MUGs – Our story so far
Mansfield Ukulele Group (MUGS) was started, as far as we can remember, in 2009 by Sandy as an offshoot of the Mansfield Folk Club. We few stalwarts met downstairs in the Brown Cow before the folk club. Sandy provided the song sheets and we practised for our occasional performances at the folk club upstairs and once at the Mansfield Folk Festival. We were always popular with the ladies’ darts team also!
When the folk club moved to the Black Bull, so did the MUGS. We gained new members and a new, complete songbook compiled and created entirely by Ainslie. Over the years, the songbook has grown and been modified to suit our voice range. We now have 75 songs (very few of which are folksongs), in the main songbook, but also a singalong book and a book of Christmas songs. Members continue to bring along new songs which we all try with varying degrees of success – but that is the fun of it.
Though originally part of the folk club, MUGS is now to all intents and purposes separate. We meet in the downstairs bar, where the staff are always helpful and friendly. We have a regular attendance of around 15, rising on a good night to 20 or so. Our members are all ages and all levels of expertise and ability. Several had never played an instrument before – beginners are always welcome (and helped and encouraged).
Our session is mainly an informal sing around, but we have performed at Mansfield Folk Festival and at Ukestock in Chesterfield. We also sing in a local care home to raise money for a local charity. At singers’ nights in the folk club there is usually a performance from one or other MUG – we have our fans upstairs too. When not practising for a performance, we mostly enjoy a good sing, with every member of the group choosing a song in turn. We like to have a chat and a laugh and we are all mad about the ukulele.
Please come to see us. To play along, sing along or just to listen.