Philadelphia Ukulele Orchestra

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Exactly happened what I thought would happen. I went great guns on seeing shows and then the holidays happened and didn’t see a show for a month. Now some would argue that I could count the Abba Museum in Sweden as a show. There is a, allegedly, video out there of me singing “Dancing Queen” in a hologram with members of the band, but that is only alleged. In any case, I had a great holiday season, but not many shows. So, it felt right to get back on track on January 1 and start the second half of my 50 years of shows enjoying the Philadelphia Ukulele orchestra. I know, I know. Those who know me would have guessed that the first show of 2016 would have been the Mummers, and that would have been a good guess, since I was out and about, but the first show was, indeed, the Philadelphia Ukulele Orchestra.

The Kimmel Center has finally figured out how to use its wonderful space on Mummers Day by throwing open its doors, hosting free entertainment, making sure the bar is open, and most importantly, keeping those glorious, and clean, bathrooms open. If I spend my Mummers’ Day in Center City, as opposed to South Philly, then I always stop in. It was just an added bonus to enjoy the musical musings of ukuleles.

The Philadelphia Ukulele Orchestra is exactly what it sounds like- a band of ukuleles playing old timey and current covers of songs. There are 12 members of the band with folks from those Philly bands I like so much- John Train, The Donuts, Beretta 76, Bumsteads, etc. Their ages range from 25- 80 years old and their names are awesome! Vivian Vapors, Mortimer LaGrippe, Horace Dropsy, Elmer Moxie, to mention just a few. They dress in smoking jackets, the men wear fezzes while the women wear gloves and they have little bars in suitcases with their bourbon.   The description of their music to tout their latest CD, “an irony-free ukulele and vocal romp through the Great American Songbook, Senior Division. Hits from before you mother was born.” Seriously, what is not to love?

I had a chance to meet up with friends, sip a little Bourbon while enjoying the gentle sounds of ukes through the great halls of the Kimmel center. It was a great way to start 2016 and my second half of the year seeing 50 shows.IMG_5810

18 shows to go, 153 days left…


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