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Sunday, October 18, 2009

King Of The Road

When the weather turned cold and rainy, people crowded into the dining hall at Palmetto Cove RV Park to hear the Yesterukes. (An outdoor concert had been planned.) About 100 Airstreams gathered in the South Carolina mountains for the North Carolina/South Carolina Airstream Rally this weekend. We were invited to be the afternoon entertainment. This was our perfect audience--old enough to appreciate our music and young enough to be enthusiastic and sing along with us. For an hour we rocked the place with lots of favorite songs. And just for this group, we sang "Airstreams for sale or rent, rooms to let, fifty cents...." Our version of "King Of The Road."

After the program, people pushed to the front, money in hand, to get their own Yesterukes CD. That's the way we like to end a program. As we were packing up, someone was already playing our CD over the sound system. There is always a bit of a delay when we hear it unexpectedly, and then we realize, "Hey, that's us!" We'd like to think they'll be listening to us as they head home, singing along with the CD.

One lady told us afterward, "This was a delightful surprise." We hear that a lot. Evidently, folks have pretty low expectations when they hear the words, "ukulele band." Glad we surprise them in a good way. Someone else said, "I've only heard you on YouTube, but the videos don't do you justice. You guys are so much better in person. This was great!"

The best comment was from a relative of a band member. She said she often talks about interesting family things at work, so one day she mentioned having a cousin who had a senior citizen ukulele band. Her co-worker said, "You're making that one up, aren't you?" No, we're for real---a traveling band of gray-haired ukulele players. Sounds perfectly normal to us!

King Of The Road, Roger Miller, 1965

Find us on Facebook. Be a fan! A special treat for fan #100!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Rainy Days And Mondays

How could there not be a post on this rainy Monday? It was too hard to pass up using this song for our blog title today. It might be a long time before it rains like this on a Monday again. Days like this make us look forward to getting together soon. The Yesterukes started as a music group, but strong friendships have developed and probably are the most important thing for us now. These are the nicest folks you'll ever meet, brought together by the magic of the little ukulele.

We hit a new record last week. We booked a date for over a year from now! Crazy, isn't it? Ron, the whistler in our group, said a long time ago, "At our age, we don't even buy green bananas." With that in mind, the date is on our schedule (Nov. 2, 2010), but with a promise that they will check with us next summer to see if we are still kicking. But, boy, does it does make us feel wanted!

We need your help. Our fan page on Facebook is soooo close to having 100 friends. By many standards that isn't that many, but look at our group photo--we are not the prime generation using Facebook. But our children and grandchildren are of the "Facebook generation." So help us spread the word that it's easy to become a "fan" of the YesterUkes by going to YESTERUKES FAN PAGE. If you are not a Facebook user, you can still view the page by following the same link. Let your friends know that we have a fan page. You can just search for "Yesterukes" on Facebook if you don't remember the link. And there will be a little treat for Fan #100!

Rainy Days And Mondays, The Carpenters, 1971

Thursday, October 8, 2009

What's New

The Yesterukes have learned so many new things since our adventure started. We figured, why stop now? Our latest challenge is to try "playing by ear." It's one of those things, that's easy if you know how, but pretty hard if you've never done it. Every week someone chooses a three or four chord song to bring to the group and we see if we can play it. We've only been doing this for a few weeks, so sometimes it's a train wreck and sometimes we surprise ourselves, and it's pretty good. But it's always fun!

Our group is made up of both seasoned players and relative newcomers to the music world. So for some, this is very comfortable and for others, it's a stretch. Today's song is one of those "three chords and the truth" kind. Sit in with us as we try it to learn it. (We're only looking at the words. Honest.) Remember, it's a new song for us!

The youngest of our Yesterukes is out of commission for a while, after an encounter with one of those germ-y things that lurk in hospitals. This is also a video greeting to her from all of us. Get well!

What's New, by Bob Haggert, 1939

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Oh Happy Day

Here in the South, our weather can stay warm well into fall, but today there was just a hint of "cool" in the air. An absolutely gorgeous day. The Fall Festival at White Oak Estates was held today in their beautiful outdoor pavilion. People browsed through the handmade jewelry and pottery at the craft booths and admired the beautiful fall displays. More crafts were set up inside.

And then..oh my....there was the food. When we arrived, a huge stone grill was already fired up and loaded with hot dogs, chicken skewers, and corn. The smoke drifting through air was making us all hungry. There were four other food stations, filled with side dishes and "fixin's". You could satisfy your sweet tooth with a visit to the cotton candy lady or a stop at the freezer filled with ice cream treats. This event was like an advertisement for retirement.

The Yesterukes were in fine form as they entertained the lunch crowd for about an hour. Our typical audiences sit still and watch us as we play. But today people were free to enjoy lunch, wander through the booths, and visit with friends. It was like playing for a big party. So much fun. We loved it when one of the ladies came up and sang with us! Can you tell we had a really good time? Yes...yes, we did.

Oh Happy Day, recorded by the Edwin Hawkins Singers, 1967 gospel music arrangement of an 18th century hymn

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