Well I can't believe it but I am already up to episode 14 of The Ukulele Sessions. The idea behind the ukulele sessions is to get the best players in the world to perform an exclusive piece, a bit like Radio 1 Live Lounge, only better - as it just features ukuleles ! In addition to that I am doing interviews with some of the worlds best players. When I started The Ukulele Sessions I wasn't sure how many people would be willing to give their time up to perform/be interviewed - but so far every single person (bar one who was sadly going through some personal issues) has agreed to appear. I have had some incredible players already - just take a look at the list below of who has performed :
Kimo Hussey, Sam Muir, Jim Beloff, Colin Tribe, Shawn Yacavone from Ukulele Friend, Tony Mizen, Matthew Quilliam, Laurence Diehl, Mark Witney, Julian Rodriguez, Mike Haysom, Choan Galvez.
It has been an absolute pleasure doing the series thus far and I have met some great people - some of whom I already knew or have performed with and some completely new to me. I have loved all of the episodes but I must say I found the one with Shawn from Ukulele Friend incredibly interesting. Shawn is an expert on the history of the ukulele and during the interview I did with him he had in front of him 3 of the first ever ukuleles - dating from 1890 ! Just to see these ukuleles was incredible but to hear Shawn discuss them with such knowledge was truly exceptional. All of the above people have been so generous with their time, for which I am very grateful. I have had some amazing feedback from viewers and it seems that people are getting a lot from the series.
I'm very excited about future episodes that we have coming up. Tomorrow we have an interview with the amazing Colin Tribe. We have some absolutely wonderful episodes in the pipeline including :
1) Matt Stead. A fantastic interview with Matt Stead of The Uke Room (he discusses his influences, his songwriting and previous bands, his shop, and all the amazing players he has be so instrumental in bringing to the UK to perform).
2) Elisabeth Pfeiffer. Elisabeth is an amazing talent from Germany and she plays an exclusive piece from her new book.
3) Roland Prakken. Another awesome talent from Germany Roland treats us to an exclusive Ragtime piece.
4) Jim Tranquada. Jim is the author of the amazing book 'The Ukulele - A History' and is the great grandson of Augusto Dias - one of the first ever ukulele makers. Jim has an amazing knowledge of Ukuleles and it a great person to interview.
5) Marius Antonin Fleck - a great exclusive performance.
If you haven't checked out The Ukulele Sessions yet please do - you will not regret it. In the meantime here is the episode featuring Shawn Yacavone which is so worth listening to.