Southdowns Ukulele Festival

Southdowns Ukulele Festival 2024

The Southdowns Ukulele Festival is now entering its 6th year, starting in 2018 as a new segment of the already established Southdowns Folk Festival. This Free festival for Ukulele Players and the public, became a great success and has grown in popularity each year.
It is held in a large marquee (which can accommodate 200 people) on the Place St Maur on the Bognor Regis sea front.

It has, over the last 6 years, been able to book many of the top performers on the ukulele circuit and has provided the opportunity
for many local Ukulele Jamming Groups to perform to the public. There are also Open Mic sessions and several Free Workshops for
absolute beginners and experienced ukulele players.

The Mission of this Festival is to be “Free to All” so totally relies on funding from Local Authorities, Businesses, Fund Raising Events and Public Donations. The Festival organisers hope you will come and enjoy this fantastic event this year which will feature debut performances from the fabulous Sam Brown (with support from one of her ukulele clubs) and offbeat musical cabaret singer Tricity Vogue, plus returning performers and great supporters of the festival, The Hedge Inspectors.

Please see the Ukulele Festival Programme for timings and more details.

the hedge inspectors


Southdowns Ukulele Festival 2024 Workshops


A: Saturday 21st September (9.15 to 10.15)
Beginners - Richard Hales – Ukulele/Music Marquee, Place St Maur
We have been very lucky to get Richard to run classes for beginners at the Southdowns Ukulele Festival over the last few years. Many of these ‘beginners’ have gone on to join their local ukulele clubs and continue to play and have fun with the ukulele.
Ukuleles available to borrow.

B: Saturday 21st September (10.00 to 11.00)
Chord Variations – Jon Wheeler – RAFA Club, Waterloo Square
Jon has been playing, teaching and working in the grassroots music scene in Sussex for many years. He’s a full time, self-taught musician and tutor who’s enjoys passing on his skills and experiences. Here’s your chance to add another string to your bow, well maybe just a few more options on your existing 4 strings!

Tired of the same old chord shapes and sounds? In this workshop you’ll get a few new alternative chord tricks to try out, plus a better understanding of how chords work, so you can create some of your own!

C: Sunday 22nd September (10.00 to 11.00)
Song Writing – Tricity Vogue – Ukulele/Music Marquee, Place St Maur
Write and perform a song with Tricity Vogue.
Write an original song in an hour with cabaret performer and singer-songwriter Tricity Vogue. Together the group will choose a topic and song style, write lyrics, and come up with a melody, chords and arrangement. The group will then join Tricity on stage to perform the song together to other festival-goers before the final jam. Along the way, Tricity will throw light on her own songwriting shortcuts, and reveal that crafting an original song can be a lot easier and quicker than you thought it would be.

D: Sunday 22nd September (10.00 to 11.11)
Strumming Styles – Jon Wheeler – RAFA Club, Waterloo Square
Jon again with more useful tips gained from his teaching and performance background.

Up your strumming game with some new simple patterns. Learn how to think about and use different strum patterns in songs, and take your playing to the next level.


Sam Brown & Friends


Sam Brown is a musician, songwriter, performer and recently, ukulele teacher. Born in October 1964, Sam has been ‘doing’ music from the age of 12. She has worked as a backing vocalist, song writer and lead vocalist and has sold in excess of 3 million records. In the 1980/90’s she had her biggest hit 'Stop'.
As a lead and backing vocalist she has worked with the great and the good, past and present, including; David Gilmour, Dionne Warwick, Elton John, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Joe Brown, Joe Cocker, Jools Holland, Pink Floyd, Spandau Ballet, Steve Marriot to name but a few!
Sam currently teaches ukulele in Oxfordshire, Dorset, London and Australia and leads several ukulele clubs. The Umbrella name for all the uke clubs is The Fabulous Ukulele Club.


Tricity Vogue


Ukulele-wielding "master showgirl" Tricity Vogue has been a sparkling light on the cabaret and ukulele scene for over a decade, charming audiences nationwide with her trademark wit, quirk and sauce. Performing solo and with her All Girl Swing Band, the London Cabaret Award nominee has also made her mark across Europe, with festival performances in Belgium, Ireland, Italy, Czech Republic and Gibraltar.
She even ran away with the French circus in 2014!
Tricity has five hit Edinburgh Fringe Festival shows under her belt, and her nine-piece band regularly play prestigious venues including London's Royal Festival Hall and Wilton's Music Hall.


Pebble Beach Band


The Pebble Beach Band aim to provide you with a wide range of songs to suit any occasion, with the emphasis on fun and entertainment. They have all retired from full time employment so spend their time doing things that they enjoy, like singing and learning to play their instruments. They mostly play ukuleles but also include other instruments to complement the music. They also host ukulele workshops and jams at the Waverley public house in their home town of Bognor Regis, where everyone is welcome.


The Hedge Inspectors


the hedge inspectors

The Hedge Inspectors, Mike and Caroline Hayllor, are an acoustic duo based in Hampshire who play original songs and unique covers on ukulele and bass guitar. Their songs move from the sublime to the ridiculous and back again, with subjects derived from 'true' situations and the human condition.
Hosts of the award -winning 'unplugthewood' jam and open-mic , they thrive on audience participation, so expect to be singing along with them.

south downs ukelele festival

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