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Placer Ukulele Festival

featuring Heidi Swedberg & Daniel Ward

Friday & Saturday, September 27 & 28, 2024

Eagles Hall & The Strum Shop on Vernon St., Roseville, CA

Proceeds Support Ukes For Schools


Join us for our 14th Annual Placer Ukulele Festival in Roseville, CA

featuring ukulele virtuosos Heidi Swedberg & Daniel Ward.

There will be Ukulele Workshops for beginning and intermediate players. Fun for all!


Everybody is welcome – come to strum, sing, and learn to play the ukulele.

Raffles and door prizes will add to the fun and excitement.

Lunch options are available with ticket purchase OR

choose from any number of local eateries on Vernon Street.

JUST ADDED! A FREE "Open Mic" will be offered at the Strum Shop on

Friday, Sept. 27 from 3:00 - 5:00 pm.  Sign ups begin at 2:30 pm.

Arrive early to secure a spot!

EARLY BIRD tickets available for a limited time.  Buy now and save!



The 2024 Placer Uke Fest offers numerous workshops for ALL levels and ages.  We have a great lineup of instructors offering their insights and sharing their fundamental techniques to make you a better ukulele player.  Whether you are just starting out or have been playing for a while, you'll find our workshops informational and fun!

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Sing Your Strings: Using Your Uke to Find Vocal Harmonies
(All Levels) (Daniel Ward & Heidi Swedberg)

Play and sing fun songs, including sea chanties, as you learn to use the strings of your instrument to guide your voice. Singing harmony is simpler than you may think. If you are a duo, in an ensemble or play with a group, this class will give you skills to explore and expand your musical experience.

Latin Montuno Fiesta! - Level 2/3
 (Daniel Ward)

The “Montuno” is a super fun Latin rhythm that cycles over and over, characterized by a happy syncopated arpeggio. It is found in Salsa music, but can also be plugged into any song or section of a song to give that special Latin feel that makes people jump up and dance.

In this workshop we will learn the Harry Bellafonte classic “Shake Senora” and use the song to implement the Montuno pattern. If you can already do any type of “Travis” folk picking, you will be ahead of the game picking this one up.

Lullabies From Around the World (All Levels) (Heidi Swedberg)

Meditative and soothing, lullabies are amongst the oldest musical forms- they are truly an essential worker.


In this class we will learn songs from around the world in a variety of keys and time signatures, with lyrics in many languages (and sing-able English language versions too!) Simple rhythmic ukulele accompaniments are within the grasp of beginning students as well as interesting to more advanced players.

What Strum Do I Use - Level 1/2
 (Steve Kritzer)


Now that I know most of the basic chords, what can I do with my right hand? How to find the basic beat of any song and add basic down up variations including simple Island and some basic mutes and "chucks".   

Introduction to Bluegrass Ukulele - Level 1/2 (Dr. Dennis

Most of us began our ukulele journey strumming, but fingerpicking on the ukulele opens a whole new way of accompanying a song as well as playing solos. If you know the C, Am, F,  D and G7 in standard tuning, you are on your way to learning this exciting new way of playing the ukulele.  It would also be good if you have some basic understanding of how to read ukulele tablature. But even if you don’t know how to read tablature, we will teach you the basics of reading it.


The picking pattern of the right hand will use thumb, index, and middle fingers in our playing. It would be desirable if you could do simple picking patterns already.


In this workshop, we will teach you how to retune your uke from a 1st string A down to a G in “slack key tuning.” From there we will teach you a simple picking pattern (forward reverse roll) which will help you learn your first bluegrass song, Will the Circle Be Unbroken. We will also examine Blackberry Blossom. Lots of fun!

Blues Ukulele Tips & Tricks - Level 1/2 (Carla Fontanilla)

Covers skills used in playing the blues such as slides, hammer-ons, pull-offs, bends, vibrato, chromatic note movements and chord progressions, rhythm variations and riffs.  Learn to play 12-bar blues with more soulful feeling and meaningful expression.

Boldly Going Up The Neck - Level 2/3 (Steve Kritzer)


Finding chord substitutions up the neck in 2nd and 3rd position to add to, and add "frosting" to any uke jam, with just enough theory to be able to find your own alternatives.

Intro to Chord Melody Ukulele- Level 2/3 (Dr. Dennis Fisher)

Chord melody is a style of playing ukulele where you strum the chords and pick the melody at the same time. Both Jake Shimabukuro and James Hill come to mind as masters who have brought so much attention to this way of playing the uke. How will we approach learning this style of playing? The short answer is “baby steps.”  Our technique will be tablature. Instead of reading notes on a scale we will look at strings and frets as applied to the ukulele. What we will discover is that the tablature will combine lovely chords which complement simple melody lines.


Already knowing how to read ukulele tablature will be a great help in this workshop. But even if you don’t know tablature, we will teach you the basics of reading it. If you know the C, Am, Dm, F, Em and G7 in standard tuning, you will be well prepared for the workshop.  


In this introduction to chord melody, we will learn to play the beautiful song Try to Remember.  This major song from the musical “The Fantastics” captures a nostalgic look at the cycles of love, pain and triumph that punctuate life. This remarkable song will touch your mind as well as your heart. Melodic style is a joy to play!

Rhythm & Blues and Neo-Soul - Level 2/3 (Carla Fontanilla)

Covers building on basic chord progressions, understanding and feeling the lead drum rhythm structure, simplifying chordal movements, using chord voicing variations of "sung" notes, and playing simple phrases between the chords.


What’s your level?

These ukulele workshop levels have been taken from a magazine article by Heidi Swedberg.

Level 1: Beginner

Welcome! You are a new uke player and have already played with others or taken a few lessons.

The beginning player is new to the uke (1-3 months), knows some basic, first position chords.

You are fluent with (at least) your C, F, and G7, can make chord changes easily as well as keep a beat.

Level 2: Intermediate

Now you’re a player, but chord diagrams over the words are still a must. Your job here is to master B-flat,

get some strums under your belt and grow into your instrument—this is when you truly learn how to practice.

​Level 3: Experienced Intermediate

You know a bunch of chords and are ready to use them. Challenge yourself with some exciting techniques,

and maybe venture further up the neck. Be proud of yourself, this is a fine plateau to reach. 

Our Instructors


Carla Fontanilla


Dennis Fisher


Steve Kritzer


John Sandoval


Heidi Swedberg


Daniel Ward



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