Expensive Ukulele

Two years ago, the convention (mentioned in the previous post) was held in Nashville, TN.  When I finished my sessions I went downtown to find a music store.  Found just one — Gruhn’s Guitars beside the Ryman Auditorium.  Gruhn’s  was filled with gems — both new and old ukuleles.

Took this picture, which, at high resolution is now my desktop background.  I held this ukulele, but was afraid I’d drop it. I put it back on the black velvet and took its picture.

People who visit my office ask about the expensive guitar on my computer screen. I acquaint them with the concept of a ukulele.  Inevitably they comment — something so small with such a big price tag.

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2 Responses to Expensive Ukulele

  1. Ron Hale says:

    Wisdom on matters ukulele (or on any matter, for that matter) often comes from civilians, as those on the outside looking in have an objective perspective that insiders do not possess. It’s those on the outside that can spot bubbles building that those on the inside see as perfectly normal, safe conditions (and then dismiss the opinions of outsiders as uninformed). It seems that the admonition that something is happening & you don’t know what it is should, more often than not, really be addressed by outsiders to those on the inside, rather than vice versa. So the comments from your office visitors hit the nail on the head with a zen sort of directness, & my sympathies are in complete accord.

    And just what is included in the concept of a ukulele? If you acquaint your wise visitors with the notion that we all hear early on, that the ukulele is fun, then they’ll just look even more askance (and rightly so) at the image on your screen. If you continue your briefing with the reality that the early fun found on the instrument often devolves into deadly serious obsessions with practice (Only 7,368.9 hours to go!), with strings (Aquilas! Worths! Sunrise, ten paces…), woods (solid, laminated, top, sides, neck, koa, spruce, mahogany… ad infinitum, ad nauseam);
    well, you could go on much longer, of course, but you’ll have lost them by now. Not having long association with
    like-minded sorts, they just can’t comprehend the end-of-the-world importance attached to matters uke such as these.

    Now, play something for them. On your less-than-$3,400. ever-faithful Flea. No need to make it gently weep, they don’t care. No zany costume, please. How many of them asked about strings, woods, technique; it’s just music to them. As it should be to us.

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