Hello! We are 'The Dinky Doos'
The Dinky Doos are a ukulele duo made up of ourselves - Karen Jones and Andrew Little. We both sing and play ukuleles and banjoleles and specialise in music from the 1920's 30's and 40's. We particularly like to sing songs made famous by the likes of Al Bowlly, Vera Lynn, Gracie Fields and George Formby.
The ukulele is shaped like a small wooden guitar and is the native instrument of Hawaii. It is the ideal musical instrument to accompany the human voice. Because it is smaller in size and doesn't sustain its sound like a guitar it allows for interesting strumming patterns and has a very pleasant sound which is well suited to sentimental and romantic songs.
The banjolele on the other hand is much more raucous! It is ideal for playing rousing, sing-along numbers such as the popular inspiring songs of the Second World War, e.g., 'Hang Out The Washing On The Siegfried Line'. It is shaped like a small-scale tenor banjo and has no trouble making itself heard! It was the instrument which George Formby used to great effect throughout his career.
The portability of the ukulele allows us to be quite flexible as regards the locations in which we can play and entertain people. A restaurant car on a preserved steam railway whilst the meals were being served to the diners was perhaps the best example of this so far! Also two voices and two ukuleles means that for smaller gatherings no amplification is required thus increasing flexibility and reducing costs because less work is required. That said, for more formal venues where amplification is helpful, we also have our own P.A. equipment together with backing tracks we have produced ourselves especially to fit in with the way we perform and play the songs.
All our ukuleles and banjoleles are either vintage instruments from the thirties and forties or excellent quality replicas made by custom makers.
We try and wear outfits which reflect the period in musical history we are trying to recreate. So thirties-style suits, hats and accessories and Hawaiian outfits. George Formby, Gracie Fields and Vera Lynn all volunteered to join the Entertainments National Services Association, (E.N.S.A.) which was the entertainments branch of the armed forces during the Second World War.
We have managed to obtain army uniforms which are very close to standard issue ENSA uniforms and so this is another option towards creating a wartime forties effect.
We are available for bookings at most times including weekdays (prior engagements permitting). Our rates vary depending on times, days of the week, and the sort of event and venue where the entertainment is required.
We have recently produced our first CD recording which is entitled "Picking Up Steam" There are ten tracks on the CD, mostly popular songs from the Second World War, but it also includes one newly composed song entitled 'Totally Sold On You'. The CD costs £7 including post and packing to UK addresses.
1. Wish Me Luck As You Wave Me Goodbye|
2. Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy/ Don't Sit Under The Apple Tree
3. Bless 'Em All
4. Blue Hawaii
5. Happy Days Are Here Again
6. Leaning On A Lamppost
7. Totally Sold On You
8. Makin' Wicky Wacky Down In Waikiki
9. Hang Out The Washing On The Siegfried Line
10. We'll Meet Again
If you would like a copy (or more) then please send me a cheque for the total amount.
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