Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra
Origin Wellington, New Zealand
Genres Various
Years active 2005–present
Associated acts Flight of the Conchords
Website www.ukulele.co.nz
Members Age Pryor
Bret McKenzie
Gemma Gracewood
Sam Auger
Steve Jessup
Francis Salole
Megan Hosking
Andy Morley-Hall
Dan Yeabsley
Carmel Russell
Nigel Collins
Bek Coogan[1]

The Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra is an ensemble of ukulele players based in Wellington, New Zealand. Apart from a double bass the band is composed entirely of ukuleles. Their repertoire consists mainly of covers of modern popular music and some ukulele and New Zealand standards. The increased public profile of one of their members Bret McKenzie — one half of the Flight of the Conchords — combined with the use of their songs for a nationwide advertising campaign for New Zealand bookstore chain Whitcoulls in late 2008 resulted in an increase in their national profile. On 15 December 2008 their Little Bit Wonderful EP reached no. 32 in the Official NZ Music Chart.[2] The same recording topped the NZ Indie Music Chart for January 2009.[3]

Until November 2008, the band played a weekly early morning gig in downtown Wellington. The band makes occasional short tours around New Zealand and has performed in festivals including Womad New Zealand, Cuba Street Carnival, New Zealand International Comedy Festival, Big Day Out Auckland and arts festivals in Christchurch, Nelson, Tauranga and Taupo.

In November 2008, the band debuted the Tim Capper-directed video for their cover of the song "It's a Heartache".

The band has recorded the theme music for the TV comedy Diplomatic Immunity, a documentary series about renowned New Zealand entertainer Sir Howard Morrison and a documentary about NZ war songs.[4]

In 2009, the band recorded their third EP, The Dreaming, at Neil Finn's Roundhead Studios.[4]


List of EPs
Title Tracklist
The Heartache EP
  • Released: 2007
  • Own record label (CD)
  1. "The Bucket" (3:22)
  2. "Weather With You" (3:10)
  3. "It's a Heartache" (4:46)
  4. "New Zealand Christmas Tree" (2:25)
  5. "Hoki Mai" (2:01)
A Little Bit Wonderful EP
  • Released: 2008
  • Own record label (CD)
  1. "Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town" (2:54)
  2. "Israelites (3:15)
  3. "Feliz Navidad (2:32)
  4. "Sophie" (3:25)
  5. "Walk In the Park" (2:25)
The Dreaming EP
  • Released: 28 September 2009
  • Own record label (CD)
  1. "Africa" (4:13)
  2. "Dreaming of You" (2:19)
  3. "Blue Smoke" (4:08)
  4. "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man" (3:27)
  5. "That's Amore" (2:48)
I Love You... EP
  • Released: 2011
  • Own record label (CD)
  1. "Afternoon Delight" (2:59)
  2. "Boogey Man" (3:47)
  3. "This Charming Man" (2:49)
  4. "All Through the Night" (4:35)
  5. "Raylene" (3:13)
  6. "Jolene (3:26)
  7. "Cry Me a River" (5:05)


  1. ^ "WIUO - The Orchestra". WIUO. Retrieved 2008-12-21. 
  2. ^ "digiRAMA - Music - The Charts". digiRAMA. Retrieved 2008-12-21. 
  3. ^ "IMNZ Independent Album Chart". IMNZ. Retrieved 2009-02-07. 
  4. ^ a b WIUO Press Kit (PDF)

External links[edit]