By Gail Reynolds, Columnist-Tampa
“Reynolds Rap” Column
Venue: The Capitol Theatre–November 17, 2015
There probably is not a soul online who has not received a link to Jake Shimabukuro’s ukulele rendition of “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” with breathless urging to watch and be amazed. And 13 million viewers have been indeed amazed. Ukulele enthusiasts refer him simply as Jake.
Fans in the Tampa Bay area were treated to a spellbinding concert at the Capitol Theatre in Clearwater Tuesday, November 17. Jake performed favorites such as “Bohemian Rhapsody” and many hard-hitting rocking numbers. However, he varied the pace with soulful introspective tunes as well.
His familiarity with Japanese culture was evident in his inspiration for some of his compositions. For his “Sakura Sakura” he makes the humble four stringed instrument sound uncannily like a 13 string koto.
Just as Beethoven based his Fifth Symphony on a four note motif, Shimabukro created a masterpiece on classic G C E A, “My Dog Has Fleas,” tuning.
Accompanied by a bassist, Jake’s nearly two hour concert seemed over too soon. Bathed in tastefully effective blue, white and red lighting, he closed with Schubert’s “Ave Maria” as a tribute to the Paris terrorism victims.
Afterwards he was available to pose for pictures and sign CDs and even the vinyl pressing of his latest, Travels. Many brought their ukuleles for him to autograph.
If you missed him, there seems ample opportunity to see him, as his concert schedule is extensive, befitting someone of his youth and energy, matched by extraordinary talent.
Jake Shimabukuro – “Sakura Sakura”
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