Song Travels
9:38 am
Fri March 8, 2013

Jake Shimabukuro On 'Song Travels'

Originally published on Fri March 8, 2013 3:34 pm

Jake Shimabukuro has carried the sound of the ukulele from his home in Hawaii to the world's concert stages. He's shared the spotlight with both Bette Milder and Jimmy Buffett, and even played in front of the Queen of England.

Shimabukuro first attracted attention for a YouTube video of him covering George Harrison's "While My Guitar Gently Weeps." With his imagination and remarkable skill, Shimabukuro proves that the ukulele can handle any genre; in his hands, the "little guitar" sings everything from J.S. Bach to The Beatles.

His latest album, Grand Ukulele, shows off new sides of the musician and features a number of original songs and reinterpretations. In this episode of Song Travels, Shimabukuro plays his own compositions and joins host Michael Feinstein for a duet of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."

Subscribe to the Song Travels Express podcast.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit