• Garstang Ukulele Group April 2018

    Garstang Ukulele Group April 2018

  • Garstang Arts Centre

    Garstang Arts Centre

  • Concert


  • Tenor


  • Baritone


  • U Bass

    U Bass

  • 4 Ukuleles and Teddy

    4 Ukuleles and Teddy

  • Kepple Lane Fun Day

    Kepple Lane Fun Day

  • Garstang Ukulele Group

    Garstang Ukulele Group

  • Ukulele Jukebox at our Xmas Party

    Ukulele Jukebox at our Xmas Party

  • GarFest 2017

    GarFest 2017

Santa's guide to buying a ukulele this Xmas

It is almost Christmas so it is time to get down to the shops, or online and buy ukuleles for all the people you love. Here’s some buying advice.

There are 4 main types of ukulele – soprano; concert; tenor and baritone. Most people start with a soprano which can cost as little as £25. At this price they usually sound much the same so it is safe to buy online, but check the reviews to make sure it will stay in tune.

But going this cheap may be a false economy as you will probably want to upgrade well before Easter. It is better to spend a bit more, about £40-50, and get something like a Makala Dolphin. That way it may be next Xmas before you are looking to upgrade – remember there’s no such thing as owning just one ukulele.

Concerts are a bit larger than a soprano and people with larger fingers may find that useful. The starting price is about £45, but you can go up to more than a thousand. It is worth visiting a music shop to hear and feel the instruments before choosing which to buy as you’ll probably find one you really love. Tenors are a bit larger again and have a slightly lower tone. Prices here will start at around £70.

If you are buying for someone who already plays the guitar, it may be worth considering a baritone ukulele. All other ukuleles, sopranos, concerts and tenors are tuned to GCEA whereas the baritone is tuned DGBE, the same as the top 4 strings of a guitar. This means the chord shapes are the same, making it easier to change instruments. As the name suggests it also has a lower tone and as with the tenors, their prices start at about £70.

While your loved ones will be thrilled to receive their first ukulele, they will be delighted if you also buy them a tuner. These are widely available for about £10.

There are some other variations you will come across when looking at ukuleles. While most ukuleles are acoustic, some have pickups fitted so they can be played through an amplifier which is ideal if you wish to perform as a soloist or in a small group. There are also solid body ukuleles that have to be played through an amplifier. Another variation is the banjolele, a ukulele with a banjo resonator and made famous by George Formby.

And finally, how are they going to learn? There are some great online materials and we have some good links to get them started on the Resources page of this website including electronic versions of our eight songbooks containing about 450 songs.

And on the 6th January, they can come and join us at the Garstang Arts Centre. We’re there every Sunday from 2-4 pm.

Garstang Ukulele Group's Gig List

January 13: CHAOS, Chipping Village Hall

January 18: Forton WI

February 1: Moor Park House

February 24: Arts Centre Cafe

March 5: Meadowbank Nursing Home

March 21: Galloway's

March 23: Sandbriggs

April 10: Tuesday Club, St Paul's Church

April 21: Longridge Hall and Lodge Care Home

May 19: Bleasedale Tower Open Gardens

June 1: Moor Park House garden party

June 8: Cornmill Nursing Home

June 22: Oaklands Cheshire Home, Garstang

June 23: Market House Food Festival, Garstang

July 7: Memorial Park, Fleetwood

July 14: Arts Centre Cafe

July 15: Garstang Ice Cream Festival

August 3: Golden Wedding party, Ashton and Lea Golf Club

August 4: Parbulele open mic

August 26: The Crown

September 16: Kepple Lane Park Fun Day

September 29: A Concert for Harvest, St John's, Calder Vale

October 3: Whitechapel & Inglewhite WI birthday

October 6: Garstang Library Fun Palace

October 12: Harvest Supper, St James, Shireshead

November 3: Ukes for Life, Burneside

November 24: Arts Centre Cafe

November 28: Galloway's, Churchtown

December 1: Arts Centre open mic

December 5: Longridge U3A

December 7: Garstang 3Ls

December 10: Garstang Victorian Festival, 6.00 pm

December 11: Parkinson's Disease Society, St Cuthberts, Fullwood, 7.00

December 12: Intact, Preston, 2.00

December 19: Bushell House, Goosnagh, 3.00

December 20: Bare & District WI, St Christopher's Hall, 8.00


January 18: Gt Eccleston WI, 8.30

January 19: Longridge & Dist NFU, Ferraris 9.00-11.00

February 23: Art's Centre cafe, 10.00-12.30

March 1: Torrisholme Rambling Club, Jubilee Hall, Torrisholme, evening

March 12: Goosnargh & Whittingham WI, Goosnargh Village Hall, 8.30-9.30

March 26: Longridge & District Lady Farmer's, Ferrari's Restaurant, tbc.

March 29: Regional WI party, Forton Village Hall, 7.45-8.30

April 29: Wesley's Cafe, 7.00

May 18: Bleasedale Tower open garden, 12.00-3.00

June 5: Elswick WI, Elswick Village Hall, 7.30-8.40

June 8: Art's Centre cafe, 10.00-12.30

July 21: Garstang Ice Cream Festival

November 23: Art's Centre cafe, 10.00-12.30

November 27 Cherestanc WI, St Thomas's Hall, 7.30

December 6: Garstang 3Ls, 2.00

December 9: Victorian Festival, 6.00-9.00

December 10:  Parkinson's Disease Society, 7.00

December 11: Grimsargh & District WI, 7.30

Strumalongs and Open Mic Events

Monthly Events:

1st Thursday, 8 pm. Tap 'n' Barrel, Wigan. Open mic hosted by Chonkinfeckle.

1st Friday, 7 pm. Ruskin's Bar, Kendal. Strumalong hosted by Bryce Street Strummers.

1st Sunday, 6-8 pm. Guild Ale House, Preston. Strumalong hosted by Preston Ukulele Strummers Society.

Last Sunday, 7.30-9.30. Crown Inn, Garstang. Strumalong hosted by Garstang Ukulele Group.

Visit the Garstang Ukulele Group on Facebook