you to achieve your goals. Check out my Curt Sheller Jazz Trio, How About More Uke? CD for what I can offer to ANY aspiring ukulele player.
Now, to be honest, one thing that I'm not that great at is typing. Hence all the typos on the site and I never formally studied writing ( probably also self-evident ) – but hopefully getting better.
Just browsing over both books, they look fantastic! I'm a guitarist and uke player for over 25 years and was thinking about writing a ukulele book but you've already written what I think are the best, most comprehensive and thorough books I've ever seen for the instrument. I just might end up buying every book you've written, and I'll be giving my highest recommendation for your books to my friends and students. Thank you so much for taking the timefilezilla
to write such great books! — Peter Rhee
The Good News - initially the ukulele is a lot easier to learn than the guitar or most other fretted stringed instruments. You can get initial success pretty early one. Now the Bad News - there are no Tricks, Secrets or Shortcuts when learning any musical instrument and the ukulele is no different. To take it beyond the basic requires learning how things work in music and mastering the technique required for simply enjoying the ukulele.
Using my proven teaching methods All I can guarantee IS that you WILL learn and progress.
Jack Webb of Dragnet TV fame said if best, "Just The Facts, Ma'am."
The Tricks are just the tools and building on a core - solid foundation. The Secrets - well there are no secrets, it's how music works, and we work in relationship to music. And Shortcuts typically come back and bite you. Skip the tricks, secrets, and shortcuts, and you won't regret it down the road. My site does dispense a lot of tips I've discovered, researched and explored along the way to help with learning the ukulele. I can be your guide, coach, mentor, teacher for exploring the ukulele.
You won't have to:
Practice - you'll EXPLORE the ukulele and all its potential.
There are no Rules - just the PRINCIPLES of music and how it all works together.
Play - well you can call it play but it is a bit of WORK - but a lot of fun.
Your Fearless `Ukulele Leader
Curt Sheller - ( Me, myself and I ) is-are an independent, by choice, musician, graphic artist, music store owner, publishing company, web developer (these sites), etc... catering to the needs of ukulele players and musicians worldwide with the resources, expertise and information you need to develop as a musician.
Curt Sheller Publications was created by Curt Sheller (me) in 1995 and has been on the web since - over 20 years. I have over 50 plus years ( that sounds old ) of playing experience, and I have been involved in private music education for the past 30 years. I have performed and presented workshops at various ukulele festivals around the USA since 2004.
I'm one of those rare performers that can communicate what I do to a student in a detailed manner and customized to their needs. Like I said - I'll guarantee your progress as long as you do the work.
Back to the 'Ukulele
After a 20 plus year break from the 'ukulele - ( couldn't figure it out back then and no info around, let alone a finding a qualified teacher for 'ukulele ) - In 2003 I began taking advantage of my jazz guitar skills, training, teaching and performance experience and started pursuing and exploring the potential of the ukulele. Researching the field I saw very little material organized at a level that actually works for intermediate to advanced players – most of the beginner stuff is suspect as well. I have developed an international reputation as a ukulele expert having written 50+ books for ukulele and guitar. In my private teaching practice I typically have between 50 to 60 students a week of all levels depending on the season.
Checkout my ukulele CD, “How About More Uke?” - I've been planning and talking about this CD for a few years and finally have gotten around to getting it done.
“Press on: Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.” — Calvin Coolidge, The 30th. President [1923-1929]
“In an era, where when so many of the great Jazz Ukulele players have gone on to play in the angel band, Curt rightly steps up to be my personal favorite when it comes to jazz on the ukulele.
His musical knowledge is unending and his improvisational chops are #1. When the planets align and we're able to jam it's a real thrill.” — Lil' Rev
“The ukulele is a noble little instrument... anyone serious about music will eventually come to play one.” — Bob Brozman
“How long can you call something a fad before you just have to admit the thing is just here, it’s hit a steady state, and it’s just going to be around?” — James Hill
“Curt, I really enjoyed your set at The Whiskey--your low key intros, mic persona provided a cool contrast with your complex uke technique and ingenious arrangements!” — Jared Denhard
“Chords can not be named out of context. They can only be named in the context of a chord progression or chord sequence and then only when the chord's harmonic function within that progression can be determined.” — Curt Sheller (me)
“That's the single most sensible statement about music that I've read in months, maybe years. Thanks, Curt.” — John Kavanagh, The 4th Peg Parlor Room
“I wanted to pay you a compliment. (Now don't get a big head!). I have purchased many books over the past 15 years I have been playing and none of them come even close to having the detailed and easy to understand information yours have. I really got a chance to get some practicing in and am finding your books to be such a great learning tool. I also purchased a timer like you suggested and my practice sessions the past 4 days have been my best in years.” — Take care, Nick Matty
“Built LearningUkulele.com for myself, and sharing with the `Ukulele community!” - Curt
“Curt, your CD was fantastic. You are amongst the ukulele masters of our day.” John K.
Site Access Plans for LearningUkulele.com
Forever Access - With Forever Premium Access, you get ALL the benefits of a Premium Access Subscription such as Unlimited 24/7 access to ALL lessons, downloads, songs, play-along jam tracks, videos, email access to Curt, resources, related assets, and ALL books by Curt as FREE downloads. Pretty much everything on the site, and NEVER worry about a subscription or surprise payment again. And jump the queue for responding to any questions.
If you're anything like me (Curt) and getting Subscription overloaded with everything and everybody on-line wanting money from you once a month — I'm with you. For like-minded individuals, this forever plan is a pay once, and you're done.
The price for Unlimited Forever access is right around the cost of a few months of private lessons. I can guarantee there is more than enough material on-line to keep you busy for a long, long time. And, you get all of my books for FREE. That alone is more than the cost of this plan.
Premium Access - This premium gives you Unlimited 24/7 access to ALL lessons, downloads, songs, play-along jam tracks, videos, email access to Curt, resources and related assets. As well as ALL books by Curt Sheller as FREE downloads.
Basic Access - A limited selection of basic lessons — ( currently over 140 ) and 100+ songs for ukulele as well as basic general music reference material — Completely FREE — Simply Register/Signup. HOWEVER - I've been doing ukulele and LearningUkulele.com since 2003 and probably have given too much away already - as reflected in my income from the site in relationship to the time spent on the site. So help support this site and its continued development by signing up for one of the below Premium Access Plans or buy a few of my books. - Thanks, Curt
NOTE: Each higher access level includes ALL the benefits of the lower levels. Private Lessons include all the benefits of a Premium Access Plans as long as you remain a student on the schedule.
Just browsing over both books, they look fantastic! I'm a guitarist and uke player for over 25 years and was thinking about writing a ukulele book but you've already written what I think are the best, most comprehensive and thorough books I've ever seen for the instrument. I just might end up buying every book you've written and I'll be giving my highest recommendation for your books to my friends and students. Thank you so much for taking the time to write such great books! — Peter Rhee
Aloha, Curt, All I can say is WOW! What you have accomplished is simply incredible! All the best — Glen Hirabayashi, The Aloha Boys
Folks, if you haven't stopped by Curt's site, do so right now! ..And get his books, they are fantastic. This guy knows his stuff and is able to pass it along too. — Alan Johnson Proprietor, The 4th Peg
I can highly recommend Curt's Uke books — I have four of them and they are excellent. — fatveg — Portland
Thanks for visiting and checking out the site!
Original Curtie Animation from 1987 for my first web site on a Macintosh II.
34 years ago.
Man, does time fly.
“Built for myself (Curt), and sharing with the `Ukulele community!”
LearningUkulele.com has one of the largest collections of lessons, songs, and TABS, Luthiers, ukulele builders, ukulele festival and club information, and, ukulele links on the web. I’ve been on the ®Internet since the early 1990's and This site just never stops growing!!!
Content is added and updated almost daily - so check back often. I really do need to get out more ;-)