Who Are The Richwoods?

The Richwoods are mainly:

Dave Hopkins . . . . . tenor uke

Dan Whaley . . . . . concert uke

Tracey Osmond . . . . . concert uke


Danny O'Brien . . . . . baritone uke

Clive Pearman . . . . . cavaquinho

A brief biography:

December 2007
In an outrageous and, frankly, slightly irritating display of musical dexterity, Dan Whaley borrows Tracey Osmond's ukulele and learns to play it in five minutes.

Meanwhile, just down the road in Brighton, raconteur, wit, script-writer and wine-taster Dave Hopkins fails to add ‘acoustic country blues guitarist’ to a series of lies about his achievements and starts thinking about taking up another instrument to not learn to play properly.

Over in Hove, Tracey sits in her flat wondering when she’ll get her ukulele back off Dan. When she does, she vows to master that D7 chord.

January 2008
Dan orders a Richwood concert ukulele. Inspired by Dan’s can-do attitude and gripped by a rather childish Mine’s-Bigger-Than-Yours obsession, Dave promptly orders a Richwood tenor uke. Although Dan’s arrives first, Dave’s tenor uke really is bigger than his. Meanwhile, in Hove, that D7 is coming along a treat.

February 2008
Dan sends Dave a home-recorded ukulele tune via email. Dave attempts to come up with a lead line and discovers that he can’t play lead ukulele lines to save his life. So, to compensate, he starts emailing his own tunes to Dan at a frightening rate. Dan sends them back at an even more frightening rate complete with lead lines.

March 2008
Dan, Dave and Tracey start thinking about forming a ukulele group, along with fellow uke enthusiasts Danny O’Brien (baritone ukulele) and Clive Pearman (cavaquinho) and a host of other possible candidates. Dave, Dan, Danny and Clive rehearse together. Tracey doesn’t make it. She’s somewhere else, practising D7. They discover that playing cover versions doesn’t quite work. But the originals sound good. Possible band names are offered. These include Uke Hunt, The Dancing Fleas and The Bum-Faced Monkeys.

April 2008
Dan, Dave and Tracey rehearse together for the first time in Tracey's flat, surrounded by lava lamps. There's no alcohol or biscuits, but the tunes sound good. Dan can't stop dancing.

Two more rehearsals follow round at Dan’s in Burgess Hill and The Richwoods are finally born.