Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A memorable night at Ukulele Mansion

Back in February 2009, I organized quite a birthday celebration for my buddy Rush Kress. Our most spectacular party to date in the Ukulele Salon series, some 80+ people, maybe half of them carrying ukes, gathered at Ukulele Mansion, which the NY Times has repeatedly described as one of New York City's most magnificent private home.

Furthermore, we had friends from the Made in Film-Land video production company organize a professional, multi-camera shoot of 20-plus performances from some of NY's best ukulele performers. Then my long-suffering wife, a film editor, spent many hours putting the clips together.

The results are posted as separate entries on this blog under the label ukulele mansion, or you can browse the complete list on my YouTube account (aka UkeTube).

First up is this clip of me (Rick Bruner) and alt.folk sensation Anna Dagmar singing "Someone to Watch Over Me." By way of context, I'm good at organizing fun things like this. I'm still so-so on the ukulele, far from the evening's best performance. I hope, however, I serve to encourage other budding players, as someone who was a non-musician three years ago before this lovely little instrument changed my life.

Anna, on the other hand, is a professional singer-songwriter, a terrific talent and a new good friend. See AnnaDagmar.com. We barely practiced, I flub a few chords and my nervousness is clear in my unsteady performance. But it's a tricky Lyle Ritz arrangement, I'm more or less on pitch, and I had a great time, so I'm happy to share the results with the rest of the Internet. :-)

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