I wanted to keep it local tonight and talk about the Anchorage Folk Festival, which is a totally cool… (yea, let’s make that pun intended) folk music festival that happens in Anchorage for about ten days each year.
But no, that will just have to wait, because tonight I want to talk about Ukulele Russ. I will keep it local, though.
Not only do we share a namesake and a passion for the ukulele, but we’re also both Alaskans. I have to admit, though, he is more Alaskan than I am. He lives in a dry cabin in Fairbanks and I hail from Anchorage; Alaska’s major metropolis. Also, he’s a much better ukulele player… and probably funnier… and he has more hair… and he probably has more friends… but, I can rock the ellipses.
Ukulele Russ is refreshing to watch. He rocks on the uke, lays down multiple tracks (one of which might just be a uke bass) through a looper during performances, and throws a little humor in to boot. He’s got a slightly scratchy, bluesy voice that works great for his funk style. He does more than just play music on the ukulele, he entertains. Check out his Soundcloud page and enjoy the video embedded below. I think it will give you a good idea of the kind of energy he exudes.
One final admission: Alaskans we both may be, but I’ve yet to see a Ukulele Russ show. I won’t miss the next opportunity and neither should you.
Oh wait, one last thing… (I told you, king of the ellipses) regarding the folk festival: I’m pretty sure Ukulele Russ is not performing in the folk festival this year. And I’m thinking “What the hay?”.
update: Just found out via Ukulele Russ’s facebook page, that he will be playing in Anchorage this weekend, January 30. Guess I’ll have to put my money where my mouth is and go check out the show.