View Full Version : If you play both re-entrant and linear

Joyful Uke
04-02-2018, 10:42 AM
Just curious. If you play both re-entrant and linear, do you prefer to have one ukulele set up low g and another set up high g, so you don't need to swap out strings? If so, do you tend to have 2 of the same instrument, or do you use 2 different instruments, (one tenor and one concert, for example, or one Pono and one Kamaka, as a different example?)

Right now, I am fortunate enough to have more than one ukulele, so I don't need to swap out strings, but they have different necks, so sometimes I have to remind my fingers which ukulele they are playing. That makes me wonder if people prefer 2 of the same ukulele instead.

I do enjoy having different ukuleles to suit my mood, though!

04-02-2018, 11:44 AM
I do have more than one ukulele........a few more than one. All my tenors are low G, my preferred sound. I have a mix of super concert, concert and sopranos in reentrant. It can be a bit of a challenge moving back and forth between all these instruments. There are also baritones in the mix which is a different animal altogether. But I enjoy all the different sounds so it is worth it

04-02-2018, 11:45 AM
My Pono PC Tenor is linear, my Kala SMHC is reentrant.
When the Outdoor Soprano gets here, we'll see what it likes!

04-02-2018, 12:15 PM
I have one uke that I could not bond with it.
Downupdave (not super_Dave BTW I like your screen name) has been bugging me to change it to low G but I kept fighting him for over a year. I finally gave in few months ago. What a difference it made.

Yes each uke has it's own voice. Not all are good in Low G and not all are meant for high G.
It all depend on the wood tone. In another word, do not give up or sell the uke. You will be amazed how a different set of strings or tuning can make a world of different. I am so glad I still own that uke.

Uke Don
04-02-2018, 12:17 PM
You will likely only swap strings once or twice (ask me how I know). Every time you take a nylon or fluorocarbon string off it does it's best to revert to the original length, so you will spend a lot of time retuning that string until it settles again. No fun at all.

Pete F
04-02-2018, 12:38 PM
I keep one tenor semi-perminant low-g (spruce) and another more suited to high-g (koa). I'm not overly keen on the sound of low-g per-se, just that it suits the spruce, and my playing ability at the moment. It is a pleasure, and a luxury to have both options. I find Fremont Solist low-g, a happy medium between a thudding flourocarbon, and a squeaking wound string - actually like the squeak, just that they seem to go thread-bare quickly on me!?

04-02-2018, 12:42 PM
Sopranos and concerts:
high G (one soprano ADF#B actually) (including concert banjo uke)

Fluke - low G,
Brueko tuned DGBE (high D),
6 string high G, hi/lo C, hi/lo A,
8 string - hi/lo G, CEA all in unison,
Risa solid Uke'Ellie dGBE like the Brueko.

Baritone: low D

Mulitiple ukes give mulitiple tuning options. Unlike steel strung guitars, it's generally not a good idea to keep retuning ukes as the strings will need time to settle and will eventually weaken and break. (I found that out by experience)

04-02-2018, 02:28 PM
I have 2 different ukuleles that I use the most: one soprano high GCEA and the tiny tenor Low GCEA. I use them differently so that determines when I play them. The way I prefer to play my TT is as an accompaniment to a baritone ukulele someone else plays. I use the soprano if I am the only one playing or for composing. There's no rules about that but that's how it has worked out so far for me. Using the soprano to accompany the baritone uke has been sort of *meh* for me.
Are you playing your uke solo or with others?

Since my ukes are different scales I do need to practice and warm up on the ukes I intend to perform with. No practicing on the TT if I am performing on the soprano or vice versa! That leads to disaster as I found out rather quickly.

Croaky Keith
04-02-2018, 10:33 PM
One bari DGBE, another dGBE, & a tenor DGBE, two laminate electro acoustic concert & a long neck soprano are re entrant for strumming, all the others low G for picking & occasionally strumming. :)

04-03-2018, 03:15 AM
I have two concert Fleas, one is high g, one is low g, they both have upgraded fretboards and tuners. I play them both daily. I find this easier than when I went back and forth between a Flea and a Pono.

04-03-2018, 04:13 AM
I don't play low G, but I think that changing out the one string would be a supper pain in the rear. I mean, there are a lot of people who won't even play their ukulele if it isn't sitting out and in reach. I'm thinking that changing strings to play one or the other would be a much greater inconvenience than opening up a case.

Jim Yates
04-03-2018, 07:46 PM
I have one linear uke, a tenor with a cedar top. The rest of my ukes are re-entrant tuned. It depends entirely on what I am playing whether I prefer linear or re-entrant. A few tunes, Pete Seeger's Living In The Country, for instance, are finger-picked and some of the melody comes from the high G string. This can't be played on my low G uke. Likewise, clawhammer ukulele requires a high G string.
If I'm playing a single string melody like Red Haired Boy or Blackberry Blossom, I need those low notes on the 4th string, so I use my linear tune uke. Some finger-style tunes sound nice on a low G uke as well.
If I'm strumming chords, I like the close voicings of a high G ukulele.
My friend, Reg, and I get together on Tuesdays to work out ukulele duets and lately we've been playing an old ragtime tune called St. Louis Tickle. I learned it on guitar when I was a kid from a Dave Van Ronk record and when we do it on ukes, it takes a low G uke for the bass line and a high G uke for the melody line.

Jim Yates
04-03-2018, 07:50 PM
I sometimes like to tune my low G uke to GCEG and play it using a slide. I have a nice light ceramic slide that seems to work well on the uke. I also use it on the banjo tuned gDGBD, relatively the same tuning, but in G instead of C.

04-03-2018, 08:36 PM
Definately separate ukes for low and high-five G.

I only play low G when I need to low notes for a particular melodi. If I should change strings for that, they wouldnt have settled in before I moved back to high-g.

I have a low G tenor and a high g concert, that I play regularly.

04-04-2018, 12:04 AM
I have 1 set to low and 1 set to high... I have a lot of guitars in different tunings though... Lol

04-04-2018, 01:30 AM
I bought low G strings on a whim and had no idea which of my three ukes it would go on. I have a Fender, Oscar Schmidt and Ibanez all tenors. On my Fender, I noticed that the G string nut had a much wider dip than the original G string. I was pleasantly surprised Fender allows for either string set without having to file anything down. My OS and Ibanez would require filing the nut so the low G string would fit without buzzing. And it actually turned out quite well as the Fender sounds awesome strung in low G. I have an Enya tenor coming this week and I already ordered some Low G Lava strings just in case. Definitely take your time deciding which uke to set at low G and once you do, you'll have a blast. Some songs sound absolutely amazing in Low G.

04-04-2018, 02:58 AM
Most here would have more than one ukulele, so having dedicated ukes for high & Low G is probably the most practical approach. Generally I'll find which instrument is best suited to which tuning and go from there, some instruments are not well suited to high g and vise versa, so it's best to do some testing to determine which way go. :D
I agree with Campbell, and tend to keep each either reentrant or linear.

04-04-2018, 03:25 AM
Forgot to mention what I play on my low g Flea. The music of Daniel Ho! I love his music and thankfully, he sells tabs of it. I've got 6 out of 13 songs from Polani done (poorly).

If you're not familiar with his playing, check him out on Youtube. He's amazing. And I think all of his music is for low g.

04-04-2018, 03:26 AM
Right now I have a KoAloha concert strung up for low G and 4 other ukes (two sopranos, a concert, and a tenor) strung up re-entrant.

I generally use the linear tuning when I want to play a specific repertoire... there is a good portion of ukulele cannon that requires it. Right now I am tacking some Daniel Ho and Lyle Ritz arrangements. Re-entrant just won't do for those.

If I am strumming chords or just noodling around, I am more prone to grab one of the re-entrants. For some reason the low G seems to drone on and detract from my auditory experience in those scenarios.

04-04-2018, 03:29 AM
Forgot to mention what I play on my low g Flea. The music of Daniel Ho! I love his music and thankfully, he sells tabs of it. I've got 6 out of 13 songs from Polani done (poorly).

If you're not familiar with his playing, check him out on Youtube. He's amazing. And I think all of his music is for low g.

:cheers:Cheers, TobyDog! I am playing a bit of Daniel Ho as well! I just had to learn "Hana Mālie" as soon as I got myself strung up linear.

04-04-2018, 04:33 AM
:cheers:Cheers, TobyDog! I am playing a bit of Daniel Ho as well! I just had to learn "Hana Mālie" as soon as I got myself strung up linear.

I like that one, too! Last night I played nothing but Pule Nahenahe (Soft Prayer). It's really pretty and not that difficult. I'd love to see Daniel Ho in concert, but he doesn't seem to come to the East coast.

10-30-2018, 05:47 AM
I keep one tenor at Low-G, and my others re-entrant. Low G is not my go-to sound, but I like it for jazzy chords and bossa. The Low-G is a solid mahogany Lanakai, that I originally had trouble bonding with. We're old pals now.

Uncle Rod Higuchi
10-30-2018, 06:56 AM
I do enjoy my low G Concert for slower, more wistful and romantic songs of yesteryear (30s, 40s, 50s )
most recently I've been singing 'Faraway Places' in 3/4 slowly :)
I enjoy the more mellow sounds of a low G on those types of songs.

for brighter, louder songs I prefer my reentrant Sopranos and Longneck Sopranos.

just reporting what I do.

keep uke'in',

10-30-2018, 09:10 AM
My first uke was a Mahogany Tenor which I have strung linear and I find it fits pretty much all purposes. But as I tried different ukes in stores I also wanted a re-entrant, so now have a KoAloha Concert with re-entrant strings. Though I started using this mainly for strumming 20s song I now also use it more and more for picking. It sure is great to have both handy.

11-01-2018, 01:13 PM
For me, it depends on the uke. Of my 2 koa tenors, one I switch back and forth periodically because it seems happy with both. The other doesn't seem right with a high G, but sounds SO sweet and mellow with a low. I also try a lot of different string materials with my ukes until I find what they are most happy with. Low G Worth Browns for the CB semi-custom, high G clear for the other. The Recording King reso sounds horrible with fluorocarbon and tends not to sound right high G, but sings with Aquila Carbonblacks (now re-done by Martin) and a low G Aquila red. The Mya Moe I switch back and forth high G and low. I have enough ukes to switch out, so am not bothered by stretch time.

Jim Yates
11-02-2018, 05:13 AM
I sometimes like to tune my low G uke to GCEG and play it using a slide. I have a nice light ceramic slide that seems to work well on the uke. I also use it on the banjo tuned gDGBD, relatively the same tuning, but in G instead of C.

Since writing this I have put a low G on my reso-uke and it sounds good played with a slide in GCEG tuning.
Since the only low G string our local store had was an Aquila Red series, that's what I used. I bought the set, but so far have just swapped out the G string.

11-02-2018, 11:47 AM
All of my sopranos are high g, the concert is low G and I just got a T1K strung high g so I could have tenors strung high and low. Might have to get another concert now.

11-02-2018, 12:14 PM
My concert is re-entrant.....my tenor is low G......usually both are withing an arms reach so easy to switch if I want to.

11-02-2018, 06:49 PM
I prefer high G and I like sopranos so that’s an easy fit.

But having recently started into MaxUke with Peter Luongo, we are required to play low G and either tenor or concert size so, aw shucks, I had to ask my favourite luthier to make me another uke...hahaha...

11-03-2018, 01:35 AM
I string both ways. Always have. I primarily play long-neck tenors and I purchased them with the intention of dedicating each one to one tuning or the other.

My Kamaka has a spruce sound board and it is intended to be brighter and it is strung high G

My Yorkie (that's what I call my Rob Collins custom that was made in West Yorkshire) has a London plane sound board and it is low G to get all the warmth I can from it.

I greatly prefer Low G because I primarily play finger style and linear tuning gives me more options.

11-03-2018, 04:55 AM
My Pono tenor that I play most of the time is low g, the Kala Tenor is high G. I find to helpful, as the educational videos seem to be high g on this site. Some music is written for high g as well.

11-04-2018, 01:38 AM
Soprano tuned machete open g
Concert in c reentrant
Tenor in c reentrant (two)
Tenor in c linear
Baritone in c linear—I use this primarily for Renaissance guitar pieces
Baritone Nui in g linear that sounds SO sweet...