A Short History of the Ukulele

Quite a few misconceptions and myths have come out about the ukulele, so let’s set the record straight once and for all. No, it’s not just a small guitar for kids. And it’s not even a Hawaiian invention at all. Here are the real facts about the history of the ukulele that you should know:

  • In 1879, the ship Ravenscrag arrived in Honolulu, Hawaii with immigrants from Madeira, Portugal. Most of these workers were set to work in the sugar plantations, as the local population wasn’t enough. This ship also brought 3 woodworkers (Manuel Nunes, Augusto Dias, and Jose do Espirito Santo) who celebrated their successful voyage and would later open their own wood shops.

What Makes for a Good Mandolin?

Here are the main factors you need to consider if you want to get a “good” mandolin. 

When you’re buying a mandolin for the first time, you have to decide which type of mandolin you want to use. Usually this depends a lot on the type of music you want to play. Each type of mandolin comes with its own special traits, so you can’t really say that one type is better than the other. It’s simply a matter of preference.

Still, you can check out several signs that indicate whether a mandolin is great or not. It’s not all about the appearance, as some “eye candy” models may not sound right or are too difficult to play properly. It’s not always about the price either. 

What is a Mandolin?

Discover the history of the mandolin, and know more about its place in today’s music world. 

If you play the mandolin, it can get a bit trying when people mistake it for something else. Don’t let it aggravate you, though. You just have to accept that people may often mistake it for a ukulele, popular in Hawaii, or a banjo. So what is a mandolin exactly?

Essentially, it’s a lute instrument which means it’s a stringed guitar-like instrument with a neck and you need to pluck the strings. It’s hollow like a guitar and it has 4 pairs of steel strings (wires). To strum it you’ll need a hard plastic pick. Nowadays, there are two kinds of mandolins: the more traditional Neapolitan style with the very rounded back, and the modern Orville Gibson archtop design that’s based on the violin design.

Origins of the Mandolin

What Makes A Good Ukulele?

During my vacation in Hawaii and falling in love with a new passion of mine, I did some research on what makes a ukulele good. I came across some good information and had the opportunity to compare quality ukuleles against the lower rated quality ones.

Before you pick out a good ukulele, you should realize the use for it first. If you are just a beginner and are going to just be learning on the uke, a top notch uke probably wouldn’t be the best to start off with. If you are seasoned, whether or not you will be using the ukulele to perform may contribute to what type of uke you would go with. Also, playing style should also be considered when choosing your ukulele. If you are going to be singing with your uke, that should be considered as well.

In other words, what makes a good ukulele is subjective to the person who is going to be using it. What may be a good ukulele for one person may be not so good for another. That’s because there are different aspects on the uke that should be considered and can be a load of difference to the player.

Here are some aspects to consider when picking out a uke:

The Passion For Ukuleles

With my love and passion for building custom mandolins, I found my second passion. It’s still a stringed instrument, but a particular one at that. It is the ukulele.

The first time I came across a ukulele was when me and my family took a vacation in Hawaii. We stayed at a beautiful beach villa in Ko Olina. We went to a Hawaiian luau and they performed beautiful music with the ukulele. I was intrigued by the sound and music that was being made by it. Of course the mystical hula dances hypnotized me as well, but I was so focused on the music of the ukulele. I loved it.

There were several shops around the Ko Olina Resort and they happened to have a ukulele shop that I luckily came across. I was like a child that found a new toy in a toy store. I asked the salesperson everything that I could about the instrument, but he wasn’t the best of help as he was new.

I admired

What is a Carver Mandolin?

Carver is a brand name of Mandolin. It is made out of the Pacific Northwest and is made from the finest of quality and with top-notch craftsmanship.

Each Carver Mandolin is handmade using a selective variety of woods to maintain its quality, sturdiness, beauty, and provide that foundational mandolin sound.

The Carver Mandolin company was established in 1999. Each mandolin and mandola is handcrafted by Chris Standridge to exacting quality. You may request custom build mandolins to certain specifications to meet your needs in both sound and aesthetics.

Carver Mandolins & Ukuleles

Welcome to Carver Mandolins & Ukuleles a one stop shop and online resource for mandolins and ukuleles.

We’ve been making mandolins for years for musicians world-wide making that bluegrass vibe. Just recently we’ve adopted the craft of handmade quality ukuleles.

Just like the sounds that they make, come here for a one-of-a-kind mandolin and ukulele resource!