Paul Jonson

Folks describe Paul as a Blues Ukulele Player Extraordinaire and a blues ukulele legend, and he travels to share his ukulele magic at international festivals. He often uses unique custom adapted ukes and resonator ukuleles to express the true feeling of the traditional folk singers and original blues masters, and his mission is to astound any audience with the versatility of this humble four string instrument. He features blues, boogie, ragtime and traditional folk songs in a concert and/or workshop format to acquaint the keen ukulele players with finger picking, alternative strumming, chording and tuning techniques that express the feeling of these styles of music. He has traveled widely to share a particular uke style because of his love for music. He has featured at ukulele and folk festivals in New Zealand, many cities in Australia, from Cairns in the north to Melbourne and Adelaide in the south, and recent travels in Europe included ukulele gigs in Italy and Spain. His passion for 4 stringed instruments has led him to running an annual NZ 4StringFestival, and his longest road tour was in November 2018, doing 23 concerts and numerous workshops over a month.

Paul's creativity with the uke has something of interest for everyone, and he'll share his techniques and talent freely, to all wanting to grow their own playability.

Riverton Ukulele Troupe

We are “The RUT”, aka The Riverton Uke Troupe although, on occasion, we have been known as “The Beetroots” for playout performances.
We don’t play out much because we play and sound best in Jenni’s house. She has hosted the Riverton Uke Troupe weekly since its inception in late 2008. This effectively has enabled her to enjoy many companionable hours of friendship, music and quite a few shared bottles of wine.
Also, loosely labeled Jenni’s Therapy Group, a rough count reveals participation by nearly 80 musicians over the years, retaining an average of six ukulele players turning up every Wednesday night for some musical socializing. A core of five regulars has provided a solid, encouraging base for newcomers to build up their skills, as well as further developing each other’s abilities.
New songs arrive practically every week with some surviving to be played often or rehearsed for playouts. Each session’s play is determined by participant choice and this democracy has served the group well. One thing Jenni has managed to retain is that the group is a Uke Troupe, not an Orchestra.
Two bass players did manage to infiltrate. One played an acoustic bass, but only when his fingers got the better of him seeking those elusive, deep companion notes on his uke. The other was a cool, plug-in rubber stringed uke bass. Otherwise, we continue to be one of the longest surviving Ukulele groups in New Zealand...and long live this type of get-together and the little instrument that has brought music and singing back Into peoples’ lives and homes

Ukonz - (Christchurch)

We are Ukonz from Christchurch
We all play at the Cashmere Club Thursday Group
David plays Uke and guitar. Christine plays uke and accordion and many other instruments
Ngaire and Trevor also play in country groups. Trevor on steel and bass
Together we are looking forward  to another wonderful Lauder Ukulele festival.


Carl Bonniface

One of the origional members of the Secret Lives bunch,but have managed to escape for the Festival weekend. I plonk away on my old resonator uke and like to cruise through some John Prine,John Hiatt,Willie Nelson,Leon Redbone etc,so maybe a slight Country influence there. Looking forward to returning to Lauder. Haven't missed one yet! (Carl)

Bruce Kenyon

Bruce Kenyon – Wellington 

Ukulele player for 4-5 years – I do a bit of old style blues, a bit of country and anything else that appeals to me at the time. Regular attendee at the 4 Strings Kawhia and Opotiki Island View Festivals, Gisborne Ukulele Underground and recently at the Cabana Napier. Looking forward to my first South Island visit with the ukulele and my first appearance on the main stage.

Secret Lives of Ukulele

From straight out of Otatahi-Christchurch Paul Lee is co-founder and MD with the legendary Secret Lives of Ukulele. Paul will be performing solo and with specially invited guests; both new songs  and quirky covers.  A modest blend of witty word-play and ukulele artistry calculated to make you stop and think and then get you up dancing!

LX Ukes (Alexandra)

LX Ukes is a group of enthusiastic and talented musicians with an eclectic repertoire of material. We try to surprise with neat harmonies tied into strong rhythms and clever lead ukulele. If everyone is available we number nine, but that doesn't always happen. In the time that LX Ukes has been together we have raised over $13,000 which has been donated to various charities. We were thrilled to win the Art and Culture section, of the Trustpower Community awards a few years ago. Members of LX Ukes have been strong supporters of ukulele events in Lauder, Alexandra and the. wider area of Central Otago, and are pleased to help support the growth of the ukulele phenomenon worldwide.

We are thrilled to be coming to the Lauder Ukefest again.

Stone the Crows

The group was originally called ‘Three and a Half’ as a working name until it was decided to rename it to 'Stone the Crows' after a song from Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat resonated with the group.


We came together in December 2018 with a common love of music. Each person has a different approach to the songs they bring to the group and this has been beneficial as it has extended what we are playing on our ukuleles and introduced us to different genres. 


We are pushing the boundaries with our songs, by introducing new instruments into the fold alongside the ukuleles. 


Anne, Tania, Jackie and Frankie are looking forward to Lauder and look forward to meeting you.

Pic'n Mix (Invercargill)

Pic n Mix from Invercargill are once again pleased to be coming to Lauder. The group has been around now for ten years, but it has been a quiet year and they have extended their focus from the fifties into the beat sound of the 60’s as they put on their style (as Mr Donegan would say). While a couple have retired from the group for health reasons the rest have been physically enhanced, to carry on with the songs you wished you could forget. From girl groups to Max Bygraves they go to great depths to find the worst songs of the era for your edification.


Lauder Ukes ( Lauder)

The Lauder Ukes started with Uke lessons from our leader, Bruce MacDonald. We originally met in the lounge of the Lauder School B&B. We now  have a group of eight - we meet bi-weekly at the home of Sue Murpy and spend our time finding, learning and practicing new songs to suit our various choices, singing voices and style. Five of our group live around Lauder, two are ex-pat Lauder-ites and one is a complete ring-in, but our love for uke - playing  and singing binds us together to entertain at the local pubs, rest homes and other functions that call for light entertainment.


Ukes In Thyme ( Alexandra)

Ukes in Thyme are a really enthusiastic group of singers and ukulele players based in Alexandra, New Zealand. They  all (or most!)  started as pupils of KiwisCan Ukulele!, a ukulele school run by Barry (Baz) Bemrose In our now famous basement Music room (currently splitting at the seams!) We have performed in a wide variety of locations - the Thyme Festival, various senior homes and most memorably in entertaining a group of golfers after a well-lubricated golf tournament. Birthday parties have also been catered to! We had a great experience a couple of years ago in the Alexandra Blossom Festival Parade when we entertained thousands of people from the back of a truck with our "Ukuleles for Peace" float. All the better to promote the ukulele and our festival! We continue to grow in numbers and in musical repertoire - long may we prosper!

Warren "Wazza" Watson and Uke Hombres

Dunedin and Christchurch based. Playing baritone ukulele.. Been involved with theatre , bands & music clubs over the years. Perform a mix of styles from traditional Folk, Pop, Rock... and write a few myself.  Love to sing and get "The Audience " involved.  
Warren will be joined by Fiona Cambridge, James Passmore, Greg Hings  and Angus Mackay.

Mary Anne Ward - (Fairlie)


Mary Anne has been playing ukulele for a number of years now and enjoying writing songs for the last couple of years. She is returning to Lauder to perform another set of original songs - songs in a folk style, with stories about events, places and people.

Mary Anne will be accompanied on bass by Nikki Hall.


From the Top Te Anau


We are a group of thirteen extremely varied talented enthusiastic ukulele lovers.

Brought together by Te Anau’s TVNZ1 Good Sorts Jackie Knowles (July 2020),

following a workshop at our local Redcliff Cafe by the Nukes in February 2016

Initially performing only at our Annual Christmas Party in the Park and now sharing our

Uke love at Fundraisers, Waitangi Celebrations, Birthdays, Schools, Variety Shows, Pop up Cafe Strums and Christmas Parties.  We are of varied ages and stages from 16 to 85 years.

Jackie and husband Jeremy (now bass player of 1 year), and Daughter Maggie host

weekly uke jams, initially in their lounge but now in a music studio converted in their shed.

The band is highlighted by Sandy on Violin, Jim on Cajon/Percussion and lead vocalists 

Jackie, Jan, Kirsty and Mike on the washboard.  Backing Biatches are Sherron, Bernie, Mihoko, accompanied by Donna and Helen.

Music is magic and the key to survival and sanity.  We love how we continue to grow and 

strive off each other and especially the laughs and making new memories.

We are always mindful….”we could be better,” but you get what you pay for lol.

We can’t wait to get over the hill for our first out of town experience and meet more like minded ukulele lovers.


Wanaka Ukuleles

Don't Fret - Invercargill

Invercargill group Dont Fret! don’t let the southern temps cool their musical enthusiasm.  Featuring ukulele, banjolele, harmonica, cajon, melodica, percussion and u-bass we enjoy playing a vast range of musical styles from classic rock to Maori waiata and everything in between.  We perform at local open mics, musicians club, street fairs, cafes, birthday parties, bridal showers retirement homes and festivals. The joy of playing ukulele and singing together makes our weekly get-together a fun social event.  We look forward to seeing you at Lauder 2021.

Ukes.Crom (Cromwell)


We are a flexible group of keen ukulele players from around the Cromwell area who meet weekly to practise and share songs.  We recently found a great practice venue at the Ripponburn Home on Wednesday evenings where we are often joined by several residents, some of whom play or sing with us and others are happy to just listen to our music.  We play a mix of songs from old to fairly new and we enjoy making them our own through working on different strums, harmonies and arrangements.