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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Video: Ukulele Lovers Swarm Castro Theatre By the Hundreds for Epic Strum-Off and 'Mighty Uke' Screening

Posted By on Tue, Sep 28, 2010 at 7:00 AM

click to enlarge Creatures of the ukulele cult in their natural habitat.
  • Creatures of the ukulele cult in their natural habitat.
This past Sunday, September 26, hundreds of ukulele devotees packed the Castro Theatre for a shot at breaking the world record with a mass strum-off. Their occasion? A screening of Mighty Uke, a new documentary on the history of the Hawaiian instrument and and the, uh, feverish love so many seem to have for the four-stringed thing. We went to check out Sunday's uke celebration and made a brief video about it with the help of SF Weekly video guru/producer Jason Jurgens.

It's worth noting that the ukulele has a local connection: it was first introduced to mainland America at the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco, and, as the new documentary shows, seeped into many corners of American life from there.

Subjects covered in our video: why people like these damn things so much, how you can really learn an instrument in two hours, and what the original winner of reality TV show Survivor wrote on another contestant's ukulele. Oh -- and whether Sunday's uke players broke the world record in S.F. or not. Check it out:

Follow us on Twitter @SFAllShookDown @iPORT and @SFWeekly

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Ian S. Port


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