FOR something that weighs just over a kilogram, the ukulele has an incredible power to bond people of all ages and musical abilities.
Just ask the "ukesters" from Uke Mullum, who gather on the last Thursday of every month at Mullumbimby Ex-Services Club to strum and sing.
"You know, the uke to me is in some ways the catalyst to togetherness and joy," said Stuart "Stukulele" Eadie, who recently hosted the group's second birthday with Miss Amber.
"As it is a manageable size, it becomes a nice 'comforter' and allows some very shy people the freedom of singing, just by holding onto it."
As with any musical instrument, Stukulele said becoming adept was "a process of repetition, some refer to as practice".
"I know a lot of tricks now like setting achievable goals and sharing bite-sized chunks of information so as not to crash the hard drive, so to speak," he said.
"The great thing about the uke is anyone who has never played an instrument has a good chance of learning a few chords and playing a song in next-to-no-time."
To help celebrate their second anniversary last week, Uke Mullum was joined by the Northern River Ukulele Orchestra, the Mana Aloha Hula Dancers, Paul Agar, Eric the Dog, and 'Elvis'.
Stukulele will also be celebrating his birthday at 6:30pm on Thursday August 8 at the Tumbulgum Tavern.
Uke players and lovers alike can come strum and sing a long with Miss Amber, special guest Fiona Knight and more with a songbook full of Stu's favourites available for download before the night at ukenight.com
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