Mount Airy Ukulele Invasion teaches people how to play the ukulele

MOUNT AIRY, N.C. -- It's much more than just a music class. The name MAUI, which stands for Mount Airy Ukulele Invasion, says it all.

“The class is really exciting,” said instructor George Smith, who started the course in 2013 at the suggestion of his wife. “I was hoping for six people to come and 17 people showed up.”

Ever since, the class continues to grow, bringing students from as far away as Charlotte and Boone and ranging in all ages.

“It's grown into something that is almost indescribable,” he said. “It’s a community, people getting together for fellowship, positive time and encouragement to each other.”

Smith says many popular songs can be played with just three simple cords.

"As far as all the string instruments, it’s the easiest to learn,” he said, just before his recent Tuesday night class. “I've had people walk in that are 8 years old, that walk out after a 30-minute lesson and say ‘Yes, I'm a rock star!'”

Classes are held at the Olde Mill Music on Main Street. Information one the classes can be found here.

“It’s such an amazing sound when you think about,” he said. “This little instrument comes together with a group of people and it sounds powerful.”

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