The Kilted Ukulele



They’re the two great passions in my life these days.

Fact: I get more tips when I busk in a kilt. Everyone’s seen someone busking in trousers, but how often do they see a guy in a kilt playing a ukulele? And a LEATHER kilt at that…

leather kilt ukulele skagway 2017

It seems everyone else is playing guitar. Everyone else is wearing pants. And I’m playing a ukulele. I’m wearing a kilt. Well, get over it. Get on with it. Get down, and boogie, and play that funky ukulele, white boy.

I can’t even play a straight ukulele. Sure, everyone knows the standard “reentrant” tuning for a ukulele, GCEA, just hum “My Dog Has Fleas,” but I choose a “progressive” tuning, gCEA, where the top string is an octave lower. It’s like playing just the top four strings of a guitar, capo’d at the fifth fret.

I don’t wear my kilt like I’m “supposed” to. I don’t play my ukulele like I’m “supposed” to. I get bored with the norm. I play Philip Glass and U2 and Rocky Horror on my uke. I don’t play Hawaiian music, “Tiptoe Through the Tulips,” or George Formby (too creepy and pervy).

So here’s to playing what you want and wearing what you want. Rock on. Uke on. Kilt on.



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