As you gain expertise and better ears, you will begin to understand what kind of ukulele is best for you. But at first, locating the correct ukulele for your needs to be pretty overwhelming. This is especially true if you are new to the world of ukulele playing. But with that out of the way, let’s continue. Next, I will provide you with an easy method that will allow you to quickly narrow down your choices based on your personal preferences and desires. I call it my “12-Step Decision System,” and it works wonders.
First, ask yourself this question: “Do I want to play an acoustic guitar or an electric ukulele?” For many seasoned musicians, the ukulele is their instrument of choice because of its tonal versatility. Acoustic guitars have a tonal sound that can range from warm sounding to gritty. On the other hand, the electric ukulele sounds like an acoustic guitar with its electronic pickup system. Because of this tonal variation, some ukulele players prefer only to play an acoustic ukulele, while others play both.
Now, here is a list of three more types of musical instruments listed in my twelve-step decision process. The first category is “The Types of Music We Listen to,” or music that we listen to daily. Some examples are Jazz, Classical, or Old Time Radio Programs. For each type of category above, I have a short description of the instrument along with a quick quote (or two) from the “Acoustic Guitar Foundation Guide to Playing Ukele” by Mike McEvers.
The next category of musical instruments is “The Types of Musicians Who Play Them.” This includes all the professional performers that you see on TV or at live music concerts. These performers include Jazz Musicians such as Duke Ellington and Wayne Newton; Classic Musicians such as Joe Pass and Eric Clapton; Old Time Radio Program Musicians such as Herb Ellis and Micky Lewis; and Mobile or Portable Music Performers such as Mark King and Tommy Emmanuel. Finally, the category of “Other Non Academically Proficient Musicians” includes a wide variety including theater/stage actors such as Kevin Spacey and Edward Norton; voice-over artists such as Elton John and James Earl Jones; writers and public speakers such as Lance Armstrong; motivational or religious leaders; and more.
The third category of music that we will look at is “The Uses of a Ukulele.” This is used to describe any stringed instrument that requires fingering to pluck, strike, or tap. For our purposes here, a ukulele will be precisely what it says. A ukulele is played by plucking with a finger. Typically, strings of this type are nylon or a synthetic kind of string. The strings may be single-strained or multi-strained.
To choose your ukulele, first, decide what kind of sound you want. For most beginning players, the sound of a steel-stringed instrument is considered the sound to aspire to. However, many experienced players like to play a nylon-stringed ukulele because it produces a more mellow sound. This type of ukulele can be made of wood, including cypress, oak, and rosewood. You can also find a variety of colors for your ukulele. You may even be able to find one that is hand-painted by a professional artist!
After you have decided on the style of ukulele you like, the next step is to choose between oak or cypress for the body. A popular choice for many is the ukulele constructed from “Oshodi,” an Indian word that means “wind-wood.” A traditional oscar Schmidberger ukulele features a rosewood body made entirely of oak. In addition, some of the oscar Schmidberger ukulele designs feature tuners that are fashioned from rare sapphire crystals. The fine tuners add a unique aspect to this type of ukulele.
Regardless of what type of ukulele you prefer, it is essential to note that they are usually not cheap. However, as mentioned earlier, some manufacturers can provide quality ukulele at a fair price. For example, there is one particular manufacturer in the world that manufactures a ukulele that is constructed from a concert ukulele. To learn more about this unique product, “click here to read reviews and pricing on the Kala ka-15s.” If you are looking for a new ukulele, the one thing you need to keep in mind is that they are relatively expensive. Fortunately, if you purchase an affordable ukulele, you will be able to find a good quality one that has an excellent finish.