Instructor – Liz DeBarros

Saturday January 12th – 10.30am to noon

This is the second of my ukulele workshop series to be held at Ground Zero Acoustic Lounge in Parksville.

This workshop will show you how chords are made and explain the mystery of chord progressions.

We will look at all the Major chords and why there are many variations within each chord. Minor chords and how they fit in to a chord progression.

Chord “inversions” (don’t worry, it’s not that technical) and see how you can make chords up and down the neck.

Movable chords and transposing or changing the key of a song. How to use a capo.

I’ll also be showing you how to anticipate chord changes and position your fingers for quicker and more accurate changes.

This workshop is also suitable for Baritone ukulele players.

The cost is $30 and tickets are available through GZAL website


Absolute Beginner Group Lessons in Parksville

Four one-hour lessons 11am to noon on Wednesdays at The MAC in Parksville

Wednesday January 16th to February 6th 2019

If you have ever thought about playing the ukulele but never even held one; or have been strumming for a while but would like to learn how to pick a tune, this four-week course will guide you through those skills

The cost is $70 and includes the course book “You Can Play Today”. If you don’t have your own ukulele, you can pre-order a good quality beginner package of ukulele, bag, tuner and strap from me for $120.

For more information or to register, email or call 250-586-5803.

I am a Level 2 JHUI Certified Ukulele Teacher; play in the local band Revolving Doors and teach workshops and group lessons at the MAC and GZAL in Parksville.

Strumming Patterns Workshop – Saturday November 24th 2018

Would you like to improve your strumming?

Liz DeBarros, a Level 3 JHUI Ukulele Teacher, will be giving a Strumming workshop at the Ground Zero Acoustic Lounge (GZAL) in Parksville on Saturday November 24th, 10.30am to noon.

The workshop will cover strumming techniques – thumb strum, finger single, double and triple strums

The difference between beat and rhythm and how to choose which strumming pattern to use in each song you play

Strumming exercises using a variety of songs in different timings – 4/4; 3/4; 6/8 etc.

Move on from the single, down strum and enhance your Sing & Strum experience.

Cost of the workshop is $30. The workshop is suitable for Beginners who have a little experience, Intermediate upwards.

Limited to 20 students

Register through the GZAL website link below; scroll down to the Strumming workshop.

If you have any questions, please email Liz at 

No refunds for cancellations after Nov 17th 2018

Uke Orchestra in Qualicum Beach

There’s a Ukulele orchestra starting up at the Seniors Centre in Qualicum Beach – see details below

5 Five-week Ukulele Sessions: Melody, Harmony & Chords and Strum & Sing

Can you read and play treble clef notes and a few chords on the ukulele?  Join other friendly and supportive players for one or more fun sessions!                 Wednesdays 2:30 – 3:30 pm 2018/19.                                                                    

  1. September 19 to October 24. Jazz and Pop Standards.  Ensemble Tunes: 45 minutes: Melody, Harmony, and Chords.  Fly Me to the Moon and Moondance. Strum & Sing: 15 minutes. Group favorites.
  2. November 14 to December 12. Christmas and Seasonal. Ensemble Tunes, 45 minutes: Melody, Harmony, and Chords. The First Noel, O Christmas Tree, Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire and (Alvin!!) The Chipmunk Song.  Strum & Sing: 15 minutes. Group favorites.
  3. January 16 to February 13. Jazz Love Standards. Ensemble Tunes, 45 minutes: Melody, Harmony, and Chords. It Had to Be You and The Way You Look Tonight.   Strum & Sing: 15 minutes. Group favorites.
  4. April 3 to May 1. Early Music. Ensemble Tunes, 45 minutes: Melody, Harmony, and Chords. Scarborough Fair, Greensleaves and Suo Gan Strum & Sing: 15 minutes. Group favorites.
  5. May 22 to June 19. Jazz Standards and Beach/Summertime Tunes. Ensemble Tunes, 45 minutes: Melody, Harmony, and Chords. Summertime and Oye Como Va. Strum & Sing: 15 minutes. Group favorites.

For session details contact Cathy @ 250-594-2260 or

Ukulele lessons for beginners to advance contact Liz

Beginner Group Ukulele Lessons

A new four session series of Absolute Beginner group ukulele lessons with Liz DeBarros is starting at the Ground Zero Acoustic Lounge (GZAL) on Monday September 17th at 7pm. All the details are on their website .

Liz is also excited to announce a series of six ukulele workshops to be given at  GZAL over the course of seven months, starting with “Strumming Patterns” on Saturday November 24th, 10.30am to noon. Again, all the details are on the GZAL website, keep scrolling down the page to see all the workshops on offer. You can register and pay for the workshops through the GZAL website.

Liz DeBarros Level 2 JHUI Certified Ukulele Teacher

Another “Great Little Festival” event this year

Wow! Didn’t we all have a great time this year with Cynthia Kinnunen, Kim Bjerga, Clark Holmes, and Andrew Nufer of the Naked Waiters  and Bill Naylor, Ade Barnum, Dean Williams and Liz DeBarros of the Revolving Doors. 

The workshops were well attended and we received very positive feedback from the participants. The Saturday night concert was a hit with stellar performances by Cynthia and The Naked Waiters. It was truly a wooo hooo time.

Sunday afternoon was a blast with several performances kicked off by Katelyn & Mira, followed by several excellent open mic players. Then the concert with the Revolving Doors proved to be a big hit again this year. The sing and strum, led by the Revolving Doors showed that 100+ ukesters and friends always do have a great time when we all get together. All the performers and organizers, Liz, Melissa and Carol got up on stage to close the festival with a rousing rendition of Hey Jude. 

And, I think I can say, that a great time was had by all.

We will be posting pictures and comments that we receive on the blog. I will also be putting up information about where you can get involved with groups in your community if you play the uke and want to connect with others.

We’d love to hear your feedback and any comments. Please get in touch.

Carol, Liz and Melissa


After the festival was over, Melody and Russ offered to take the Naked Waiters, Kim, Clark and Andy, on a sailing trip off the shores of Nanaimo. Here is the video that Melody took during their three hour tour.


The countdown to the 2018 Nanaimo Ukulele Festival

Well, we only have four days to go before the festivities begin. We are so excited to bring Vancouver Island ukesters another fantastic festival full of fun, frivolity and ukulele fever this coming weekend at the Nanaimo Ukulele Festival. 

Bringing you Cynthia Kinnunen from Guelph, Ontario, a highly skilled and masterful teacher of the ukulele. There are still a few spots open in her Ookestra workshop so it’s not to late to join in on a fantastic and fun festival experience.

Words from one of Cynthia’s students: “Right from the first lesson, Cynthia taught me a lot, from strumming techniques, to tricks of the instrument.  Cynthia is a fantastic teacher, and she brings such a passion for music to her teaching. When she plays, you can tell that Cynthia loves what she does, and that is crucial in a teacher. If you’re young and just starting out in the music world, or if you have a few years in your sails and want to bring a little uke into your life, I recommend contacting Cynthia. I can’t wait until my next lesson!”  – Emma B.

I can hardly wait to experience the musical talent and ability of the boys in the Naked Waiters group. They characterize themselves with their “impressive ukulele playing, nice hair and handsome harmonies that set the mood for any event.” The “Waiters” are also gaining an impressive resume of bookings at international ukulele festivals.

Don’t wait too long to pick up your concert tickets for the Saturday evening performance.

Parksville’s own Revolving Doors along with Mira and Katelynn and local open mic performers will bring local ukulele spirit to finish off the Festival on Sunday afternoon. Lets fill the Neighbourhood Church with great music and a rousing jamboree of ukulele playing and singing like the world is watching. Come on down for a whole lot of fun. Come even if you don’t play the ukulele (yet). 

Hope to see you all there. Bring a friend.

D’Addario Ukulele Hub

D’Addario, one of our Festival supporters, has some fun info on their website that might help you find your ukulele personality and propel you off in a surprising direction in your ukulele playing journey. Click on the image below to find out your ukulele playing personality.

Find Your Ukulele Personality