A Spanish Valentine

by Mike Wilson

For your younger choirs, here is a simple and relatively short song that features a little Spanish and ukulele playing. It is set up as a three chord song that you play three times through. Sing the first time, play a strum pattern on the ukulele the second time, then sing again the third time before going to the third ending at bar 21.

The ukulele part begins at bar 5 with a simple downstroke on the first beat of each measure (the upper ukulele staff on the music). If your kids are using a pick, be sure to have them hold it correctly so they don't build bad habits. Make a thumbs up with the right hand, relax the index finger a bit, place the pick on the first section of the index finger, and close the thumb down onto it. The point should be at a right angle to the thumb. Hold it firmly enough so as not to drop it, but don't hold it with an extreme grip. Then use a combination of arm and wrist movement to strum the pattern. There are myriad examples online if you want a visual.

When you repeat at measure 5, begin the strumming pattern, D DU UD for that time through (the lower ukulele staff on the music). You have the option now of maintaining the pattern for the remainder of the song, or you may revert back to the single down stroke at the beginning of each measure (whole notes) the third time around.

The lyric "Catorce de febrero" is translated "the fourteenth of February." And "El Día de San Valentín" is translated "Saint Valentine's Day." We have included a simple pronunciation guide in case you need it. You will find it along with the extracted ukulele part online at our web site.

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.