Well folks, we are a quarter of the way through the year and BUMS jams have taken off extremely well.

We had four jams in two weeks in early December and showed what we could do. Sadly, our usual BIG end of year jams were not possible. At Coorparoo, we had a “Not-JingleBUMS” jam.  The Northside Christmas Extravaganza was split into two jams at Ferny Grove and Wavell Heights.

January took the wind out of our sails when we were forced to cancel Westside and Ferny Grove jams because of the short Greater Brisbane COVID lockdown. But since then, we’ve been flying high. Each of our jams has a different style and format. We welcome BUMS financial members, all ukulele players and spectators.


The jams in February and March were booked solid, with maximum capacity of 50 spectators and 10 performers/crew.

There is a bar but no food at the Bowls Club but you are welcome to bring your own food. The jam has three sets of songs each run by a different leader/band. Usually, the first set contains well known songs with straightforward chords. The second two sets will include more challenging songs. We encourage open mic performers to strut their stuff too. If you would like to lead a set or do an open mic contact Max Borchardt on ">

Westside (Sinnamon Park)

The jam has a capacity of 45 players and five crew and has been fully booked in February and March. Moves are afoot to increase the maximum capacity.

It’s our only daytime jam at present and attracts an older audience. There is a café at the Rosemount Community Centre where coffee, snacks and delicious cakes are served. The whole jam is led by Sue and Peter Sercombe.  They have a gradually expanding repertoire of about 150 songs which they rotate over a six-month period. They take requests for new songs and welcome open mic performers. You can contact Sue and Peter on ">

Ferny Grove

The jam has a capacity of 50 players plus crew and was full in February and March.

There is a bistro at the Ferny Grove Bowls and Sport and Community Club which serves evening meals, coffee and snacks and there is a full-service bar. The whole jam is led by Linda Gough and Paul Morris who have a vast repertoire of well-known songs that most players will enjoy. They welcome open mic performers. You can contact Linda on ">

Northside (Wavell Heights)

The jam has a capacity of 60 plus crew and was fully booked in February and March.

There is a bar but no food at the Northern Suburbs Bowls Club (Wavell Heights) but you are welcome to bring your own food. The jam has three sets of songs each run by a different leader/band. Usually, the first set contains well known songs with straightforward chords.  The second two sets will include more challenging songs. We have occasional open mic performers too. The jam is run by Andrew Hunt and Peter Grace. If you would like to lead a set or do an open mic contact Peter on ">

For more details of our jams see the BUMS website at News and Events/Jams About Town.

Booking process

Our experience with our COVID-safe jams is that most people make their bookings on Trybooking within hours of the invitation email landing in their in-box. We operate a waiting list for people who didn’t get a ticket in the initial allocation. We encourage people who book a ticket and then can’t come to let us know so that all seats get filled on the night.

New players

It’s great to see familiar faces at each jam and we welcome newcomers to our BUMS community. Sue reported that one new member turned up at the Westside Jam, and after it was over, he told her, he’d be blocking out this time in his calendar from now on, as he had so much fun.

So, there you have it – BUMS bounces back in business. We set out initially to offer at least one jam a week to our members and would-be-members.  And that is what we have achieved. We are also conscious that we need different levels of songs, and we are encouraging set leaders to include playable titles. Even so, it is nice to stretch our abilities. A big thanks to the jam coordinators Peter and Sue Sercombe, Linda Gough and Paul Morris, Peter Grace and Andrew Hunt, and Max Borchardt.



Our COVID-safe jams are ALL ticketed events. Book through Trybooking. Email cancellations to or .

From February 2021, there are a few changes when booking your tickets on Trybooking.
BUMS aims to keep our community safe and to meet government requirements as we all continue to social distance and keep our jams COVID Safe.

Contact tracing records must now be in ELECTRONIC form. To enable us to capture this information in the easiest way, when you book tickets in Trybooking you must provide the following information for each attendee:
• First name
• Last name
• Email address
• Residential address (if email unavailable)
• Phone number
TIP: If booking for a friend, having these details on hand first, will make the booking process easier.

It is one of the perks of being a BUMS member that you can attend our jams for FREE. Members also get the opportunity to secure their tickets before the event goes public.
There is only ONE promocode issued for a month which can be used for any of the jams that month. Financial members can expect to receive this in an email on the last Monday of the previous month.
So, for example all financial members received their early bird invitation and promocode for February jams on Monday 25, January.

This means jam organisers, MCs, set leaders, performers, committee members, projectionists, roadies, door staff — everyone.
All volunteers will receive notification from their jam organiser when to book and a promocode to get their ticket before the event goes public. Make sure you secure your ticket promptly once you get the notification.

All the events have a venue capacity so we can ensure social distancing. Tickets are limited with a waiting list activated. If you miss out, please leave your details in the waiting list and if a ticket becomes available our team will contact you.
If you are unable to attend an event you have tickets for please let us know via email to Keryn Henderson at OR Jo Kunde via . All those eager players on the waiting list will thank you!

BUMS now have a Trybooking Event Page where all our public events are listed.

You can book multiple jam/events at the same time.

If you need some help booking, we’ve also updated our Trybooking Advice page.

If you aren’t receiving your BUMS newsletters and invitations, please search using and check your spam folder. If you need to update your email address, contact Keryn via

In ‘normal’ years, the Ferny Grove jam and the Northside jam at Wavell Heights join together and put on a Christmas Extravaganza at Ferny Grove Sports Club. Usually this is one of BUMS’ biggest jams of the year with up to 120 people attending and enjoy finger food, Christmas songs, door prizes and a pop ukulele shop.

With social distancing, we could not fit 120 people in the space at Ferny Grove, so we ran two jams, a week apart.

Ferny Grove jam

The first jam on 9 December was at Ferny Grove and 59 jammers and volunteers sat 1.5m apart. Linda Gough and Paul Morris ran the first band third sets. Paul, Andrew Hunt and Peter Grace ran the middle set. We reckon Paul must have had sore hands after playing bass all night.

Linda Gough and Paul Morris (with his Rudolph headgear)

Pop up uke shop at Ferny Grove jam

Pam Brogan with her ukulele door prize and Jazz from Morris Brothers.

Lesley Allan with her Build It ukulele door prize

Jam at Wavell Heights

The second jam was at the Northern Suburbs Bowls Club on 15 December and 55 jammers and volunteers enjoyed the now familiar Reception Hall.

At both jams, we played the same songs, had door prizes including a ukulele donated by Morris Brothers and had a pop-up ukulele shop. Sadly, no food was allowed due to COVID restrictions.

Paul Ransom did an open mic and gave us a great interpretation of the sexy Eartha Kitt song ‘Santa Baby’.

Andrew, Paul and Pete rock the Reception Hall

Lucky Linda lands a new uke.

The membership team – Sylvia, Keryn and Lesley.

Next jams

The next Ferny Grove jam will be held on Wednesday January 13. The next Northside (Wavell Heights) jam will be on Australia Day, 26 January.

The same COVID-safe arrangements will apply for both jams, and you will need to book a ticket. There will be 50 seats available for each jam. Watch out for your email invitations.

It was on again on December 2.  Finally BUMS members were able to assemble, strum their hearts out, and sing till their voices were croaky.

By realigning the layout of the seating and following social distancing rules, we fitted 60 people (included 10 support crew and set leaders) into the upstairs room at the Bowls Club.


Ian Phillips started the night.  He led the crowd in a musical welcome to country using a tune he had written himself and words from another ceremony.

Duo Ver (aka Amanda Allwood and Adrian Board) opened the night with a fine selection of songs.  Then Salli Chmura led the Ukulele Orchestra of Greater Brisbane in some delightfully entertaining instrumental pieces.

Andrew Hunt contributed a set of excellent rock ‘n’ roll numbers.  The evening was brought to a close by Darrell Reeves, Stephen Sandilands, Coady Brûlé, and Max Borchardt. All the sets enjoyed the support of Cath McCourt on bass. Her versatility, stamina and enthusiasm was wonderful to behold.

Steve, Cath, Coady, Darrell and Max lead the last set.


Technical support was provided by Andrew Hunt, John Henderson and Stephen Sandilands. Thanks to Darrell Reeves, Geoff Dancer, Keryn Henderson and Karen Borchardt who helped with the setup and take down, staffed the table and helped make it a good night.

Thanks to our generous sponsors, Morris Brothers Music Store and Trevor Gollagher Music.  We had plenty of lucky door prizes to give away. The winners were grinners. Louie was stoked to be taking away the major prize of a Cordoba ukulele.

Festive BUMS prize winners (Photo: Kaye Dort)

Next jam

The next big BUMS jam at Cooparoo will be held on Wednesday January 6. The same COVID-safe arrangements will apply, and you will need to book a ticket. There will be 50 seats again. Watch out for your email invitation.

Here’s John Low’s take on the recently resurrected Northside Jam. John gives an insight into how COVID restrictions have changed the way jams are run.

After six months or so in enforced recess, the inaugural BUMS 2020 Northside Jam involved fifty lucky ticket holders and a certain number of necessary BUMS volunteers. It was run at the Northern Suburbs Bowls Club, Wavell Heights, in the usual 7:00 to 9:00 pm timeslot.

Tickets were available two weeks prior to the event, with BUMS financial members getting the first chance to book their seat. All available tickets were gone by the end of the week.

Room upgrade

The jam was not held in the usual bar area, but in a larger room opposite the bar. This function room had two major advantages over the usual venue. It boasted a stage at one end of the room that allowed jam participants to see the set leaders, and have an unimpeded view of the screen. Secondly, it provided additional space to allow social distancing.

Management processes

Jo Kunde and her assistants handled the entry process well, with minimal delays, given the necessity of recording of attendees’ details imposed on us by our COVID-safe plan.

The jam itself started ten minutes late due to some delays in the setting up of the sound and recording equipment. There seemed to be a last-minute rush, and I felt concerned about the piles of instrument and microphone cables littering the area of the steps leading to the stage. Although people accessing the stage were urged not to traverse this area, some did, and it was indeed fortunate that nobody suffered a fall.

Jam sets

The first set was led by Spare Parts who, together with Caroline Haig for some of the songs, provided a Beatles set of familiar perennial favourites. They finished with the (non-Beatles) ‘Monster Mash’, adding a nice Halloween-feel to the evening. This first set lasted barely 30 minutes, and I personally would have liked to see a couple of extra songs in there.

At this stage I would congratulate John Henderson who did an excellent job of scrolling the music, video recording the performances while occasionally playing his ukulele – multi-tasking indeed.

The second set featured Hans and Rowena who gave their usual polished performance with a nice balance between Rowena’s vocals and ukulele and Hans on guitar. Yes, I know – an instrument from the dark side. But we ukulele players are a broad church. The songs provided a contrast between the familiar and the less well-known, and were enthusiastically received and played.

For the third set, featuring Andrew and Adrian, Adrian had his first outing on the ubass. Adrian is to be congratulated on his bass playing, and sometimes (by his own admission) ‘interpretations’ of a bass line.  Well done anyway, Adrian. As a struggling bass player myself, I know what a challenging time that can be.

Unfortunately, the acoustic balance provided by the sound system was less than satisfactory due to technical issues. But this failed to dampen the enthusiasm of the attendees as a first time out “smelling the flowers” of a springtime uke jam. Andrew’s energetic delivery was well-received.

Snapshots of the October 2020 Northside Jam

COVID-safe jams

This Northside Jam was an experiment in social distancing and holding COVID-safe public events – just to see how such events would go – with a view to opening up BUMS’ regular jam venues in the near future. Unfortunately, visuals and attendance requirements did not suit some, and those comments will be passed on to the management committee for future consideration in these changing times.

In summary, I would like to congratulate Peter Grace and his band of merry volunteers, in putting on a wonderful evening’s entertainment in a COVID-safe environment for ukulele players bereft of jams over the last few months.

Looking ahead

The room used at the Bowls Club was fit for purpose, with the raised stage area and its general layout, and should be retained for future jams at that venue.

However, I suggest those running future jams should ensure that:

  • system set-ups are done in a timely way to avoid a last-minute rush that delays starting times
  • sound checks are carried out with all performers (if possible) prior to the official start of the evening to ensure a balance between those on stage leading the jam, and those in the audience (for whom the jam has been organised after all), and that set leaders are aware they are leading a jam, and not entertaining an audience.
  • more attention be paid to covering or securing cables and leads in the performing area.

UPDATED 30 September 2021

BUMS Inc are keeping a close eye on the latest directives from Qld Health. We need your cooperation to ensure our jams are COVID-safe events. Due to the constantly changing directives we are going ahead with masked events when required as this seems to be the new ‘normal’.

Checking In and Contact Tracing

You are now required to check in to the venue where the jam is being held using the Check In Queensland App. Find out why, where to get it and how to use it here

Our friendly BUMS door greeters will also check you off the jam door list as you enter the room.


In line with Qld Health Roadmap to easing restrictions – Stage 2 and Restrictions for Impacted Areas (No. 18) Direction Brisbane is classified as a high-risk impacted area. BUMS Inc is holding events and jams with the following mask protocols.

  • Please wear your mask (unless you have a lawful reason not to) at all times when seated, playing, entering, exiting, chatting or moving around at the jam or venue.
  • Masks can only be removed when eating or drinking. You must be seated.
  • Please stay 1.5m apart where possible and use the hand sanitiser provided.
  • Set leaders will remove their mask while performing, and don when finished. Performers not singing will stay masked.

Please check in to Coorparoo Bowls Club using the Check In QLD app on entering downstairs, maintain social distancing and good hand hygiene; Above all please stay home if you feel unwell.

Additional health and safety measures that apply to our jams:

  • There is a limit on the number of people at a jam.
  • You must have a ticket to attend; available through Trybooking.
  • We keep a register of each ticket holder for contact tracing.
  • We manage a defined venue or space according to the latest directives.
  • You must be seated and maintain social distancing of 1.5m apart.
  • We control the flow of people moving in and out of the venue.

Check the latest guidelines from Queensland Health.

If you are playing with friends at home please stay safe and follow the latest guidelines. Face Masks- How to wear, use and change.


Jams in this new era of social distancing and keeping COVID-safe, are a bit different and we ask all of our community to please keep these rules in mind.
1. Please don’t come if you are unwell. LINK: What is COVID 19 and Keeping Our Community Safe
2. Numbers are limited and tickets are made available through TryBooking. If you come without a ticket it is likely you will not be able to participate in the jam.
3. There are clearly marked entry and exit to the venue. On entry, please sanitise your hands.
4. Check in at entrance with your ticket.
5. Wash your hands. Use your own hand sanitiser at the event or use that provided. Clean your ukulele and any other equipment you bring.
6. Chairs will be provided and will be 1.5m apart.
7. Please sit down throughout the jam. Please don’t move the chairs unless you are with a family member.
8. We may need to turn people away if too many turn up.
9. If we can’t manage the crowd, we may have to stop the event.
10. If the jam is outdoors we will tape off an area to define the COVID-safe zone.


Currently only Coorparoo, Westside, Ferny Grove and Northside jams are meeting.

There are NO beginner classes before any of the jams.

You MUST have a ticket to attend; once the venue capacity is reached there are no more tickets available however all jams have a waiting list so you can be contacted IF a ticket becomes available.

Coorparoo Jam – Coorparoo Bowls Club
Westside Jam – Rosemount Community Centre
Ferny Grove Jam – Ferny Grove Sports and Community Sports Club
Northside Jam – Northern Suburbs Bowls Club
Deception Bay Jam – Maota Fono- Samoan Meeting House 

Read more about what it took to plan our first COVID safe Jam in this post.

Related Links

What is COVID 19 and Keeping Our Community Safe

QR Code Tips

Trybooking Tips

If you have any other enquires about jams, QR codes or Trybooking please contact Jo Kunde via



Would you like to improve your ability to play ukulele and sing solo and with others?

Come jam with us …

BUMS is planning a jam leaders course designed to build performance confidence.  The aim of the program is to develop your skills so you can create and lead a set at a jam.  Playing at jams is a great stepping-stone to performing at a wider range of events.

The proposed program would run over 12 weeks  and require fortnightly attendance at six weekend workshops. You will be expected to complete practical and theoretical ‘homework’ between workshops. You will also be encouraged to collaborate with others to plan and lead a set.


The workshops will cover:

  • planning a set for a jam,
  • formatting songsheets using the BUMS standard format
  • basic singing skills
  • playing ukulele for jams
  • setting up and using PA equipment
  • lots of practice in playing in front of a small crowd.

Call for Expressions of Interest

BUMS is seeking expressions of interest from members who would like to join the program.  If we have enough interest, we can move to develop the program further.

We are also seeking expressions of interest from members with performance experience who are willing to present segments or mentor the participants during the twelve-week period.

If you are interested, please email your contact details and suburb to Peter Grace at by Sunday 6 September 2020.

Queensland Government Eases Restrictions in Stage 3- July 3 2020

We are all breathing a sigh of relief with the latest news from the Queensland Government which allows for further easing of the restrictions on business and on gatherings. READ the latest public health directions to stay COVID safe for Stage 3: Going out, travel, recreation and gathering in Queensland and Stage 3: Businesses, activities and undertakings

The key points are:

  • From midday 3 July 2020, you can gather in groups of up to 100 people in homes and public spaces.
  • You can travel anywhere in Queensland for any reason, except to remote communities (designated areas). There is no limit on distance. You can stay overnight anywhere in Queensland for as many nights as you like.

ALL physical distancing and health practices still to be followed:

  • staying at home if unwell
  • wash your hands regularly with soap and water, and use alcohol-based sanitiser
  • avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes
  • wherever possible keep at least 1.5 metres away, two big steps, from people you don’t live with.

All businesses can now:

  • have one person per 4 square metres on their premises.
  • businesses with a floor space less than 200 square metres can have one person per 2 square metres, up to 50 people at a time.

Your management committee along with BUMS jam leaders and our community band leaders have met (gotta love Zoom!) to discuss how BUMS Inc will manage our events as we transition out of our time apart. Out of this meeting came BUMS Inc COVID-19 Operating Guidelines for members.

What Stage 3 means to  the BUMS Community.

Your health and safety is our highest priority. We need to consider that many members fall into the high risk category, as well as what is required to maintain the social distancing, cleaning and disinfection protocols before we return to jams face to face.

As BUMS love to sing as we play there are further considerations. Singing is a very effective way of spreading COVID-19#. Consequently, in addition to the above rules and safety protocols, if there is to be singing, it is highly recommended that participants also:

  • not face each other when singing.
  • there must be 1.5m between each singer/player
  • Under Stage 3, singing is permitted with the same distancing requirements listed above ***

*** and extra info:  When and how can choirs sing again without becoming ‘super spreaders’?

BUMS Inc also recommends that if a spike in active cases occurs in South East Queensland, then face-to-face events should be cancelled immediately.

Many smaller groups have notified us that they have started to return to practise and jamming together. If this is happening at a venue like a pub or bowling club, it is expected that the venue will be following COVID safe practices. Please check with your venue what you need to do to stay compliant.

If you are hosting gatherings at your home or in public spaces (like parks) please review and follow the BUMS Inc COVID SAFE GUIDELINES V2  (updated 7 July).

In particular for activities and events, organisers should:

  • ensure attendees pre-register (name, address, e-mail and contact number).
  • maintain an attendance register of organisers, performers, presenters and attendees. Download a printable BUMS Inc Contact Tracing Register form.
  • hold events outdoors, if possible
  • ensure appropriate ventilation for indoor events, e.g. open windows and doors, or use air conditioning
  • provide hand sanitiser and encourage attendees to bring their own.

Please note: Contact information must be kept for volunteers and attendees for at least 56 days. This must include: Name, family name, address, and mobile or landline contact phone number.

In addition, attendees are encouraged to:

  • run the COVIDSafe app on their mobile phones. More info & download HERE
  • clean their hands, instruments and equipment before and after events
  • use only their own instruments, microphones, etc.
  • sanitise shared equipment (e.g. mixing desk, speakers & stands) before and after events.

Moving Forward

For as long as the Queensland Government COVID-19 public health rules apply, for each event or activity, the BUMS guidelines will be:

  • reviewed (and if necessary, updated) Last updated 7 July
  • displayed at all venues used for BUMS Inc activities and events
  • sent to attendees who have pre-registered.

Currently all of our jam leaders are in contact with our various venues to determine when BUMS Jams are welcome to return. We do not have any firm date yet when that will happen. Check the News & Events Page for the latest event information that we have received.

For the time being all official BUMS jams will continue to be streamed in our private members Facebook Group- BUMS Online. Find out how you can join HERE.

Thank you to all of our members for your patience and to all our busy BUMS community leaders who have shown amazing resilience, creativity and community spirit keeping us entertained and connected.

If you or a group you belong to are returning to meeting or rehearsing please email details to Jo Kunde via .

Adrian Board reviews our inaugural BUMS online jam. 

There’s positives to everything, even a pandemic.

Ok, nobody asked for the world we live in at the moment. But it’s not all bad.  For example, we couldn’t get together in person, so we ran an online jam.

First Time Round

At first it was weird. All we saw was Max speaking. I use the term ‘saw’ because we didn’t ‘hear’ him. That sent the tech monkeys into a scramble which resulted in success. Initially, I was a little sad because I miss everybody. That turned into relief when I started strumming and singing with my friends. I didn’t realise how much I needed a strum. For some reason, I have been a little on edge lately. I can’t imagine why. Anyway, it was awesome.

Actually, in some ways it was better than a physical jam. Let me explain. I didn’t have to line up at a bar, and could order any beverage I so desired. I could sledge both other audience members and the presenter via the chat window without fear of being in trouble for talking during a performance. Nobody needed to hang around to pack up the equipment and chairs. The performers could change costumes between songs. Ian Philips wasn’t wearing pants. The list goes on.

Future opportunities

In all seriousness, the online jam presents opportunities that physical jams don’t, in terms of both experiencing it as an audience person and a performer. In a live jam, you are distanced from the performer and cannot see what their hands are doing. It won’t be long before some of the performers realise that they can use the camera to their advantage and demo some strumming and plucking techniques, which will take the jam to the next level.

I thoroughly enjoyed the online jam and recommend it to all and sundry. I look forward to the next one. In the meantime, I wish everybody healthy families, finances, bodies and spirits.

At some point in time this will end and we will miss the online jams, but for now, we have an opportunity to enjoy them, so please take this opportunity while you can. These jams have been made just for you … yes you. Now smile at the love being shared and pick up your uke, it’s time to practice.

BUMS Inc Online Jams

With the success of our inaugural BUMS online jam, more are planned. The BUMS Online Big Uke Jam are streamed fortnightly in the private Facebook Group BUMS Online – Brisbane Ukulele Musicians Society (BUMS) Members. To be accepted you MUST be a member of BUMS Inc. Find out how you can get FREE membership until 30 June 2020.

BUMS will be streaming jams on Wednesday 29 April (get an extra one as there’s five Wednesdays in April!), 6 May and 20 May. If restrictions stay in place, then 3 and 17 June.


It is with much regret that I am announcing all jams and band practices for April and May are cancelled.

In line with the Federal Government’s health and safety guidelines to mitigate the spread of Covid 19, your BUMS committee have made this decision to protect all our members. Of course these cancellations will be reviewed regularly in line with the latest recommendations.

The BUMS committee are putting their creative minds together to create some fun online events for you even though we can’t be together at jams. Stay tuned for those announcements soon!

We wish any of you dealing with health concerns a quick recovery. To those who are self-isolating, here is an opportunity to learn that new style, strum or song which you never could find the time to do.

We are so lucky in the ukulele community to have so many who generously create tutorials, song arrangements and create online events. I ask you to please support your music community and teachers, perhaps this is a great time to take a lesson via Skype, or an online course you’ve may have put off.

Keep on strumming,

David Pedler

BUMS Inc President

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