Mark has been researching stringed instruments on the internet for a couple of months now. Not violins and cellos. He's been stalking youtube videos of mandolins, lutes, dulcimers...
One evening I asked him why.
Turns out he was searching for an instrument he could play and enjoy. He had tried guitar, even took lessons a few years ago, but his fingers never toughened up enough for him to enjoy playing. The guitar has been gathering dust for some time now.
He researched video tutorials, samples of musicians, different brands of instruments, music available. He thought about mandolins long and hard, but eventually settled on...
Yup. We visited Guitar Center last week and he came home with his new love.
Now, what makes this really fun for me is that I have owned/played a ukulele since I was a teenager. I used to know lots of chords, remember a few of the basics, never got good at strumming. Now that Mark is learning to play the ukulele, we've been having some fun together with this. I had no idea there were so many tutorials on youtube! Mark is learning chords and I'm finally learning to strum. Mark is picking up (pun...sorry...) how to pick the notes for some songs, too. (Can you imagine "Ode to Joy" on a ukulele? It's true.)
We bought a very cool little tuning gizmo called a Snark when we bought Mark's ukulele. I thought maybe the salesman was just trying to get us to buy something, but it turns out he was right. The Snark makes it so quick and easy to get our ukes tuned up and ready to go.
We're currently working on "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." We'll make a little video for the grandkids as soon as we get it down, and I'll post it here for your listening pleasure.