Pukes push boat out for free ukulele lessons on Regent’s Canal

PUBLISHED: 18:43 15 July 2013 | UPDATED: 18:43 15 July 2013

Pukes get ready for ukelele punk gig at Mile End

Pukes get ready for ukelele punk gig at Mile End

Diana More

A top Punk band pushed the boat out to stage a free concert on the Regent’s Canal and give free ukulele lessons for beginners.

Now there are a couple of dozen new ‘George Formbys’ running around East London after The Pukes taught the wannabe ukulele strummers at Mile End Park on Sunday.

“We showed them basic chords in just half-an-hour,” explained The Puke’s Clara Wiseman.

“They came away playing the ukulele and joining in with the Part Time Punks band, all leaving at the end very happy strumming their ukuleles.”

The Pukes, a 20-strong mainly-female group from east London, gave a Sunday afternoon of free music on the canal, with a narrow boat for a stage, playing to an audience of 300 gathered in the park in the sweltering heat, some dancing on the towpath keeping cool.

The collective was joined by Mark Hughes ukulele star at The George in Soho, Dogtown Rebels, Louise Distras—billed as the female Billy Bragg and fresh from Glastonbury—east London’s Punkture Sluts and punky children’s band Cake For Breakfast.

The Pukes, who recently released their debut EP on Damaged Goods Records, received funding from the Arts Council to run a series of ukulele workshops for children and adults. They repeat the ukulele gig at North Yorkshire’s Deer Shed Festival at the weekend and Blackpool’s Punk Rebellion Fest on August 10.

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