Van Halen Meets the Ukulele

Jake Shimabukuro melds rockin's sounds with classic strings.

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    Jake Shimabukuro and his rockin' ukulele will appear at the Grammy Museum on Wednesday, Feb. 20 and The Canyon in Agoura Hills on Thursday, Feb. 21.

    What's your favorite song to hear via a ukulele?

    It's a question that has a few prisms to it. Much associated with traditional Hawaiian music, even up to a half century ago, the instrument has gone through a number of renaissances, rediscoverings, and cameos in unusual and delightful tunes. Christmas carols, 1920s Tin Pan Alley-type tunes, comedic ditties, and folk-sweet singalongs all regularly incorporate its melodious, string-twangy sounds.

    Truly, how many instruments can lay claim to such breadth, as well as a proclivity for the offbeat? Brass? Percussion? 

    But music sensation -- a term not to be trotted out lightly -- Jake Shimabukuro is taking the guitar-esque icon to new places. New rocking places, we'll add; Van Halen and Queen are on his surprising repertoire.

    You can enjoy and potentially be surprised by said repertoire in person, when the internet favorite makes for Southern California. He'll be at the Grammy Museum on Wednesday, Feb. 20 and The Canyon in Agoura Hills on Thursday, Feb. 21.

    And, yep, we said "musical sensation" earlier. Here's how we'll qualify that: Mr. Shimabukuro's rendition of "Bohemian Rhapsody" certainly caught the eye and ear of the internet, to the tune of a million+ hits. 

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