Pianosaurus were a 1980s New York toy instrument band. They self-released two live albums and also recorded a debut album, Groovy Neighborhood, for Rounder Records in 1986. There’s a second album but it was never released. I wonder if the tapes still exist because if they did they should release the album. Hell, I’d even release it. As far as I know there’s no ukuleles in it but hey, toy guitars, toy piano and toy drums – lets not get picky.
The Kuricorder Quartet are the modern day Beatles of the eccentric happy novelty instrument quartet world. I came across them on a compilation a few months ago and have found out they’ve done a ukulele album called, you guessed it, Ukulele Kuricorder. It reached number 6 in the Japanese charts when it was released in 2006. It looks excellent, however, the album’s forty odd quid in the UK which is a bit of a blow.
Oh well, here’s an excellent video about their recent trip to London, I particularly love busking in Regent’s park. Enjoy.
Whenever I start to lose faith in the world, normally after reading the comment pages on any newspaper on any article ever published, I no longer comfort myself by drinking pints of wine. No, instead I look for the weirdest and greatest japanese people playing ukulele on youtube. It was on one of these voyages that I discovered ultraman ukulele. Looking like Ferngully with ukes, it’s the artistic statement that James Cameron wish he had made.
While the internet has the ability to break my faith in mankind, it also has the power to heal it as well. Check out the video.
Ukulele Beatles is a japanese compilation from 2003. In the world of the internets I thought the days of my youth, where it was impossible to buy so many albums, was a thing of the past. Apparently not. You can buy it from Japan but Japanese sites rarely post to UK. Perhaps I’ve not searched enough yet. One of the things that has really spiked my interest was Kuricorder Quartet, an eccentric Japanese instrumental quartet. They have some other albums that are on iTunes and Spotify. I managed to find their version of I’ve Just Seen a Face, which is on the Ukulele Beatles compilation.
There’s also, a Ukulele Beatles Vol 2, a Lennon ukulele and a Studio Ghibli themed compilation but I dn’t want to get ahead of myself, I’d be happy with the Ukulele Beatles compilation to start with.
The Descendants, a film set in Hawaii, has just had its UK release. I’ve always been a big fan of Alexander Payne’s films and this has the added bonus of a slack-key soundtrack featuring lots of Gabby Pahinui. I know Pahinui’s music a little through Ry Cooder and it really is great. Hawaii has such a strong musical heritage and there’s a wealth of great music there so it’s great to see it featured in a film this way.
A great soundtrack, which I’ll be listening to spotify, and a great director, this has to be worth a trip to the cinema.