Life Is A ‘Grand Ukulele’ For Jake Shimabukuro

The “first ukulele rock star” extends his journey, scheduling new shows on both coasts for his “Grand Ukulele Tour” plus plenty in between. Beginning in early 2013, Jake Shimabukuro and his four-string music machine will play locales ranging from Alaska to Louisiana.

Photo: Mike Oberg
Tower Theatre in Fresno, Calif.

That a ukulele maestro’s live performances are now in demand is probably something neither Shimabukuro nor his fans thought was possible a few years ago. But as a testament to his onstage persona, Shimabukuro comes across as a very friendly, down-to-earth musician who loves performing as much as his audiences love watching him play.

We found that for ourselves when Shimabukuro visited the Pollstar campus in late October. With a gig at Fresno’s Tower Theatre that very evening, the artist played a fantastic 20 minute set in our courtyard, all the time telling us about his own musical history and how he rose up the ladder to headlining status.

Shimabukuro still has some concerts scheduled for 2012 before he breaks for the holiday, playing venues in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York and Massachusetts.

Here’s Shimabukuro’s U.S. 2013 calendar as it stands so far:

Feb. 6 – Grants Pass, Ore., Rogue Theatre
Feb. 7 – Chimacum, Wash., Chimacum High School
Feb. 8 – Grants Pass, Ore., Rogue Theatre
Feb. 9 – Olympia, Wash., Capitol Theater
Feb. 10 – Anchorage, Alaska, Alaska Ctr. For The Performing Arts
Feb. 13 – Eureka, Calif., Arkley Center
Feb. 14 – Santa Cruz, Calif., Coconut Grove Ballroom
Feb. 15 – San Rafael, Calif., Marin Center
Feb. 21 – Agoura Hills, Calif., Canyon Club
Feb. 22 – Cerritos, Calif., Cerritos Center For The Perf. Arts
March 2 – Atlanta, Ga., Ferst Center For The Arts
March 19 – Clearwater, Fla., Capitol Theatre
March 20 – Jacksonville, Fla., Florida Theatre
March 21 – Athens, Tenn., Athens City Middle School
March 22 – Memphis, Tenn., Buckman Performing Arts Center
March 23 – Baton Rouge, La., Manship Theatre
April 20 – Buffalo, N.Y., Perf. Arts Center At Rockwell Hall
April 21 – Glenside, Pa., Keswick Theatre
April 24 – State College, Pa., State Theatre
April 25 – Wilmington, Del., Grand Opera House
April 26 – Princeton, N.J., McCarter Theatre
April 27 – Troy, N.Y., Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
June 7 – Greenville, S.C., Peace Center Concert Hall
June 8 – Durham, N.C., Carolina Theatre

Photo: Mike Oberg
Giving an improptu concert at Pollstar HQ, Fresno, Calif.

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