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Sing along with Marlene

April 6, 2020

Marlene Timmins loves a song. She also loves to make people smile. Recently the Braeside Park apartments’ supervisor took to her favourite instrument – a banjolele – to spread a bit of happiness.

Choosing the 1920s tune – Side by Side, Marlene changed the words to make them relevant to this year’s pandemic.

“I deliberately chose the song because I knew our residents would know the words and the tune. I am not the best singer in the world but the idea of bringing a smile to a few people’s faces fills me with a lot of joy,” Marlene said.

Marlene has always loved the sound of the banjo but after looking at one in a music shop and much research she realised it would be too cumbersome and a difficult instrument to master.

“The banjolele is smaller and has the same tuning as a Ukulele so it is easier to learn and much cheaper to buy a good quality one than a banjo, but has a similar sound,” Marlene said.

Last year, she bought a banjolele online – her first every instrument.

“I watched free online videos to learn to play, I practise nearly every day even for a few minutes as I find it relaxing. You can also “pick” the strings rather than strum and the melody is less harsh. It sounds almost like a harp,” she said.

 

"I love the fact that Rushall Park residents and volunteers are so active – contributing to life in the village. The sense of the community is strong which is why I put my name on the waiting list" - Maggie Birkett.

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