Just about every major guitar maker has produced a ukulele (often misspelled ukelele) at one time or another. Martin offered three ukulele models to its customers in 1918. The diminutive 12- and 17-fret instruments were followed in the 1920s by concert and tenor models, while the Martin 5-K from 1922, with its koa wood body and abalone inlay, is much in demand among collectors.
Gibson introduced its first ukulele in 1926. The highly collectible Uke-2 and Uke-3 styles from that year had mahogany bodies and rosewood fingerboards. Gibson also made tenor ukuleles (1927) and a baritone model (1961).
Today, ukuleles are experiencing a revival, thanks in no small part to the sustained popularity of the late Israel Kamakawiwo'ole’s ukulele medley of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and “What a Wonderful World,” which has provided the soundtrack for everything from films to TV commercials. Aspiring musicians, with perhaps more good intentions than natural talent, also love them, probably because they are just so darned easy to play.
Not surprisingly, a host of guitar makers have jumped on the uke bandwagon. National makes an entire line of resonator ukuleles, from steel-body models to maple and mahogany ones. Martin and Gibson continue to make ukuleles, as does a well-regarded boutique ukulele maker named Barking Dog.
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Bermudan ukulele star visits John Smith's Stadium to pay homage to countryman ...Huddersfield Examiner, May 22nd
He's flown thousands of miles to entertain but has taken the chance to celebrate a homegrown hero. Renowned Bermudan uke star Mike Hind has travelled 3,372 miles across the ocean to take to the main stage at the Grand Northern Ukulele Festival that is ...Read more
Canada Ukes festival promises four-stringed funToronto Star, May 21st
McNie hosts two ukulele workshops every week. A combination of traditional workshop, open mic and jam session, the events have taken off like Hawaiian wildfire. Along with fellow uke guru Douglas Cameron, McNie is now taking his successful weekly ...Read more
Grand Northern Ukulele Festival to return to Huddersfield this weekendHuddersfield Examiner, May 21st
And this year it will be even bigger than before with 39 performers taking to stages across the town on three days instead of two. Tickets have already almost all sold out for the not-for-profit event which was launched last year by ukulele enthusiast...Read more
Students drawn to ukulele program in Upper ArlingtonColumbus Dispatch, May 18th
The choice seemed fitting for members of the Windermere Ukulele Orchestra: After all, the Top 40 love song is marked by ukulele throughout. Jason Hudson, the founder of the ensemble and a third-grade teacher at Windermere Elementary School in Upper ...Read more
Midland to host Ontario's first ukulele festivalSimcoe.com, May 18th
“The ukulele phenomenon has been happening across Canada and the world,” said Midland native and Juno Award-nominated musician Douglas Cameron, the event's co-organizer. “It's really something that's accessible for people. Our aim is to bring this ...Read more
Voxel8 Designer 3D Prints an Incredible Electric Ukulele & You Can Too!3DPrint.com, May 7th
When it comes to playing music, I have no talent whatsoever, no matter what instrument it is. My level of experience ends at playing the “finger drums” on my desk while I listen to rock 'n' roll. To me, musicians are special people, people who have...Read more
Ukulele fest to rock Old Town LansingDetroit Free Press, May 2nd
Expect lots of performances, including headliners Stuart Fuchs and Victoria Vox; workshops on everything from ukulele care and songwriting to chord melody and left-hand technique; and a chance to see the world's largest playable ukulele, which is 13...Read more
Warren Buffett and his ukulele: The greatest hitsMarketWatch, April 30th
True, Buffett, who apparently learned to play the instrument in college, wasn't in tune. Nor was this his first time at the ukulele rodeo. Just a few weeks ago, he was belting it out at the new Nebraska Furniture Mart, a Berkshire-owned company. And...Read more