Archive | October, 2018

Joe Man Murphy

Joe Man Murphy is an Irish born Folk and Roots singer-songwriter and artist.
With vibrant influences from Paul Simon, John Butler, David Gray and The Eagles, Joe Man’s music has evolved to become a unique blend of its own. Growing up in Ireland, living in three countries and working over 50 jobs his tales are as unique as his family history.

Joe Man has performed at music festivals throughout Australia, including the National Folk Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival, Tablelands Folk Festival and Majors Creek Festival amongst many others.

Joe Man Murphy is known to most as a singer, guitarist and songwriter of highly successful Australian band The Timbers. Their high energy music has allowed them to share the stage and many festival line ups with acts such as John Butler Trio, Ball Park Music, The Pierce Brothers, Xavier Rudd and The Beards to name a few.

Joe Man has been writing music for over twenty years. For Joe Man music is an addiction, a constant companion and a freedom that shows through his music.
Many of his songs are life experiences, personal, humorous and truthful. The lyrics of the songs are accompanied by his unique guitar ability crossing many styles and boundaries to the sound it has become today.

Joe Man’s third solo album Happy Days will be released in March 2018. The album features 10 tracks celebrating stories of his upbringing surrounded by a large family of characters living life outside the establishment.


What If No One Listens? by Mike Turner

Recently, a social media friend and fellow songwriter posted a general question: how important is it that anyone listens to the songs we write?

I’ve been reflecting on this a lot lately, and I can say this: I am compelled to write. Each of my songs tells a story about something that matters to me, be it an emotion like love or sorrow; or a human condition like poverty or homelessness; or an issue like the environment or the tragedy or violence; or the glory of God and our world; or even just having a bit of fun. I write because I want to express my thoughts on the subject matter. Because I have to. Because I can’t not write.

Certainly, I hope that my completed songs are heard – that someone actually listens, and connects with what I’ve said. That they hear the story I wanted to tell, feel the emotion I wanted to convey and evoke, are inspired to take action on issues that matter to us as people. That’s why, even though I’ve never felt compelled to perform, I have and do – live, and recording and posting to YouTube, my webpage, social media and elsewhere around the Web. Because I do hope that the connection might be made.

But, what if no one listens?

In thinking about it, I’ve come to realize that, even if there was never any chance anyone would ever hear my songs, I’d still be compelled to write them. For me, the drive to speak, to create, is the primary motivator. The hope that someone will listen, and hear, and respond, is surely there – but if that possibility did not exist, I’d still write.

Because I have to. Because I can’t observe and experience the world around us, and not comment upon what I see and feel and believe.

Because I can’t not write.


Holden Rivera

Holden Rivera is professional Ukuleleist / Instructor / Recording Artist in the North Bay Area. While enjoying the more traditional island sound of Ukulele, Holden is better known for his ability to bend genres while managing to make the Ukulele sound like anything but an Ukulele. Because of the heavy influence of world class non-ukulele players like Chris Thile (Mandolin), Julian Lage (Guitar) and Mateus Asato (Guitar) it isn’t uncommon to hear Holden fusing Bach with Radiohead, Radiohead with Bluegrass, Bluegrass with Gospel or Hawaiian, Ragtime, Jazz and or Hip Hop.


Michael Hensen

Here is the link to my recent single, It’s All Good! 🙂

It’s All Good was a single written for Myrtle Beach Downtown. It came about after meeting one of the local musicians at the oceanfront
after crashing his stage and playing a 45 minute set. Following my performance, a conversation about common influences like Sublime
led to Michael Francis saying I should write a beach oriented tune called It’s All Good. Shortly after, the song was released. I never did play
MB, but I still think about going back to perform the song for the town that never heard it! 🙂


Old Man´s Tale

Old Man´s Tale is a new finnish band started in summer 2017.
Bands unique sound is entirely build on ukuleles.
The songs drive from pop culture, history and some folklore as well.
Band started when Janne and Jarkko were working on a hole different project and asked Ilkka to come sing for them. Night at the studio quickly turned into a happy reunion because Janne and Ilkka haven´t seen each other in years.
Sometime in the evening Ilkka mentioned that he´s interested in ukulele and wanted to write some songs with Janne. Janne was also interested to write some music. Janne tried the ukulele for the first time in his life and was mesmerized by the instrument. This quickly gave some new ideas in the means of songwriting. Janne and Ilkka wrote few songs and wanted make a test recording in order to hear how the intstruments sounds like. They asked Jarkko to record it. It turned out to be “Odyssey of Alaska¨, our first single. Once we were rehearsing, Pasi came to visit and happened to hear our recording and was surprised about how good it sounded. Enough said, few day passed and Pasi had bought cajon and some percussions and was assembled percussions on “alaska”. We were sold and Pasi was “hired” as a drummer. In the meantime Jarkko ordered a bass ukulele. No drums without a bass. Old Man’s Tale was born.

Old Man´s tale is :

Ilkka Moilanen : Vocals , Tenor ukulele
Janne Hyvönen : Backing vocals, 8- string tenor ukulele
Jarkko Liukkonen : Bass ukulele
Pasi Moilanen : Cajon drums , percussions


MUMF 2019 – Breaking the mould for uke festivals

I have regularly lamented the fact that many events described as “ukulele festivals” are essentially the same acts playing the same sets often to the same audiences. The lack of new thinking has in my view resulted in a decline in some of these events and so its good news that MUMF is returning in 2019 and is an event that bucks the trend with new thinking and a great opportunity to see up close many great ukuleles from some excellent builders

Here’s some info from Helen Howlett who is the organiser of the event

Meet The Ukulele Makers Festival 2019 (MUMF) Friday 31 May to Sunday 2nd June.

See a varied collection of boutique ukulele. Try before you buy!
Gentle strumming or some dynamic jamming?
Join the open mic, sing/strum along and jam sessions or pre-book a slot for a solo, duo or band on the afternoon ‘no-mic acoustic stage’.

Workshops for all levels from beginners to intermediate and advanced. Also Song Writing, Gig Bag Making, Designing Painted Rosettes and a Guided Walk of the grounds at the venue: Plas Tan y Bwlch.
For this year we have commissioned Richard Durrant to write a piece, especially for the finale of the Meet the Ukulele Maker Festival 2019 Saturday evening concert. You can sign up to perform with him.
Also, watch Pete Howlett build a concert ukulele throughout the weekend to be won by a lucky ticket holder.
All this set in beautiful Snowdonia near Portmeirion, castles, beaches and narrow gauge railways.

See the website for more details and our Facebook Page: Meet The Ukulele Makers Festival 2019



A Recommended Ukulele Festival next month


The Isle of Wight’s second ukulele festival is coming up in November (9th to 11th).  We have a fabulous range of artists, from the more ‘traditional’ sounds of Pete Moss and Matthew Quilliam, through elements of classical music with Opera-lele and Danilo Vignola (amazing ukulele instrumentalist from Rome).  We’ll also have brilliant original music from Plastic Jeezus, a trio of ukulele and vocals, bass and drums; Simon Fernand’s blend of witty lyrics and lively tunes is truly not to be missed. 

A D Cooke’s a northern girl whose performance at our fringe event last time was so engaging we just had to have her back on our main-stage this year; we’re all going to be smiling and tapping toes when she does “her thing”!  We’re really fortunate that the Hedge Inspectors (Krabbers and Caroline) have stepped in at the last minute with more original songs, as well as running an unplugthewood open mic on Friday evening.  JC Grimshaw and Jukebox Jazz are some of our favourite local artists who do a wide range of jazz and similar classics; and we’re really looking forward to JC’s group, the Dance Preachers, who’ll be taking the lead at our post-mainstage ‘Dance the Night Away’ party.

We’ve still got a few spaces available on our fringe stage on Saturday morning, which will be running alongside the Saturday workshop programme, with another round of workshops and a WW1 commemoration event on Sunday morning.  New acts are invited to contact us if you’d be interested in performing.  There will also be loads of jamming, led on Friday by Martyn ‘Eek’ Cooper and the Yoko Mainwaring Experience.  We’re just putting the finishing touches to the festival songbook!

Workshops will cover all sorts of things, from vocal technique and harmony, flamenco instrumental ukulele, songwriting for all those budding original songsters, rock ‘n roll, plucking techniques…and even beginners hula dancing!

Based in Newport, all our venues are a short walk from the town centre, and it’s only a single bus ride from any of the island ferry terminals – and we’ve negotiated a fabulous discount on ferry tickets with Red Funnel.  Newport has a wide range of great cafes and restaurants, and some lovely local shops (plus the amazing shop at Quay Arts, our main venue), ideal for finding original and beautiful Christmas presents We still have weekend tickets available, and now have on sale a limited number of day and event tickets – you can find all the details on our website at, or contact us at