Did you know you can attend virtual ukulele concerts in Second Life?
Second Life is a virtual world you access through the Internet. You create an avatar — a virtual representation of yourself. I’ve been interested in how virtual worlds like SL (Second Life) would impact distance education.
If you’ve never seen Suzanne’s Guitar on YouTube, it is a beautiful piece of machinima. Machinima is the art of creating movies in and of virtual worlds. So Suzanne Vega, one of the first real people to hold a virtual concert in SL had someone build her a virtual guitar. She then held a virtual concert in SL with real music streaming through the Internet. You could watch her avatar play the virtual guitar. It is a strange thing at first, but eventually you comprehend it all and it grows on you. To build virtual things in SL you start with a prim — a shape. The builder of Suzanne’s guitar starts with a box. And then you get creative. Building in SL takes a bit of time to learn.
At some point, I created a movie/machinima because I wanted to know how long it would take.
As I was recording my own machinima, I tried to multitask. While I used the keyboard to make my avatar walk, I recorded into the microphone. I thought I could save time by recording the audio and video at the same time. Not so easy. Making the avatar walk, turn corners and take in the scenery took some concentration and resulted in halting speech. I imagine it’s more tricky to play the ukulele, sing, and think in SL.
One of the things that made creating the machinima an enjoyable experience was using Gerald Ross‘s ukulele composition as the background music track. When I e-mailed Gerald and asked if I could use his music for an educational video he agreed after he’d seen the video.
You may enjoy the concerts of electric ukulele artist TB Andel in Second Life. His Web site claims, “His style of World Music is based on Portuguese Folk Music with a original touch of jazz, fado and afro music. ”
Andel’s online bio and calendar share where he is playing in Real Life (RL) and SL. It will take a day or so to wrap your brain around this concept.
Andel’s had his electric ukulele replicated virtually for performances in SL just as Suzanne Vega had her guitar created virtually.
Fortunately you can view a YouTube video of Andel’s SL concert and don’t need to sign in for an account in SL to hear him.
Be careful though. You know too much time on the computer can detract from actually playing the real ukulele.
Pick up your uke and strum a tune.