If You Love Your Small Town…

by Dennis Peterson

05. December 2015 · Comments Off on If You Love Your Small Town… · Categories: Businesses, Loomis, Nighthawk, Okanagon, Omak, Oroville, Osoyoos, Riverside, Tonasket

If you like a smile with your music then seek out an ukulele player’s club to entertain you. If you’re patient one will find you! The Okanogan Ookoolele Club found the stage at Omak’s Art in the Park, Friday, and played to smiles on their little “jumping flea” instruments.

Okanogan Ookoolele Club with members of the Twisp Ukulele Club

Okanogan Ookoolele Club with members of the Twisp Ukulele Club

The club played several well-known tunes that got the happy audience to share their voices with the group, and several ukulele players from the Twisp area joined them on stage for the largest gathering of players in the history of the club. Spontaneously, the Randy Battle Bluz Band gathered at stage right to offer their harmonies, as well. The result as you may expect, produced even more smiles.

Randy Battle Bluz Band (left) Join Voices with the Ukulele Players

Randy Battle Bluz Band (left) Join Voices with the Ukulele Players

Ukulele clubs can be found in many communities around Washington state and even in the big cities. This easy to play instrument is great fun and offers an excellent opportunity for singer/players at home to get out and have some group fun. The residents of the Okanogan Valley need go no farther than Omak Music to find a wide range of instruments, and ukulele clubs are constantly seeking new members to share the fun with. Join the fun!

Photos and video by Nancy Peterson

Okanogan Friday Fun

by Dennis Peterson

Sometimes life just knocks on your door and you’re off to adventure and fun. In this case it came as an email and as happens when stars align, circumstances found me riding my Harley home in 5:30am morning chill from a Wenatchee sleep study lab but with a welcome diversion to the Omak hills. Singer/songwriter Erica Swanson asked me if I’d record a session of her singing a composition she had written and I just can’t say nope to something I like doing, so wife Nancy brought our audio gear from Oroville and we all met in a quiet home on a glacial bench west of the Okanogan River.

The accompanists were Randy Battle and Linda Pruitt of the Randy Battle Bluz Band. I soon had my mics in place and sound-checked, then the artists began collaborating on the music.

Brain storming the session

Brain storming the session – Photo by Nancy Peterson

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Ukanogan Music Scene

by Dennis Peterson

15. December 2014 · Comments Off on Ukanogan Music Scene · Categories: Music, Omak, Oroville, Tonasket

Ok – really bad pun* but…

Right here in Oroville, folks. An ukulele club formed this past year and after much practice they had a playing at the North Valley Nursing home in Tonasket. Familiar faces are already members and they’re seeking new members. More information can be found at their Facebook page.

The Ookoolele players will be playing at Esther Bricques Winery on December 18. This will be a caroling sing-along and all are encouraged to bring instruments and to play and sing along or just show up. Personally I would love to see everyone show up in an ugly Christmas sweater! How much fun would that be?

The Ookoolele players

The Ookoolele players

Quality instruments are available locally in Omak so you have no excuses! Omak Music not only has instruments, they have their own ukulele club so driving distance shouldn’t be a problem. No more excuses!!

If you would like a very nice custom ukulele made by a local luthier you might give Oroville’s Mark┬áKubiak a visit. His instruments are beautiful to see and play, and he’s begun work on ukuleles.

Click the pic and have a quick read about ukulele history at Wikipedia.

A beautiful Martin Uke

A beautiful Martin Uke

*Historical note: The earliest reference I’ve found to the name Ukanogan is from a 1906 newspaper article printed in a Portland, OR publication. http://oregonnews.uoregon.edu/lccn/sn83045782/1906-05-27/ed-1/seq-1/ocr.txt