Archive | January, 2017

The OUS Spirit of cooperation

I was thinking recently about the OUS project and how it has now been running for 14 months. During this time the original FB page has close to 2500 members, the main site has 39 artists with individual pages as well as a page for collaborations between artists. During this time I have met many wonderful artists, some of whom have become great friends!

What has really struck me is the enthusiasm from artists and the generosity of spirit in collaborations, interactions and advice. In a busy world its easy for people to become very self obsessed, so this kind of behaviour is rarer than you might imagine. We literally have an international movement of artists of all types and backgrounds interested in creating original ukulele based songs. There have been many fond memories so far in the first 14 months. On a daily basis the FB page has yielded some great moments of entertainment including “Mary’s moving on” by Alan Thornton, “The Mayor of Sad town by Mark Wojchick and Shirley’s “Beautifully Bonkers” song. The sheer diversity of material is amazing and I applaud all those folks who have taken the time to give support and encouragement to fellow artists.

We are generally a well behaved bunch, but its useful to keep the page focused on original songs and keep out the spammers.




All the way from Sin (Morris-Dorey)

UP was borne out of a casual conversation between two ex-band mates several years ago, around playing ukulele-based songs at open mics for fun. However, audience and venue reactions suggested it shouldn’t stop there and gigs at popular music pubs, long established folk clubs and festivals (Deerstock, Matlock Bath Music Festival, Y Not Festival, Winchester Ukulele Festival) have been bolstered by appearances at charity events (Kimberley Jam, Beeston Oxjam, Skipsea Ukulele & Folk Festival), and the main stage at the ‘Great Notts Show’ in Nottingham’s impressive Old Market Square and micro pubs no bigger, but equally as accommodating, as your granny’s front room.

Eddie Dorey (vocals, ukuleles, harmonica) and Rob Nicholls (vocals and ukuleles) have collaborated for over a decade, which accounts for their ability to play to each other’s strengths. UP has enabled the duo to re-imagine both originals and classic songs from their shared history, whilst returning to their individual musical wishlists for further inspiration.

The result is performance that showcases their distinctive but complimentary vocal styles & harmonies, with Eddie’s melodic soloing supported by Rob’s sympathetic and percussive rhythm stylings. James Dorey (u-bass) has recently joined the line-up adding powerful bottom end to the UP live sound. For more information and updates go to


Alison Benson

Alison is an up and coming singer songwriter from Liverpool. Inspired by the wonderful music of Simon and Garfunkel, her musical style is rooted in folk, with a love of the Beatles thrown in for good measure. Alison grew up playing the guitar and singing, but fell hook, line and sinker for the ukulele a few years ago, which brought with it the joy of songwriting and performing, paying at a variety of events and local festivals. She recently won the audience favourite award in the Liverpool Acoustic Songwriting Challenge with the song ‘Black Pearls (Unfinished Business)’