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If Freddy Mercury were alive, I'm sure he would be in awe of Jake Shimabukuro's virtuoso ukulele version of "Bohemian Rhapsody." As he did on his first album with the George Harrison classic "While My Guitar Gently Weeps," Shimabukuro reinterprets this Queen song on four strings and two octaves. He also offers Leonard Cohen the gift of a unique, emotionally charged ukulele version of his classic "Hallelujah." These two cover songs are worth the price of admission alone on Shimabukuro’s new music experience.

There are nine original songs on this instrumental album that span Shimabukuo's musical influences — smooth jazz, classical, flamenco, traditional Hawaiian, and rock. Two standouts are "Boy Meets Girl," a sunny, romantic tune, and "Pianoforte," where he imitates a piano duet with his ukulele.

One critic summed it up best: “The sounds the boyish 33-year-old wrings from his ukulele...are unlike anything else in the history of the instrument.”

  • Album: Peace Love Ukulele (2011)
  • Artist: Jake Shimabukuro
  • Label: Mail Boat Records
  • Songs: (1) 143 (Kelly's Song) (2) Bohemian Rhapsody (3) Bring your ADZ (4) Boy Meets Girl (5) Go for Broke (6) Trapped (7) Variation on a Dance (8) Pianoforte (9) Five Dollars Unleaded (10) Ukulele Bros. (11) Hallelujah (12) Bohemian Rhapsody (live version)
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