Ukulele genius Jake Shimabukuro is making quite a stir in the jazz world. In the midst of this acclaim, he will be featured in Orange County,Thursday, March 24, at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa as part of a national tour.
Born in 1976 in, he has become a virtuoso on this unlikely jazz instrument. Known for his complex finger work, his music also brings in aspects of rock and pop which adds to his phenomenal crowd appeal.
Playing ukulele since age 4, he initially gained attention in Hawaii at 22 as a member of Pure Heart trio when the group released its eponymous first album which won it four Na Hoku Hanohano Awards (the Hawaiian counterpart of the Grammy Awards).
Later, as a solo artist, he experimented with using unusual pedal effects to make new sounds that few would associate with an ukulele. In 2009, he gave a break-out performance accompanying Hawaiian-born Bette Midler at the Royal Variety Performance in England as they performed a rendition of the Beatles song "In My Life."