When you hear a song for the first time, it can be magical. You start asking yourself questions like, “How did they do that?” and “What are those chords?”
Songs can often sound more complicated than they are.
When I began learning how to play pop piano (and especially guitar) I was astonished to find out that once you mastered a few basics, most songs came easily.
If you can master six chords in every key, you can play almost any pop song. It sounds crazy, but it’s true.
Of course, playing a song and mastering the song are two different things.
10 Best Songs for Learning English. Wake me up- Avicci. With plenty of repetition and a whole load of metaphors for more advanced learners to get to grips with, Avicci's 'Wake me up' is a simple and effective tune to help you practise your English over the summer. How to Use Simple German Songs in the Classroom. There are many ways to introduce these songs into the classroom. Whatever task you choose, be sure that students understand all directions before playing the song, and then consider allowing it to play a second (or even third) time. My grand daughter loves this DVD also. Super Simple Songs are wonderful songs for my grand daughter that is 16 months old. She enjoys watching these before nap time. It helps her relax. These are learning songs and they are not long, only about 30 sec to a minute or two. Just enough for her tension span.
A professionally trained pianist will sound better than a beginner, even if they are playing the same, easy song.
This is a matter of training, practice and experience.
The only way for you to reach that level is to start playing!
I’ve compiled a list of 21 easy songs to play on the piano – including a few standards that everyone should know, and a few songs that are a bit out of left-field.
But first, if it's your aim to do music professionally, you'll want to check out our free ebook while it's still available:
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“Drops Of Jupiter” – Train
This is a great song to learn, because the more you play it, the closer you’ll get to sounding just like the recording.
The thing about this song (like many songs) is that it sounds harder than it is, because of the rhythmic patterns. This takes time and practice. The chords themselves are not hard to learn.
The general idea of the song can be captured in just four chords. The beginning is just:
C, G, F
And the chorus has a Dm.
The thing that makes the song sounds poppy and cool, is that instead of a standard F, you’re supposed to play a Fsus2 chord.
It might sound complicated but it’s not. An F chord is made up of three notes: F, A and C. The same goes for the Fsus2 chord, which is F, G and C.
It makes the chord sound “crunchy” and “poppy”.
For a slow, easy tutorial, check out the video posted above.
“Elastic Heart” – Sia
This song by Sia is a banger. It’s also the same four chords throughout.
The original key is A Major. And, the chords in this song are: D, A, E, F#m.
For an easy breakdown of how to play the chords along with the melody of the song, check out the video I’ve posted above.
Try experimenting with different inversions of the chords – both for effect and to make the song easier to play.
If you struggle with playing the black notes, you can change the key to C.
If the song were in C, the chords would be F, C, G and Am. Simple!
“Imagine” – John Lennon
“Imagine” is a classic beginner piano song – it’s John Lennon’s most enduring hit from his solo years, and people love to learn it because it’s simple and impressive sounding.
The video breakdown gives you a simplified version of the song – which is great to begin with.
You get the general feel of all the chords, as well as some of the essential licks that make the song so recognizable.
It also teaches you the melody, which is very satisfying, because it’s such a popular melody.
The verse is just C and F with a little passing note to G in there – the chorus gets a little more complicated, but the video does a good job of simplifying it.
Most people are so familiar with this one that it practically plays itself!
“The Scientist” – Coldplay
Coldplay is another great source of easy piano songs that are recognizable and sound impressive.
This song is very popular with beginner piano students for its easy melody and beautiful chord progression.
The general chord progression in this song is: Dm, Bb, F, Fsus2.
Again, the sus2 chord just means you take the third of the chord and lower it to the next scale degree.
So, on the F chord, it goes from F, A, C to F, G, C. Again, this creates a bit of tension, a bit of crunch, that sounds poppy and pleasing to the ears.
Try playing along with the recorded version of this one! It’s a slow song as it is, so it’s not hard to get your fingers around.
“Yellow” – Coldplay
Here’s another really simple Coldplay song that everyone knows.
This song is in B, which can be a challenging key for some new students, because of all the black keys. But there are only two parts to the song, and they only use three chords each.
The verses are simply: B, F#, E.
The choruses are: E, G#m, F#.
The parts in between the verse and chorus just go back to the verse chords, and add a pulsing right hand feel.
“Can’t Stop the Feeling” – Justin Timberlake
Oh dang, I love this song. I used to play it with a wedding band, and it was always fun.
While the verses and chorus are exceptionally easy, the pre-chorus is funky.
The chorus and verses are just: C, Am, F, Am.
Over and over again.
The video shows you this, but doesn’t show you the fun bass rhythm you could be doing with your left hand. Listen to the recording, and try to imitate what the bass does!
The pre-chorus does some weird chord movement, which looks strange, but is a fairly common move in R&B based pop music. It goes like this:
Bb, C, Bb, C, Eb, Bb, Eb.
It kind of takes it out of the key of C briefly. Cool!
“Stand By Me” – Ben E. King
“Stand by Me” is another classic beginner song. A simple, repetitive bass line, and a super recognizable melody – doesn’t get any better than that!
The main chords in this tune are always:
C, Am, F, G.
Over and over again.
What makes the song so recognizable is the bass line. Check out the video – it’ll show you how to play the bass line and the melody together. Feel free to add in chords as you get better!
“Stay With Me” – Sam Smith
The best part about learning “Stay with Me” is that you’ll also learn “I Won’t Back Down” by Tom Petty at the same time… I kid. But the songs are remarkably similar!
The chords to the verse are: Amin, F, C.
The chords in the chorus are the same, but you can add a G on top of the Amin chord to create an Am7 chord. Just a little color!
There’s also what’s called a passing chord. There’s a quick little E major chord that pushes you into the last part of the chorus.
The video does a good job of showing this.
“Somebody That I Used To Know” – Gotye
This song is a great beginner song – it’s almost childlike melody is easy to wrap your head around, and the chords just repeat over and over again.
The chords for almost the entire song are just Dm and C.
No kidding – it’s that easy.
The chorus alters that slightly, and goes: Dm, C, Bb, C, Dm.
This is a fun one to accompany a voice on, because you can play big octaves with your left hand, and simple chords with your right hand – making a very effective accompaniment.
“Pumped Up Kicks” – Foster the People
This is another one I used to play in a wedding band.
I think it’s great for beginners, because it gives your left hand a workout, but remains the same throughout. Never changing.
The video will show you how to play the bass line.
The chords for the whole song are just Dm, F, C and G.
The hard part is getting the left hand to do the bass line while your right hand plays the melody/chords.
Once you get it, it’s a blast!
“Seven Nation Army” – The White Stripes
As soon as I thought about “Pumped Up Kicks”, this song also came to mind.
“Seven Nation Army” is a fun song because it has a repeating bass line that thumps through the majority of the song, save for a few power chords that rock through the chorus.
The most fun way to learn this song would be to get the basics down by watching the video, and then playing along to The White Stripes recording.
The recording rocks, and it’s a lot more fun to play along to Jack White singing.
“Lean On Me” – Bill Withers
This guide would be incomplete if I didn’t tell you to learn “Lean On Me” by Bill Withers.
The easiest and best parts of the song are the verses.
This song is a common beginner piano song, because it literally has almost every chord from a major key in it, and they move in a “stepwise” fashion, making it easy to get your head around.
The bridge is a little funky, but funky is fun!
The video I’ve attached shows you how to play the exact piano parts that are on the original recording of the song.
If you want more of a piano version (with the melody in the right hand), check out this version:
Some combinations of both of these would make a great piano cover!
“Desperado” – Eagles
This was the first ever pop song I learned on piano.
It’s not as easy as some of the other songs on this list, but it’s beautiful. I watched this YouTuber’s full lesson, and he does a thorough job of explaining the song.
The chords aren’t that hard, but there are a lot of 7 chords in this song.
The video lesson has both a piano visualization as well as the sheet music above the piano.
The man explaining the song play it slowly and makes it sound lovely.
“Take Me To Church” – Hozier
This is a fun on one, because the recording is piano heavy – giant thumping pop piano throughout.
The chords aren’t hard, but the progression is kind of long.
The general idea is this:
Em, Am, Em, Am
There are few variations, going to G, and then to D and C.
The chorus is a whole other thing, with big crashing low notes.
Again, this one is fun to play along with, because the piano performance on the track is great.
“She Will Be Loved” – Maroon 5
Who remembers this classic? It’s a great pop song!
It’s also relatively easy to learn.
Most of the song revolves around Cm and Bb.
The chorus goes to:
Eb, Bb, Cm, Ab.
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Pretty straightforward. The video just shows single notes in the left hand, but because there are so few chords, you should try adding in the chords.
“Just The Way You Are” – Bruno Mars
This tune is perfect for serenading your crush.
It’s in the key of F.
The main chords are F, Dm, Bb, F.
It doesn’t deviate far from that, and the melody (especially in the chorus) is easy to wrap your head around.
“I’m Yours” – Jason Mraz
This is an easy guitar song, but it’s equally uncomplicated on piano and it can sound great to boot.
This song can even be played on many smaller child friendly keyboards.
The above video has an alternating left hand feel in the chorus that sounds great.
The entire song is just:
B, F#, G#m, E.
Unfortunately, the song being in B makes the melody a little hard to play, because of how many sharps and flats there are in the key of B.
If you want to change the key to C, the chords become:
C, G, Am, F.
“Mamma Mia” – ABBA
This one is so fun to play. The melody is unusual and super catchy.
The song is centred around D, G and A.
Classic Swedish pop song – all about the melody, and keeping the chords simple.
The chorus has a walk down part that might throw you off, but once you get it, it’s a lot of fun!
“Beat It” – Michael Jackson
Everyone should know how to play the guitar line to “Beat It”. It should be a law. The melody is also super fun and catchy.
The tune is very E Minor pentatonic, making it a lot of fun to play along with the recording.
Maybe if you’re feeling adventurous you could try learning Eddie Van Halen’s guitar solo but that’s not for the faint of heart.
“Someone Like You” – Adele
Adele is another great source of piano songs, because so many of her songs are piano based.
This satisfying tune is in F# minor.
It has an arpeggiating bass line that can be a bit tricky to get your hand around, but if that’s something you’re wanting to work on anyways, then you should give it a try.
“Hey Jude” – The Beatles
This list would be remiss without some Beatles. They have some particularly legendary piano anthems.
This tutorial is half an hour long but will teach you how to play “Hey Jude” like the original recording.
The video creator is a great teacher and has a great way of explaining the song, so that even a total beginner can learn the authentic piano arrangement.
“Birds” – Imagine Dragons
As with many Imagine Dragons songs, “Birds” relies heavily on production. But who knew it could be turned into a beautiful piano ballad?
Watch out for those rapid notes in the right hand. That's likely to be the hardest part of the song.
Also note the movement in the left hand. Some of it is relatively easy but there are some slightly tricky parts too.
“Dancing Queen” – ABBA
“Dancing Queen” is one of Swedish pop group ABBA's most recognizable numbers.
You'll be playing double stops in the left hand for most of the song.
The right hand has some quick movement, so if you're having trouble with it, be sure to slow it down and practice until you get the hang of it.
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This simple arrangement sounds great, so have some fun with it!
“Beautiful People” – Ed Sheeran (feat. Khalid)
Here's a fun song to play.
The left hand part is incredibly easy. That's good news, because the melody (right hand) changes rather quickly.
Again, the piano arrangement sounds awesome. You should learn to play this one for your friends (if they like Ed Sheeran), as they are sure to be impressed!
“Feel Good Inc.” – Gorillaz
The bass line in this song is boss. That alone makes it worth learning.
When the left hand is doing more, the right hand is doing less and vice versa. So, that can make it an easier song to learn.
Note that you will be playing some triads in the right hand but they aren't too hard. So, don't be intimidated!
“Wow” – Post Malone
The left hand part in this song is quite easy. Your right hand will get a bit of a workout, though.
Still, if you like Post Malone, I have no doubt you'll have a lot of fun learning it.
So, if you don't mind learning a slightly more complex melody part, you should give this one a try.
“Always Remember Us This Way” – Lady Gaga
Who can forget Lady Gaga's “Always Remember Us This Way”?
The left hand basically pounds out a steady beat while your right hand plays a melody with a decent amount of movement.
There are quite a few double stops in the left hand but this shouldn't pose too much of a challenge. Have fun with it.
“Don't Worry Be Happy” – Bobby McFerrin
This is one of those songs that easily gets stuck in your head.
This arrangement is nice and easy but it's important to note that there is a fair bit of moving around with the right hand.
If you're having trouble with it, be sure to work on each hand independently before bringing them together.
“You Raise Me Up” – Josh Groban
This ballad is through and through easy to play. Even if you're an absolute beginner, you should be able to pick it up with ease.
You'll only be playing one note per hand throughout the entire song, which is a huge advantage.
If the tempo is too slow, you could experiment as you see fit.
“7 rings” – Ariana Grande
Although the notes are a little bit spread out for your right hand, for the most part, this is an easy song to play.
And, the left hand part is fairly consistent throughout, so that shouldn't give you too much trouble.
Just keep working on that melody and you should be good to go.
“Stayin' Alive” – Bee Gees
Who wouldn't want to learn this classic disco hit?
Now, I will caution you that there is quite a bit of movement in the melody right off the bat and throughout. But if you can get the hang of that, the rest of the song is relatively easy.
If you're having trouble, just slow it down until you get it all under your fingers.
“Seven Nation Army” – The White Stripes
Who says you can't learn rock songs on the piano? Well, this is more of a post blues punk song, but let's not get caught up in the details.
It should go without saying the bass line is a lot of fun to play.
The melody might sound intimidating at first, but it shouldn't take you too long to get the hang of it.
“In The End” – Linkin Park
One of Linkin Park's most iconic songs is surprisingly easy to play.
In this arrangement, you won't be playing more than two notes simultaneously in one hand.
The melody gets a little more complicated in the chorus, but if you keep working at it, you should be able to pull it off.
“Better” – Khalid
This song starts off with a few triads. But they've split up the chords into two hands, so that shouldn't pose a challenge.
The bass line is steady and easy. The melody is where the interest is and it may take a little more work.
But I think the arrangement is great and it's worth trying.
“bury a friend” – Billie Eilish
There are a few things that make this song an easy one to play.
First, the left hand rhythm remains more or less constant throughout.
Second, it's a slow song. So, that's always nice when you're first getting started.
Third, you'll mostly just be playing one note at a time in each hand, though there are some double stops for your right hand.
The melody in the right hand isn't too bad either, but you will likely be spending more time on this than other parts.
“Highway to Hell” – AC/DC
Who doesn't want to play a little classic rock on the piano?
Now, this is a slowed down version of the uptempo original but that doesn't mean you can't work your way up to tempo with practice.
The trickiest part is going to be the power chords in your left hand. Once you get a hang of that, the rest should be an easy climb.
“Mission Impossible Theme”
Spy themes are a lot of fun to play and there are few spy themes more recognizable than the classic “Mission Impossible Theme”.
This song has been spoofed in a variety of movies, so even if you haven't heard the original, there's a good chance you've heard something like it.
Getting the left hand rhythm down while playing the right hand melody can be a little tricky. So, you may want to work on each of them independelty before putting them together.
That will be the case with most songs, mind you.
Easy Piano Songs Conclusion (& Where To Get Easy Guitar Songs)
I hope you find these songs useful and get up and running with playing them asap.
All are playable on piano, good digital pianos and decent keyboards for adults or kids.
If you also fancy them, we've got some easy guitar songs here too.
P.S. Remember though, none of what you've learned will matter if you don't know how to get your music out there and earn from it. Want to learn how to do that? Then get our free ‘5 Steps To Profitable Youtube Music Career' ebook emailed directly to you!
The ukulele is an incredibly popular instrument and thanks to its simple design (just four strings) it’s one of the easiest instruments to learn.
From its beautiful exotic tone to its cute, miniature size, the uke is loved by ukulele players and audiences around the globe.
In this article, we list our favorite easy ukulele songs.
You can play them on anytype of ukulele, regardless of whether it’s a tiny soprano or a large tenor, as they all share the same tuning. That is, all except for the baritone uke, which is tuned to DGBE.
So what counts as an easy ukulele song? Well, to make it a bit fun, we’ll say each song:
- has to use a combination of only the major C, F, G, and A minor chords
- can’t have any barre chords (as they can be tricky to play)
- doesn’t need a capo (you probably don’t have one if you’re just starting out)
- doesn’t require any knowledge of ukulele tabs
If you’ve just started learning the ukulele, you’ll find in this list some incredibly good songs to start with that are suitable for your level (in other words, they’re very low difficulty – we all want to be able to play Somewhere Over the Rainbow, but one step at a time!). We’ve even included songs with as few as two chords.
We chose a combination of songs from different genres too, including pop music, country, rock, and reggae, so whatever your taste, you’ll find something of interest.
So, without further ado, let’s get to it.
Table of Contents
- The 4 Basic Ukulele Chords You Need to Learn (C, G, Am, F)
- Our Pick of the Best Ukulele Songs For Beginners
The 4 Basic Ukulele Chords You Need to Learn (C, G, Am, F)
Before we get to the songs, learn (or reacquaint yourself) with these four basic uke chords. Note, you’ll first need to tune your uke to the notes GCEA (note: the letters refer to ukulele string names).
C Major Chord
The first of the four ukulele chords is the C Major. The good news is that playing a C on the uke is unbelievably easy (you literally play one note, and the rest are open strings).
To play it, simply put your ring finger on the third fret of the first string (using this finger will help when transitioning to other chords). Note: you can use your index finger to play it, but using your ring finger will help with moving to other chords as we’re about to find out.
A Minor Chord
The A minor is another simple, one-note chord (we told you the uke is a simple instrument!). Play the A Minor by placing your middle finger on the fourth string, second fret.
F Major Chord
Ok, now for a two-note chord (it’s still mind-numbingly simple though). To find the F Major, fret an A Minor chord (see above) but also add your index finger to the third string.
G Major Chord
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And finally, a three-note chord. It’s the most complicated of the four chords, but if you play guitar it’s easy as pie to get your head around, as it’s the same as the D shape. Even if you don’t play guitar, the G Major isn’t a hard chord to use. Note: we know many songs include the G7 chord, but for the sake of KISS (keep it simple, stupid!) we’ve left those songs out.
Now you know each chord, it’s time to check out our list of the best ukulele songs for beginners. Remember, there is more to music than just chords. Each song has its own particular strumming pattern and chord progression, so pay attention to that too.
Our Pick of the Best Ukulele Songs For Beginners
So now to our favorite ukulele strum-alongs for the beginner, in no particular order. We’ve included the chords for each song, plus a video tutorial that shows you how to play it. Take special notice of the strumming pattern for each song, as that really makes a difference.
Dreams: Fleetwood Mac
Chords: F, G
We’re going to start off with a song that has just two chords, Dreams by Fleetwood Mac. Just cycle from the F and G chords and that’s the entire song! Make sure to mix up the rhythm a bit to keep the song sounding interesting.
Counting Stars – One Republic
Chords: Am, C, G, F
A modern pop classic, this one works great on the ukulele. It follows a very simple chord progression that puts it within reach of most beginners. The original version is in the key of C#m, so if you want to play along you’ll have to put a capo at the fourth fret.
Octopus’s Garden – The Beatles
Chords: C, F, Am, G
Whether it’s the nautical theme of the song that gels with the Hawaiian roots of the ukulele, or simply the song’s buoyant, fun theme, The Beatles’ Octopus’s Garden (with Ringo Starr on vocals) is one of the best beginner ukulele songs out there.
Stand by Me – Ben E King
Chords: C, Am, F, G
This easy ukulele song is another timeless classic. It has one of those chord progressions that just plays itself. It has a very distinct rhythm so try and emulate that as closely as you can. It’s a fan favorite though if you get it sounding right.
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – U2
Chords: C, G, F
For a bit of 80s nostalgia, you can’t beat a bit of U2, and in particular this tune. If you play this at a campfire it’s pretty much guaranteed a produce a singalong.
Photograph – Ed Sheeran
Chords: C, Am, G, F
Fancy an Ed Sheeran song? Well, interesting enough his track Photograph works really well on the uke. This ukulele song sounds great and is pretty low on the difficulty scale.
Riptide – Vance Joy
Chords: Am, G, C
Riptide is one of the ukulele’s most popular current songs at present. Interestingly, it was actually written and performed on the uke (as opposed to most others that are written on guitar or piano and later transposed to the uke).
Ho Hey – Lumineers
Chords: C, F, G, Am
Indie folk provides a lot of songs that are perfect for ukulele, and this one is a prime example. With its shouts and stomps, it’s a perfect number to play at a ho-down (well, one assumes it would be, I’ve never actually been to one).
Sweet Home Alabama – Lynyrd Skynard
Chords: C, F, G, Am
Groan. I know, I know, this song manages to get on just about every list of songs that’s ever been published on the internet! But trust me, in this case, it really does deserve a place on this list. It’s stupidly simple to play, and it sounds great on the uke. Besides, how often do you hear this number played on a uke…it’s always on an acoustic guitar, right.
Hey Soul Sister – Train
Chords: C, G, Am, F
Here’s a song that was actually recorded using a ukulele, rather than transposed afterward. Train’s famous ukulele single Hey, Soul Sister off their Save Me, San Francisco album has become a bit of a ‘must-know’ ukulele pop song classic. It’s even credited for the resurgence of the ukulele’s popularity in recent years.
Rude – Magic
Chords: F, G, C, Am
Reggae songs sound great on the ukulele, and Rude by the Canadian band Magic is one such example. It’s a poppy reggae tune that’s a delight to play!
All Along the Watchtower – Bob Dylan
Chords: Am, G, F
This classic Dylan number, popularised by Hendrix, All Along the Watchtower is a superb one to play on the ukulele. Its chord progression is pleasing to the ear, and it’s relatively easy to sing too.
Just the Way You Are – Bruno Mars
Chords: C, Am, F
Back to the world of pop, Just the Way You Are by hitmaker Bruno Mars is another superb beginner number to get your fingers acquainted with. With just three chords, it’s amazingly simple to play.
She Will Be Loved – Maroon Five
Chords: Verses: Am, G, A, G / Chorus: C, G, Am, G
Maroon Five make unbelievably catchy songs, and this one is right up there with their catchiest of all time. If you can sing it as well as in the video below, you’re doing a great job (wonderful, isn’t she)
Let It Be – The Beatles
Chords: Verses: C, G, Am, F / Chorus: Am, C, F, C, C, G, F, C
One of the most played songs not just of The Beatles but of any song, this ukulele version of Let it Be is simply sublime.
I’m Yours – Jason Mraz
Chords: C, G, Am, F
I’m Yours was written for ukulele, and it actually pretty hard to play the original. It can be simplified though by transposing to the key of G, check it out.
Whistle – Flo Rida
Chords: Am, F, C, G
Out of all the ukulele songs on this list, Whistle by American rapper Flo Rida is one of the most bizarre as you wouldn’t normally associate the cute ukulele with rap! But man does it work!
Hallelujah – Leonard Cohen
Chords: C, Am, C, Am, F, G, C
Leonard Cohen is one of the finest songwriters that ever put pen to paper, and among many of his many literary achievements, Hallelujah is right up there. You can play it with just these four chords, but the order is slightly more complicated so you’ll need a bit of patience. Worth it though.
Note: there is no capo for the Leonard Cohen version, for the Jeff Buckley version add a capo on 1st fret.
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No Woman No Cry – Bob Marley
Chords: C, G, Am, F
By now you’ll notice that reggae is fertile territory when it comes to easy ukulele songs. There are plenty of Marley songs that work brilliantly on the uke, but for sake of argument, we plucked this one out because it’s one of this most well known.
Land Down Under – Men at Work
Verses: Am, G, Am, F, G / Chorus: C, G, Am, F, G
This classic number from Aussie 80’s band Men at Work introduced us to Vegemite sandwiches and men that ‘chunder’. It’s also a stellar track to play on the uke and a perfect beginner ukulele song as it’s the same five chords on repeat.
Leaving on a Jet Plane – John Denver
Chords: Verse: G, C, G, C, G, C, D / Chorus: G, C, G, C, D
This list wouldn’t be complete without a tune from John Denver. It just so happens that Leaving on a Jet Plane is one of those easy ukulele songs and is a crowd-pleaser to boot. You pull this one out at your next get together and people will be singing along in no time.
Save Tonight – Eagle Eye Cherry
Chords: Am, F, C, G
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As pop songs go, Eagle Eye Cherry’s Save Tonight is right up there with the finest. It’s fun to play.
We’ve transversed the entirety of popular music to bring you this list of easy ukulele songs. From Bob Dylan to Vance Joy to Israel Kamakawiwo’ole to Bruno Mars, you see that you can play really any sort of music on the ukulele and it will sound unbelievably good. Refreshingly good, in fact.
Remember, chords aren’t everything, so focus on mixing up the strumming patterns and make those interesting too. The uke is such a cool instrument isn’t it, now go make some music!