Happy New Year Fellow Flea Jumpers!

I do apologise for the seemingly long hiatus, but please rest assured you did not miss a Flea Fest in my absence.  We did not get together in January, but have every intention of doing so in February and will be returning to our old model of meeting at the home of any one who is willing and able to open their doors to us. And, graciously, our dear friend Lois has offered her home in Napa for our February gathering, Sunday, February 28, at 5 pm.  You will need to send me an email confirming you can come and I will send you the address.  Pupus are, as usual, welcome.  

Lil Rev is Coming to Town(s)  

Our good friends, the Petalukes, will be hosting Lil Rev  up in the North Bay on Wednesday, February 10, for a concert and workshop.  Those of you who made it out for Lil Rev’s concert last January can attest to what an absolutely delightful and versatile entertainer he is. And Rev has literally written the book (make that several excellent books) on how to play ‘ukulele.   You can attend the workshop (6:30 pm) and the concert (8:15pm) for the low price of $25.  What a screaming deal.  Everything happens at the Petaluma Community Center, 329 North McDowell Blvd., Petaluma.  For more information call (707) 778-4380  Check out the flier to learn more:  Lil Rev in Petaluma. Better yet, print some out and post them around town.

If you happen to live closer to Santa Cruz, you can actually catch Lil Rev this Thursday, Feb.4, at the Santa Cruz ‘Ukulele Club meeting at Bocci’s Cellar, a sight to behold!  Learn bawdy blues, naughty rags, comical numbers, Tin Pan Alley novelty tunes and their history, as well as novelty strokes such as the fan stroke, figure 8, and the zig zag stroke. The workshop runs from 4:30 to 6:00pm and is open to all  levels, for $20.00.   The concert begins at 7:00pm.  I beleive all you need to do is show-up.

 If that’s not enough, Lil’ Rev will also be conducting a 3-hour Ukulele Master Class, on Saturday, February 6th, from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm, geared for intermediate and advanced students: “Hot Licks For Ukulele.” This class will focus exclusively on riffs, licks, endings, turnarounds, fills and moveable licks for soprano, concert and tenor ukulele looking at Blues, Jazz, Country, Bluegrass and Folk-based licks. Students must already be playing basic single string melodies on the ukulele. Handouts will be in tablature and notation. This workshop will be held at a private home near the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor and is only $30.00.  To register for this master class workshop on Saturday, RSVP to andy@cruzio.com  Sounds like a field trip to me.

Speaking of the Petalukes, who are growing by leaps and bounds and have now spawned another group that meets up in Healdsburg, check out our Song Files  page for a few new tunes from this fun-loving group:  Ghost Chickens  (sung to the tune of “Ghost Riders in the Sky”) and Istanbul

I think that’s enough for now.  Those of you planning ahead might want to mark your calendars for September 11 & 12 for the third annual Wine Country ‘Ukulele Festival. Beringer has again, very graciously, offered to host the event with the luau happening again at Flora Springs on Saturday night. We have a few new tricks up our sleeve including ‘Ukulele Master Classes on Sunday,  ‘Ukulele Big Band with James Hill, and special Wine & Ukulele pairings in the caves at Beringer.  There will loads to do for players and non-players alike. So, if you’re coming in from out of town, it’s not too soon to start thinking about reservations. See you soon.