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 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