Ukulele Video Lesson 
"While You See A Chance"
(Steve Winwood)

This ukulele video lesson might just be the best way to learn how to play “While You See a Chance” by Steven Winwood. Not only is the song a lot of fun to play, but the message contained in the song hits home for almost everyone, of every age. It also showcases exactly why Steve Winwood was such a powerful force in bands like Traffic and Blind Faith. While it might not be as rocking as some other songs of its time, “While You See a Chance” is an excellent addition to your musical repertoire.

This ukulele video lesson is taking you back to the 80's!

The song “While You See a Chance” was actually Winwood’s first hit as a solo performer after leaving Traffic. It debuted back in 1980, and was one of the most popular tunes on “Arc of a Diver”, the album Winwood co-wrote with lyricist Will Jennings. The album also contained several other great songs, like “Dust”, and “Night Train”, as well as “Spanish Dancer”. Interestingly, this was Winwood’s only Top 40 hit until 1986, when he and Jennings once again teamed up to write “Higher Love”. 

The message of “While You See a Chance” is evident in the title itself. The point of the song is that everything is all on you – your happiness, success and enjoyment of life does not depend on anyone else. The fact is that if you wait for someone else to bring that into your life, or you wait for something to happen that tells you “now you’ve made it”, it will never happen. 

As Jennings explains about the song, “It’s all on you. There’s an old English expression that says, ‘Fake it till you make it.’ If you don’t have romance in your life, meaning in the broader sense, really, something to make life interesting, just imagine it until it’s there.” By using a ukulele video lesson to learn “While You See a Chance”, you’re doing exactly that.

Steve Winwood played all the instruments on the song, as well as the rest of the album. There’s an amusing anecdote about how “While You See a Chance” finally came to be that ties into this fact. While mixing the song, Winwood accidentally erased part of the drum track. He was never able to recreate that part, so eventually left it out and restructured the song into what we know today.

Winwood’s solo career was marked by considerable success, even though his Top 40 hits were relatively few and far between. He managed to chart in both the US and the UK (where he lives) with several songs, as well as several entire albums. He also toured North America several times with the likes of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, as well as Rod Stewart. His last solo album was released in 2009 (a live compilation playing with Eric Clapton), but he has continued doing session work with bands like Gov’t Mule, and artists like Miranda Lambert and Slash.

It’s natural to be a bit leery of learning new material, particularly a rock song adapted for the uke. However, as you’ll see in the ukulele video lesson, “While You See a Chance” is actually relatively simple to learn how to play in its adapted version. The trick is to take it slow, and master one part at a time. Eventually, you’ll be comfortable enough to play the entire thing through.

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