One of our favorite things about the ukulele is how easy it is to go from picking it up for your first time to playing a song for your friends and family. There are many one-finger and two-fingers chords that are simple to learn on the ukulele but allow you to play dozens of songs.
There are a few things to remember when playing your first songs. While the left hand’s fingers are moving to make the chords on the frets, the right hand is strumming or stroking the strings to make the melody. When you are first beginning to play it might feel challenging to move both your fingers on your left hand and your stroke with your right hand as the same time. Don’t worry! This will become easier over time with practice.
Fortunately, you don’t have to execute a complicated strumming pattern with your right hand in order to sing and perform the song. You can just use repeated down strokes and focus on your left hand making the chords. When playing your first song, pick one you are familiar with so that you’re not struggling to find the tempo or the sing the words.
We’ve chosen five popular contemporary songs here that are our favorites at Uku Global. They’re very well known, but only consist of a few simple chords! The tabs below will show you where to place your fingers on the fretboard. Have fun experimenting with strumming patterns, speed (tempo), and your own interpretation!
It’s easy to find ukulele tabs for your own favorites. Using a search engine, type in the name and artist of the song you’re looking for followed by “ukulele tabs” and you’re on your way! Send us a video or tag us in your posts — we love to see how quick it is for beginners to be sharing their music on the ukulele.
Riptide by Vance Joy
Somewhere Over the Rainbow
Old Town Road by Lil Nas X
Wonderwall by Oasis
Despacito by Luis Fonsi