UD#39 Chord Melody: Spanish Melody!

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Chord Melody: Spanish Melody! (UD#39)

from Ukulele in the Dark
w/ Guido Heistek

This newsletter I want to share with you an all-time favourite chord melody piece among my ukulele students. The song is called Spanish Melody. I learned it from a book called Hawaiian Ukulele, The Early Methods published by Centerbrook.

The song is a lovely lilting waltz. When I demo the song for my students they often say, “That sounds lovely, but difficult!” They are surprised to find that they are able to play it without too much trouble. One student commented, “This tune has a lot of bang for your buck!” I also do a variation of this tune on my SOLO UKULELE CD. It’s track 13.

Have a listen:

 

Learning SPANISH MELODY:

MELODY:
I usually get my students to listen to the melody (tune) of the song and then sing along with the melody to reinforce it. It is very important to get a good feel for the melody of a song before you set about learning the song. It becomes the backbone – the structure on which we can hang all the details of a piece. Here is a recording of me picking the melody of the song with a very quiet chord backing in the background. Please give it a listen a few times and sing along. It will really help you when you set out to learn the song on the uke.

 

CHORDS:
There are three chords in the song: C, F and G7. The chord progression goes like this:

*Please play 3 strums per chord.

C     C      C       C     G7    G7      C       C
C     C      C       C     G7    G7      C       C

F      F      C       C     G7    G7      C       C
F      F      C       C     G7    G7      C       C

Play it through on your own a few times. Then strum along with the chord melody version below. This will cement your feel of for the chord movement of the song which will help give meaning and memorability to the details we learn later. Here is the chord melody version. Please strum along:


OKAY! Let’s put it all together. I’ve made a little video showing you how.

My suggestion is that you do your best to learn the song without any printed music. It always seems to “stick” with my students longer if they learn it that way. Also, their playing seems to come from a much more natural and connected place.

Note: In the video I encourage you to sing the melody. You may find it helpful to learn to pick the melody on its’ own, before you try to play the whole arrangement. Have fun with this piece!

Here’s the video:

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QUESTION:

Here is a question that a student asked about this piece:

“Why do we use the inside pluck in Spanish Melody? Why don’t we just use the outside pluck through out.

Ponder that a while and check out the answer in video form below.

ALSO!

NOTE: You can find a tab version of SPANISH MELODY at the bottom of the page. PHEW!

Hope you enjoyed the piece. All for now. See you next time.

Best Guido

Answer to: Why do we use the “inside” pluck in this piece?

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