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Archive for the ‘Cycle Chic’ Category

So not much ukulele in the last posts… So here are a couple of pictures of the little Nippers showing how easy it is to carry a ukulele by bicycle.

uke carryuke carry2

BSY

Nipper

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I ride a Pashley Roadster and Jim (Night Owls lead ukulele player) rides a Raleigh Roadster. We have both been cycling all our lives and use the bicycle as our primary mode of transport, but the roadsters are new bikes for us.

The Pashley is for me a return to my childhood days when I rode a 3 speed sit up and beg. I loved that bike, it transported me to school everyday and was my first taste of teenage freedom. After 20 years on my Dawes Galaxy touring bike I decided it was time to return to the simplicity and comfort of a traditional bike and so the Pashley has become my new number one.

So with two new bikes Jim and I decided it was time don our tweed jackets and head into town for a bit of posing… We had rather a jolly time and filmed our afternoons riding for blogging purposes. So here is the film complete with ukulele soundtrack.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Roadsters! – Bicycle and Ukulele from Nipper on Vimeo.

It is worth noting that in Taunton bike parking on the High Street comes complete with a ‘No Cycling’ sign…

BSY

Nipper

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Here is a video podcast from Top Shop featuring the gorgeous Pashley Sonnet Bliss and the ukulele styling of Noah and the Whale.  The video was released last year, but with the combination of ukulele and cycle chic, I just had to blog it.

BSY

Nipper

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I love ukuleles. playing them, writing about them and teaching people how to play them.

I travel everywhere by bicycle.

In the last few months I have began reading several cycling blogs and thinking more about bicycle advocacy.  In the early 1990’s I rode in a few Critical Mass rides and thought the time was coming for a change in attitude toward bikes. Sadly the change here in the UK has been too slow and despite the advent of cycle paths and the ‘work’ of Sustrans our roads are still dominated by cars.

A few years ago I realised that allowing my blood to boil everyday as cars took risks with my life, was counter productive and causing me a great deal of stress.  I needed a change and the ukulele became my focus, I became part of the ukulele revolution, teaching ukulele, starting a uke club and writing about the benefits of the four string wonder.  I stopped worrying about cars and cycling, my stress reduced I just used my bike to get around and take me too and from work.

In Copenhagen there has been a bicycle revolution,  having worked out the cycling infrastructure, those stylish Danes have began to cycle in huge numbers.   They don’t cycle for leisure or sport but use the bike as an everyday mode of transport. Documented by Mikael Coleville Anderson, Cycle Chic is beginning to spread throughout the world.  It is the kind of cycling I want to see everywhere, an end to the tyranny of cars and a return to the days of mass utilitarian cycling.

In an article in ‘The Ride’ magazine Coleville Anderson describes how the way to inspire new cycle commuters is to show them how a real, everyday bicycle can be ridden with style by everyday folks in everyday clothes.  He describes how the Joe Everyman car driver needs to “see his own reflection in these cyclists.”

I am fed up with this ridiculous and dangerous car culture, it is time for bicycle revolution, but one led by infrastructural change and cyclists in everyday clothes on everyday bikes.  It is time to ‘Copenhagenise’.

So what of the ukulele?  Like the the bicycle, the ukulele was once a respected mainstream instrument, but over the years it has become a comic device, a children’s toy.  The ukulele revolution in uke clubs around the world has begun to change this, and like the bicycle it is time for it to once again become an everyday part of the mainstream.

BSY

Nipper

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