In January 2011, Peter Shebib and Dennis Murphy held the very first meeting for a ukulele group at the Robot Cafe in Port Dover. By June we named ourselves DUH: Dover Uke Heads.
Canadian singer/songwriter Fred Eaglesmith generously offered to allow the group to meet at his music store, Hobo Vintage Guitars and Music Store, located at the Robot Cafe on Main St. Port Dover, giving the group a home for two years. We would like to thank Fred for providing us with the use of his store space as his way of contributing to the community and supporting local musical artists. Now that we have grown so much as a group, we are bursting at the seams and have had to relocate to the Grace United Church on Chapman St. Port Dover. Many thanks to the staff of Robot Cafe and their patience and support of us: we have many fond memories!
Members of DUH range from many levels, from beginner to “well seasoned”. We welcome newcomers playing at any level and some ukuleles are available for purchase at the store. Usually there’s an extra uke kicking around for anyone who wants to drop in and visit or just “try it on.” There is a small group convened separately by Dennis, for those with little or no musical background starting at 6 pm. The main group usually sets up at about 6:30 in order to begin tuning by 6:45. We play from 7 til 9 and welcome any additional music, open mic, or listening ears. Newcomers should sign up on the email list to receive announcements and links to songs we are currently working on.
Performing: we found out that we greatly enjoy visiting the area retirement homes playing “fun and lively” songs. After taking part in the Port Dover Santa Claus Parade we are enjoying sharing the uke craze. We played “Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World” for a bride to walk down the isle to, acted as the “ukulele rhythm section” in a War of 1812 pageant parade, and played an hour of Classic Rock’n’Roll at a 60th birthday party. And through it all, one thing our group really exudes is happiness, and lots and lots of enthusiasm! And if, once in a while, we mess up a song, it’s “Duh!” because we don’t worry about being “too cute”.
Mission Statement: Our aim is to learn together as a group, support each other’s efforts, keep an open mind for the MANY different genres of music there are, and to respect others. Our mission is to provide a safe, non-competitive environment, regardless of players’ skill levels: negativity and disruptive behavior are not welcome here because our ultimate goal is to have fun with the joy of music. ♥