12 Perfect Songs for the Ukulele

0001-15772158Not one…not two… you get 12 Thursday Therapy Tunes this week! Summer is coming at us fast and that means it’s time to pull out the ukuleles! Though they are fun to use any time of year, I usually don’t spend as much time with mine in the colder months. All of the recent sunshine and warm weather has got me in a chipper mood and I have been playing mine more frequently the past few weeks. There are so many great songs to use with the cheery instrument, but when deciding which were my top 12 these are the ones that made the list!


1. Over the Rainbow/Wonderful World- (1993) Israël Kamakawiwo’ole- Obviously, this one had to be on the list! Such a great song for so many uses.

2. In the Good Old Summertime- (1902) Evans & Sheilds- The video below has to be by far my favorite version of this song. Bubbly, fun and Nat King Cole has a ukulele!

3. Three Little Birds- (1977) Bob Marley– A happy-feel-good song deserves to be played on a happy-feel-good instrument.

4. Don’t Worry Be Happy- (1988) Bobby McFerrin- Similar to Three Little Birds but you can throw in some whistles.

5. 5 Years Time- (2008) Noah and the Whale- Speaking of whistling… check out this whistling intro! Super fun song in so many ways.

6. Hakuna Matata from the Lion King (1994)- Kids love this one on the ukulele! It works perfectly.

7. Tiptoe Through the Tulips- (1929) Nick Lucas, (1968) Tiny Tim- I prefer to stick with the classic Nick Lucas version on uke, but Tiny Tim usually makes for good conversation 😉

8. Be Ok- Ingrid Michaelson (2008)- The bright sound of the ukulele matches the lyrics perfectly and the fun bounce of the song’s rhythm plays off of the uke’s bouncy sound. What a perfect pair!

9. Hey Soul Sister- (2009) Train- Another obvious addition…

10. You’ve Got a Friend in Me- (1996) Randy Newman (from the movie Toy Story)- This is by far the hardest to play on the list, but it definitely works great with the ukulele and is another one that kids love.

11. Riptide- (2014) Vance Joy- Here is a recent song that I just recently added to the repertoire. Super fun and easy to play, which is exactly why I like it so much 🙂

12. Ukulele Lady- (1925) Kahn & Whiting- If you are a music therapist and reading this make sure that you know this song. It is PERFECT for speech work with the tongue and is a cute and fun! This song works across a span of ages as well, so it is definitely one of my favorites!

Are there any favorite ukulele songs that you would add to the list? I would love to hear! Let me know in the comments below 🙂

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