Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Other than the tuning note of “my – dog – has – fleas”, there is no similarity between my ukulele playing as a youth and what Jake Shimabukuro produced on stage at the Kate Buchanan Room tonight. I didn’t know there was such thing as a “concert ukulele”. Jake is an ‘ook” virtuoso. Classical ukulele. It was a solo show – he performed with no accompanists and the audience was amazingly polite. Jake is adorable and shared anecdotes about a recent tour to Japan and background on the covers he does on his most recent album, many of which he performed. Covers of Zepplin AND Cindy Lauper?! On ukulele?! Very awesome indeed.

I’m not qualified to critique a performance but I do tend to critique the audiences of shows I attend. I’m one of those that hates when a performer rips it up on a section of a song and the audience applauds in appreciation … right over the top of the continuing song. Not this audience. You could hear a pin drop when he covered the Beatles’ “In My Life”, the title track on his new mini-CD, and George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps’. I’m never sure why people insist on bringing small children to shows like this. Even the best toddler gets bored and the most bestest whisperer whispers REAL LOUD. There are more appropriate places to teach small kids how to be a good audience…or do what we did, sit in the back and take them out the second they make noise. Before long, they figure out they miss stuff when they make noise.

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