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See who's involved in Ukulele Safari Australia!

  Ukulele Hitchhikers...
Rose Turtle Ertler (AUS), Meredith Axelrod (USA), Uni and her Ukelele (USA), Mr. Jaynickel (BELGIUM) and Jim D'Ville (USA) are joining us for small portions of the trip!
  Yalego - Performer/Safari Oz co-host
We are very, very lucky indeed that "Ukulele Troubadour" Yan Yalego of France has enthusiastically agreed to come on board as a Ukulele Safari Australia special guest.
Known and admired for his deep crooning, effortless playing and astounding mouth trumpet, Yan is perfect for the job.
He is a festival veteran both internationally and within France, and his warm yet cool and laid-back style makes for an excellent Safari companion!

Check out his website, MySpace page, YouTube Channel and his ukulele record label, Ukulele Division.

We're also pleased to announce that Yalego's participation in the Safari has been generously subsidised by Ohana Ukuleles.

Here's the shared song we did with Yalego as part of Ukulele Safari 2008, in the South of France - "Mon Amant de Saint Jean":

Here he is Live in Milan with the incredible Max De Bernardi playing a ukulele classic with a-feelin' (check out the "trumpet" solo!):

Here's Yalego at home with the Safari on his mind:

Yalego is sponsored on Safari by Ohana Ukuleles.ohana_logo_2

*1#Yalego - Performer/Safari Oz co-host
  Gensblue - Perfomer/Safari Oz co-host
We're overjoyed to announce the confirmation of our 2nd international guest for the Oz Safari 2010...

GENSBLUE of Japan!

Gens-san is an award winner from the 2007 Kiwaya Ukulele Contest in Tokyo, and recently performed at the 39th Annual Ukulele Festival in Oahu, Hawaii.
Originally a guitarist, Gensblue has spent time in Brazil exploring the bossa nova genre.
A former actor, he now makes his living producing beautiful leather bags and other finely hand-crafted accessories... using techniques derived from Native American leather-work.
He also teaches guitar and runs a community ukulele-circle in Kamakura.
Most importantly he's a great guy, and it's gonna be so much fun travelling with him and Yalego for 3 months!

Here is a music video we made for his "walking bass" arrangement: All That Ukulele Xmas"

And the original collaborative composition we did as part of the Ukulele Safari 2008: "Earthquake"...

Here's a blog archive of our first meeting in early 2008.

1#Gensblue - Perfomer/Safari Oz co-host
  Jo Bangles - Assistant Director, Camera.
We met Jo on our recent trip to Melbourne when she came to our gig at Uptown Jazz Cafe.
She's a surfer, uker, filmmaker and member of MUK.
She once documented her travels across the Americas by motorbike, and some of her work can be seen on Lonely Planet...

We got together for lunch and she liked the Safari Australia idea so much she offered to be part of the project! Since then Jo's become a real friend, and she's an invaluable support with our planning and ideas.
We're really thrilled, and her experience, enthusiasm, sportiness and good humour will make the project all the more exciting!

Jo Bangles doing her thang!
2#Jo Bangles - Assistant Director, Camera.
Photo: Steve Arklay Photography
  Mark Riley - Driver
Mark Riley

Mark is a mate of ours from Kuranda who is leaving for the South America again in March to develop his small-tour business, Chakana Andean Cultural Travel...

We asked him a while back if he'd like to be the Safari Oz driver, and as he was leaving in March he didn't think he could. But after we talked about it over a Christmas bevvy, we realised he could join the Safari from Cairns to Melbourne, and fly out to Bolivia from there!

And so it will be! Thanks Mark - you're gonna be able to play the uke before you hit the Americas again!

Chakana Travel is a culturally focused, privately owned boutique Tour Operator that offers a distinct and unique variety of personalized small group overland adventure travel experiences, ranging from 7 to 59 nights in duration, throughout Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia in Latin America.

“With Chakana I want you to feel the culture. I want you to taste it on the tip of your tongue. To smell it and breath it in, to fill your lungs with it and soak it up into the very pores of your skin. I want you to feel alive and bask in it like I do. So come on, ‘indulge your senses’ and ‘feel the culture’ with Chakana Travel in the Mystical Lands of the Inca” - Mark

Mark Riley - Driver