Thursday, March 18, 2010

Mar. 19: Jake Shimabukuro at the Napa Valley Opera House

Posted By on Thu, Mar 18, 2010 at 8:47 AM

And so it began . . . A 30-year-old Hawaiian native with a ukulele filmed himself sitting on a rock playing a virtuosic, flashy version of George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” posted it on YouTube, and the world watched in awe. “I never knew a ukulele could sound like that,” remarked just about everybody, and a career was born. With pioneering technique and dazzling arrangement skills, Jake Shimabukuro is the Art Tatum of the uke, keeping listener’s ears shifting gears to wild cheers while his four-stringed peers languish in arrears. He is the No. 1 reason why ukulele sales have experienced a ridiculously steep rise since 2006—the year of his viral-video phenomenon—with companies in both Brooklyn and California alike reporting 70 and 80 percent sales increases annually. Hear his interpretations of “Thriller,” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and, without a doubt, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” when Shimabukuro wows ’em on Friday, March 19, at the Napa Valley Opera House. 1030 Main St., Napa. 8pm. $30–$35. 707.226.7372.Gabe Meline
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