Did you know that every year we have one day to celebrate our favorite little four-stringed Hawaiian instruments? Find out more about National Ukulele Day in this handy guide!
This special day (also known as World Play Your Ukulele Day), was first observed in 2011 and bears the slogan “bring the world together, four strings at a time).
But what is this world ukulele day all about, and how do we actually celebrate it? Read on to find out!
National Ukulele Day 2024
When Is National Ukulele Day?
National Ukulele Day (also referred to as World Play Your Ukulele Day) is celebrated every year on February 2nd. So, for 2024, the event will occur on Friday, February 2nd.
How To Celebrate National Ukulele Day
The way that you choose to celebrate the big day is of course completely up to you. Here are a number of different ways that you can honor this awesome four stringed instrument.
1. Revive Your Love For Ukulele Music
Did you buy your first ukulele years ago with the full intention of mastering this versatile instrument? Did you then also find that life got in the way and your uke has barely left its case in years?
Well, if you are one of these people this is the perfect time to dust off your instrument and restart your journey to ukulele mastery! Why not check out my parts of the ukulele guide to help get yourself reacquainted with this popular musical instrument?
Hold yourself accountable by committing to some weekly lessons from a tutor, or perhaps set up a subscription to one of the many excellent online courses.
Help to keep your motivation high by following popular ukulele players on their social media channels. Having a daily reminder of what is possible on the little four stringed instrument will provide you will unlimited inspiration!
2. Help Inspire New Ukulele Players
A big reason to celebrate World Play Your Ukulele Day is to help promote the instrument, with the aim of hopefully exposing new people to the wonderful world of ukes.
The goal here is to expand the worldwide ukulele community by helping to nurture the next generation of Jake Shimabukuros and Israel Kamakawiwo?oles.
We can do this by organizing ukulele day festivals, workshops, and performances. These events will provide a platform where ukulele enthusiasts can come together to share their love of this instrument.
You can also host online events, tutorials, and challenges to help inspire people that would prefer to take part from the comfort of their own homes.
Load up on some great reasons to persuade people to take up the ukulele by reading my article on why the guitar is an amazing hobby. It is centered around guitar, but all of the benefits will still apply to ukes.
3. Level Up Your Own Playing!
As much as World Play Your Ukulele Day is about spreading the joys of the instrument to others, it is also a day for YOU! It is a reason to at long last put together a new band, record some fresh music, finally nail an impossible song, or even treat yourself to some new gear.
If you have a partner, family member, or acquaintance who plays ukulele, it could also be a nice idea to gift them a new piece of gear to help fire up their motivation.
One of my preferred methods to fire up my motivation is to log onto YouTube and watch live performances from my favorite players. Let the YouTube algorithm do its thing and head firmly down that rabbit hole.
Letting YouTube do its thing is a great way to expose yourself to new artists and genres. For example, you might start off on Hawaiian music but end up on a jazz music trip.
It can also be a great idea to remind yourself just how far you’ve come on your ukulele journey. Think back to when you picked up your first uke and how lost you felt, or the moment when you finally managed to get through an entire song for the first time.
4. Learn About The History Of Ukulele
You may be pretty good at playing the ukulele, but how much do you actually know about the rich history of the instrument? For example, were you aware that the first ukes were developed in the 1880s?
World Play Your Ukulele Day is the ideal occasion to delve a little deeper and learn more about these little instruments that we all love so dearly.
5. Learn To Play Ukulele
If you haven’t yet attempted to play the instrument, then this day is the ideal time to take up a new hobby! Some music stores give special offers and discounts on ukuleles during the event, so you could snag an excellent bargain to sweeten the deal.
Here are a few easy ukulele songs that you should be able to pick up very quickly.
- Hey Soul Sister – Train
- Somewhere Over The Rainbow – Judy Garland
- Tears In Heaven – Eric Clapton
- I’m Yours – Jason Mraz
- Riptide – Vance Joy
Join In On Social Media With #NationalUkuleleDay
If you spend more time browsing your social media feeds than actually playing the uke, then make sure to also join in the fun online. Use the hashtag #NationalUkuleleDay on your posts to help spread the word.
You can also use #UkuleleDay or #WorldUkuleleDay.
Tag your uke pictures, videos, and recordings to join in with other ukulele players from around the world. And if you don’t have anything to post, why not share this page or the handy graphic below to let as many people as possible know about this celebratory day?
National Ukulele Day Poster
Help to spread the word about World Play Your Ukulele Day using the handy poster below. If you’re feeling motivated, why not print out a few copies and post them around your town or office?
If you do share this poster on social media, please make sure to link back to this page so that your friends can find all of the information that they need!
You can find a larger A4-sized version of this graphic here if you would prefer to print out a copy.
World Play Your Ukulele Day Sales
If you happen to own or work in a music store then what better way could there be to help highlight this special day than by running a sale for one day only?
Perhaps you could offer a small discount on all ukuleles on February 2nd, or a special bundle with some extra goodies included. Failing that, another great idea would be to host a ukulele workshop to teach new players the basics when it comes to maintenance or lessons.
Fun Ukulele Facts
To finish off this article, check out this selection of interesting facts that you can use to impress your friends on World Play Your Ukulele Day.
- The ukulele is based on a Portuguese instrument that was adapted by Hawaiians in the 19th Century.
- The word ukulele translates as ‘jumping flea’. This is in reference to how fast the Hawaiians thought the fretting hand moved when watching Portuguese immigrants playing the instrument.
- The most expensive ukulele ever sold belonged previously to Burmese singer Kyar Pauk. This custom instrument was sold at a charity auction for roughly $27,500.
- The world’s largest playable ukulele is a whopping 13ft 1 inch long (3.99m). Enthusiast Lawrence Stump built it in the USA in 2017.
- The largest ukulele ensemble ever recorded consisted of 8,065 people who gathered in Hong Kong in 2017.
- The longest time spent continuously playing uke is 30 hours and 2 minutes. This record was set in London in 2016 by Robin Evans.
If you’re still hungry for more facts, check out 43 incredible facts about the guitar.
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