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It is time for the world's first Ukulele Concerto, and who better to write it than the first composer ever commissioned through eBay?

As far as I can tell, no one has ever written a Concerto for Ukulele and Orchestra. It is about time that changed. I think I am qualified to write the first ever Ukulele Concerto, and maybe incorporate some variations on the popular "La Folia" melody (which you can hear in the video above). I am the first composer ever commissioned to write a Horn Concerto over the Internet. I have notation software. And I have a ukulele. Only one thing holding me back: lack of replacement strings.

I have so far been lucky with my ukulele, which I bought from Professional Guitars in Ferndale back in 2009. Since then, I have twice replaced the strings on my mandolin, which I hardly ever practice. My uke, on the other hand, I practiced almost every day of 2010 and it still has its OEM strings. But with my kind of luck, the strings would probably as I was in the middle of writing a big, new piece.

With $10 I should be able to get one, maybe two sets of replacement strings. I shouldn't use any of the partial amount I have so laboriously and strenuously raised towards a string quartet concert, whether I (hopefully) get to put it on or (realistically) I have to refund the backers of that project. Nor can I really use the money earmarked for my extremely arduous job search, which is fraught with so many dead ends and false hopes. So I turn to Kickstarter for help.

I'm envisioning a piece lasting 10 to 15 minutes, for a chamber orchestra with 2 oboes, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, timpani and strings plus continuo. And oh yes, it should be tonal. None of that avant-garde crap, nor the silly pursuit of originality that causes so many modern composers to sound exactly alike.

Of course I would like to get it played by an orchestra, whether with me or someone else as the soloist, but since even my little string quartet concert seems so pie-in-the-sky now, I will probably have to settle for a computer realization for the accompaniment. Perhaps I should be encouraged by the example of Anton Bruckner, who never heard his Fifth Symphony played at least in the 2-piano arrangement, yet wrote another four Symphonies after that.

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    An e-postcard of someone playing the ukulele somewhere in Detroit, e-mailed to you.

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    A postcard of someone playing the ukulele somewhere in Detroit, snail mailed to you.

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    A PDF of the Concerto e-mailed to you.

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    A recording of me playing a potential cadenza for the Concerto e-mailed to you.

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    A PDF of the Ukulele Concerto and a recording of the piece with a recording of me playing the piece with a synthesized orchestra.

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    A PDF of the Ukulele Concerto and a recording of the piece with a recording of me playing the piece with a pianist playing the piano reduction of the orchestral parts.

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    A handwritten copy of the score of the Ukulele Concerto and a recording of the piece with a live orchestra. (The score may deviate from the final version in minor details).

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