Despite being a very small musical instrument, the ukulele is surprisingly versatile! You can play everything from rock to reggae on a ukulele.
It is also a fun instrument to play and simple to learn. To help you improve your repertoire, here are a few fun songs to play on the ukulele.
Fun Ukulele Songs for Beginners
1. I’m Yours — Jason Mraz
Jason Mraz is an American singer songwriter who released the very popular track “I’m Yours” in 2008. This song has a very positive vibe, is easy to learn, and people love singing along to it.
This track is in 4/4 timing and uses four chords: C, G, Am, and F. The entire song is one progression: 1 bar of C, 1 bar of G, half a bar of Am, and half a bar of F. Simple and fun to play. Check out this video tutorial.
2. Riptide by Vance Joy
Vance Joy burst onto the music scene in 2013 with the hit song Riptide. It is a beautiful track that features the ukulele prominently. Vance Joy often uses a ukulele during his performances and has said he enjoys writing music on the ukulele.
This track is also in 4/4 timing and uses four easy ukulele chords: Am, G, C and F. The vast majority of the entire song only uses Am, G and C.
The into and verse are very simple to remember. Repeatedly play 1 bar of Am, 1 bar of G and 2 bars of C. There is also a simple riff played later in the song and F is briefly played after the chorus. Check out this video tutorial.
3. Rainbow Connection by Kermit The Frog
This song is slightly more challenging to learn compared to our first two songs because it has more than four chords! However, it is definitely worth learning this beautiful track. You will be surprised by how many adults know the words to this song and start singing along in a Kermit voice.
The verse chords are A, F#m, D, E7 for 4 bars, then A, F#m, D x 2. This leads into the chorus of Dmaj7 and D6 x 2, C#m7 then Bm7, E7, C#m7, F#7. The song, then goes back into the verse. There is also a bridge section consisting of E7, F#m, A, D, A, E7, E7#5.
While these chords look complicated at first glance, the fingerings are simple. Check out this video tutorial.
4. Hey Jude by The Beatles
Many songs by The Beatles transfer to the Ukulele very well. That’s because most Beatles tracks have beautiful melodies and memorable chord progressions. Hey Jude is a particularly fun track because of the outro section where everyone sings along.
Hey Jude uses the following chords: D, A, A7, D7, G, G/F#, Em7, and C/E. As you learn more simple uke songs by Beatles, you will find many of these chords regularly popping up.
The verse is D, A, A7, D, then G, D, A7, D. The chorus section uses G, G/F#m, Em7 then A7, D, D7. The song also has a short interlude feature D, D7, A7. Finally, we get to the best part — the outro, which repeats D, C/E, G. It is a classic song that is a lot of fun to play! Check out this video tutorial.
5. Somebody That I Used To Know — Goyte
In 2011, Australian artist Goyte released Somebody That I Used To Know. It is a simple song with an extremely catchy melody. So that catchy that the track quickly went on to become a multi-platinum hit! It is a quirky song that almost has a reggae feel to it. It works very well on ukulele and it is very fun to play.
This song uses three chords: Dm, C, and Bb. The intro and verse follow the simple pattern of Dm, C, Dm, C. The chorus is Dm, C, Bb, C. You can either whistle the melody or have another player accompany you. Check out this video tutorial.
6. No Woman No Cry — Bob Marley
Reggae songs always sound great when played on the ukulele. This Bob Marley track has a beautiful chord progression and people love to sing along to it.
The entire song uses only four chords: C, G, Am, and F. The intro/chorus of the song are C, G, Am, F, then C, F, C, G. The verse repeats C, G, Am, F. Check out this video tutorial.
7. Happy — Pharrell Williams
It was hard to avoid this song when it was released in 2013, because it was everywhere! It is an upbeat track that puts everyone who hears it in a great mood. Children are particularly fond of this song, which makes it a great track to pull out for the kids to dance to.
It’s a very easy song to play. The verses simply stay on the E7 chord. You can play E7, A, B, A for the final four bars of each verse to add a bit of a variation. The chorus is C, Bm7, and E7 x 2. Check out this video tutorial.
8. I won’t back down — Tom Petty
This is one of the most popular songs written by Tom Petty. It is easy to play on the ukulele and a great track to play at a party.
The verse repeats Em, D, G twice, then Em, D, C once, before going back to Em, D, G. The chorus consists of (C, D) x 3 then back to the verse pattern of Em, D, G. Easy top play and a lot of fun!
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