Sister Speak Summer Tour!


Sister Speak Belly Up Jan 25. Frank Rodrick Photography


Happy Canada Day (Turtle Island day)! It’s time to hit the road again, this time with the full band! We are getting excited to bring the new music home to British Columbia and neighbouring states Washington and Oregon this August!

For the northwest tour I’ll be joined by my bandmates, Canadian drummer Niko Friesen (Marcy Playground, Jane Sibery) and California’s Jacob Miranda and Greg Loman on bass and lead guitar. Fellow Canadian and lead guitarist Lonny Eagleton (Shawn Hook) will join for the ladder B.C. shows. We are stoked to perform songs from the upcoming EP as a band and of course songs from the Rise Up For Love album!

The summer band tour kicks off at CBC Vancouver’s nooner series August 10th and runs through eastern Washington, Portland’s acclaimed Doug Fir Lounge, Seattle, the Olympic Peninsula, then back to the BC Interior for our debut at Penticton’s Dream Café, and concerts in Kamloops, Revelstoke, the Vernon area and hometowns Kelowna and Victoria.

Taylor Guitars Berlin

A reader emailed me the other day with the question, “What instrument should I play?” The right musical instrument for you is ultimately a personal preference. But, there are a few things you need to consider before making your final pick. In this article, I’ll describe how to choose the best instrument to play.

What instrument should you play? Some instruments are easier to learn than others. I recommend you choose an easier instrument so that you can learn it faster and not become discouraged. You can then learn a harder instrument afterward if you choose.

The ukulele is my favorite recommendation for you to start playing. It is not only easy to play, it is affordable, lightweight, and great for songwriting.

The top 10 instruments I recommend you learn to play are as follows:

  1. Ukulele
  2. Recorder
  3. Flute
  4. Harmonica
  5. Drums
  6. Piano/Keyboard
  7. Clarinet
  8. Saxophone
  9. Harp
  10. Electric Guitar

Read on to learn more about what instrument you should play, and how to choose.

What Instrument Should I Play? – Top Picks

The below instruments are ones I recommend you learn to play because they are not too difficult. They are also fairly affordable and are popular instruments so you can find online resources for learning them.


The ukulele makes me think of the sun, clear-water beaches, and Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwoʻole’s version of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” Its happy and relaxing tone makes it a great musical instrument to play, regardless of whether a person is a musician or a non-musician.

Compared to the guitar, the ukulele is much easier to learn. Give yourself ten minutes, and you’ll surely pick up the basics within that period. If you want to play full songs with proficiency, you need around three to six months.

 Electric Guitar

One year: That’s the typical amount of time you need to play intermediate level songs and feel more confident playing barre chords (using one finger to press multiple strings at the same time on a single fret). In general, you’ll already know if you have the passion for learning the electric guitar and the potential to become really great at it within the first three to six months.

One reason electric guitars are an appealing choice for beginners or young children is its smaller size (when compared to acoustic guitars). When buying your first electric guitar, consider the following factors:

You don’t need to limit yourself to the musical instruments above. If you want, you can even learn more than one instrument. With the help of a nurturing and skilled teacher, you’ll eventually feel confident and adept at playing whatever instrument you choose.

What type of ukulele is best for first-timers? Pick any of these ukulele sizes: soprano, concert, and tenor. Among the three, the soprano ukulele is the lightest and smallest. It’s suitable for players of any musical background or skill level.


A recorder is a type of flute with an internal duct (passageway) and fipple (mouthpiece). The structure of a recorder is composed of three parts called joints:

  • Head joint (houses the mouthpiece)
  • Body joint (main pipe)
  • Foot joint (can be rotated to change the position of the tone hole)

Back in the 14th century, students used recorders as a practice flute. People, even children as young as three, can be good at playing this musical instrument once they master the basics (blowing, fingering, and tonguing).


The third instrument on our list of “what instrument should I learn” is the flute. You might ask, “What’s the difference between a recorder and a flute?” Their most obvious difference is the way a flutist or a recorder player holds them.

  • Flute: A flute is held sideways (9 o’clock direction) at a 45-degree angle.
  • Recorder: A recorder is also held at the same angle, but it should be pointing a distance away from the chest.

At a beginner level, you can learn to play many notes on the flute in just a few days or weeks. However, if you really want to be good at it, enroll yourself in a flute program that’s appropriate for your level, so you can spend a lot of time practicing.


The nicest thing about the harmonica is that you can place it inside your pocket and take it anywhere. Plus, it’s almost impossible for it to sound awful, even if it’s your first time to use it.

The harmonica isn’t really a popular first musical instrument for kids. However, kids of all ages, particularly those ages 4 to 5 years old, can start creating music and have fun playing the harmonica.

Beginners who are into blues, country, pop, or country music would love the 10-hole harmonica (tuned to the key of C). The Suzuki F-20J-G Fabulous 10-Hole Diatonic Just Temperament Harmonica, Key of G (view deal on Amazon) is made of high-quality materials.

It produces a rich sound, making it worth the extra money. Chromatic harmonicas are perfect for you if you’re a jazz or classical music type of person.


If you are still asking yourself “What instrument should I play”, continue reading! Drums are one of the best and easiest instruments you can learn to play.

Some people only need half an hour to learn the basic beats on drums. However, becoming proficient at drumming is another story. On average, you need a year or two (or longer) of constant practice and learning to become a reliable, highly skilled drummer.