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View Full Version : Glyph Mezzo Soprano: 3.5 years in the making



GX9901
09-15-2010, 06:37 AM
What's up UU! I have not posted or even lurked around here for quite some time as I have been occupied by some other stuff. But my passion for the ukulele has never waned and I figure I would share with the UU community by posting about a ukulele I've been waiting on for literally three and a half years. It's a Glyph Mezzo Soprano I ordered in April of 2007.

As some of you know, Glyph have a very long waiting list and when I placed the order, I have been playing the ukulele for all of 2 months. I figured back then that by the time I received this ukulele, I'd be able to play it decently. I guess that was a big leap of faith but I'm glad to say that I'm still playing the ukulele today.

The Glyph started out much different than what it looked like today. Somewhere between year 1 and 2, I decided to make it kind of a homage to Jake Shimabukuro's Kamaka as I gained more knowledge about the ukulele and about what I liked in a ukulele. Along the way I acquired many custom built ukuleles in a long UAS run (just look at the craziness in my sig!), and although I've only have a limited time with the Glyph, I think it's safe to say that it ranks with the best ukuleles I have. I haven't had the urge to get more ukes for a while now and while I'm very excited about this new Glyph, I think I'm still safe from UAS for the time being. But as we all know, never say never...

Anyway, I'm posting a few pics below. If you've never seen my blog, check out the build process if you're interested here (http://gx9901ukes.blogspot.com/search/label/Glyph%20progress).

A few pics of the "Mini-Jake":
http://lh6.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TI-cqDveM7I/AAAAAAAABLQ/GGFuardIWlo/s640/DSC04112.JPG

http://lh4.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TI-dVvAO7qI/AAAAAAAABLg/XFZiRXV22UE/s640/DSC04114.JPG

http://lh4.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TI-dWGnQjyI/AAAAAAAABLo/U1Zk21h6GFA/s640/DSC04115.JPG

http://lh5.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TI-dWejY4cI/AAAAAAAABLw/XGALYC5Tbok/s640/DSC04116.JPG

dnewton2
09-15-2010, 06:51 AM
Very nice!!!! I like that little wave in the bridge.

Worth the wait?

GX9901
09-15-2010, 07:02 AM
Very nice!!!! I like that little wave in the bridge.

Worth the wait?

Yeah, I think it's worth the wait. With such a long wait time, you kind of order it and forget about it. So it wasn't like it was an agonizing wait. I'm very happy with how it turned out.

LoMa
09-15-2010, 07:29 AM
Wow GX9901, I am looking at your signature and see that you have some SERIOUS ukeage!

Whis is your favorite? Or can such a question even be asked?

GX9901's signature:
"Too many ukes!: William King koa/swiss spruce ls-tenor; William King ebony/adirondack ls-concert; Kamaka tenor; Kanile'a K-1 super tenor; Koa Works tenor; KoAloha Pineapple Sunday; Dasilva Santo repro; Aaron Taylor milo/spruce tenor; Kiwaya KTS-7; Kanile'a custom SS; Kepasa Gypsy Rose; Bluegrass cigar box tenor; Collings UC-1; Bushman cedartone baritone; Mainland slotted headstock mahogany concert; Ko'olau CE-1 Myrtle; Glyph Mezzo Soprano "Mini-Jake"

mm stan
09-15-2010, 08:02 AM
Aloha Gx9901,
Well welcome back, and I see you have an impressive arsenal of high end ukes...during your wait for your
fabulous Glyph soprano....I'm sure your other ukes kept you busy and I've used that same excuse for a
long awaited ukulele..when it arrives, I be in a better position to make full use of it's potential. With that
long of a wait, it's buying other ukes that keeps you sane and occupied..How is the Glyph compared to your
billy one and two?? thanks form sharing the story and the pic's...we hope to see you around more often now.
Until next time....MM Stan..

GX9901
09-15-2010, 08:19 AM
Wow GX9901, I am looking at your signature and see that you have some SERIOUS ukeage!

Whis is your favorite? Or can such a question even be asked?

GX9901's signature:
"Too many ukes!: William King koa/swiss spruce ls-tenor; William King ebony/adirondack ls-concert; Kamaka tenor; Kanile'a K-1 super tenor; Koa Works tenor; KoAloha Pineapple Sunday; Dasilva Santo repro; Aaron Taylor milo/spruce tenor; Kiwaya KTS-7; Kanile'a custom SS; Kepasa Gypsy Rose; Bluegrass cigar box tenor; Collings UC-1; Bushman cedartone baritone; Mainland slotted headstock mahogany concert; Ko'olau CE-1 Myrtle; Glyph Mezzo Soprano "Mini-Jake"

Well, before the arrival of this Glyph, my favorite was pretty clearly the Willing King ebony/spruce ls-concert. It's pretty early in my Glyph ownership so I can't really say where it'll rank in the long run. But I suspect it will be #1 or 1a along with the King. The two ukes really sound very different, so that's a good thing.

GX9901
09-15-2010, 08:24 AM
Aloha Gx9901,
Well welcome back, and I see you have an impressive arsenal of high end ukes...during your wait for your
fabulous Glyph soprano....I'm sure your other ukes kept you busy and I've used that same excuse for a
long awaited ukulele..when it arrives, I be in a better position to make full use of it's potential. With that
long of a wait, it's buying other ukes that keeps you sane and occupied..How is the Glyph compared to your
billy one and two?? thanks form sharing the story and the pic's...we hope to see you around more often now.
Until next time....MM Stan..

I think the Glyph is at the same level as far as sound goes. It actually sound a lot more like my King tenor than the King concert, but that King concert has a very unique sound to begin with. These customs ukes all feel very much "alive" in your hands as you play them. The Glyph looks a bit more "handmade" when compared with the Kings, probably because it has French Polish instead of gloss lacquer. As I've replied above, it's too early to say where this one will rank among my ukes, but I think it'll be near the top in the long run.

Pukulele Pete
09-15-2010, 08:35 AM
Hello GX9901, How do you like your Kiwaya kts-7 ? I have a kts-4 and have been thinking about a 7 but I've never seen one in person or heard how it sounds.
Can you give a quick review? What do you think of yours? Thanks. And what is a Mezzo soprano ? Half of a soprano? It looks like a concert size to me.

sukie
09-15-2010, 08:42 AM
George!!!!!!!!! I've been thinking about you.

Nice looking ukulele. Wait until I get my new one. It's gonna be (it already is) outstanding!!!!

Please come to uke club again. You are missed.

GX9901
09-15-2010, 08:43 AM
Hello GX9901, How do you like your Kiwaya kts-7 ? I have a kts-4 and have been thinking about a 7 but I've never seen one in person or heard how it sounds.
Can you give a quick review? What do you think of yours? Thanks. And what is a Mezzo soprano ? Half of a soprano? It looks like a concert size to me.

I like it quite a bit. I really don't play sopranos much and had thought about selling it but couldn't bring myself to do it because it's so nice. To me it sounds more like a concert sized ukulele rather than a Martin soprano (I used to have a style 1, and the KTS-7 sounds nothing like it). Here's a video of this ukulele in action that might be of a little bit of help (please excuse the ghetto playing): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6AZxh3G7pk

GX9901
09-15-2010, 08:46 AM
George!!!!!!!!! I've been thinking about you.

Nice looking ukulele. Wait until I get my new one. It's gonna be (it already is) outstanding!!!!

Please come to uke club again. You are missed.

Hey thanks Susan! I'd like to make it out to the club again, but it might be a while. 3 kids and a bunch of activities for them puts a bind on freetime. :p

sukie
09-15-2010, 08:48 AM
Hey thanks Susan! I'd like to make it out to the club again, but it might be a while. 3 kids and a bunch of activities for them puts a bind on freetime. :p
Three kids? You've been busy!

Ronnie Aloha
09-15-2010, 09:13 AM
Wow George! Finally! Its beautiful as expected. I hope you get your blog up and running again soon with your new addition. I loved reading it.

clayton56
09-15-2010, 10:49 AM
http://lh5.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TI-dWejY4cI/AAAAAAAABLw/XGALYC5Tbok/s640/DSC04116.JPG

ok, how do you hook the strings to the bridge?

GX9901
09-15-2010, 11:22 AM
ok, how do you hook the strings to the bridge?

This is a string-through design where you run the string into the bridge holes then pull it out of the sound hole and tie a knot so that the string doesn't come out of the bridge.

bt93
09-15-2010, 12:27 PM
congrats on the new uke. i miss reading your blog. it is one of my favorite uke blogs out there

SailQwest
09-15-2010, 12:34 PM
Very nice! You have a lovely collection!

Lexxy
09-15-2010, 12:39 PM
That Glyph uke is really really jawdropping. :O

Just checked out Glyph ukes, and they look magnificent as well.

Dominator
09-15-2010, 08:26 PM
Congrats on the new Glyph George. I too, have been thinking about you. Good to hear from you again. Any chance you will be able to make it to the Milwaukee fest?

Johnny Calzone
09-15-2010, 09:11 PM
Wow, that's a stunning design. I don't think I have seen a slotted headstock on a non-tenor before and always thought it had something to do with weight, string tension, balance and all that jazz. Guess I was wrong...

That picture of your collection has me in bitter envy. You're like the one kid in school who has all the video game consoles with heaps of games.

thejumpingflea
09-15-2010, 10:33 PM
Missing the blog updates. You helped feed the UAS addiction for me!

Congrats on the new uke. Video?

cocohonk
09-15-2010, 10:59 PM
Wow! It is stunning, is what it is. Congrats! Looking forward to a video too. :D

GX9901
09-16-2010, 04:45 AM
Missing the blog updates. You helped feed the UAS addiction for me!

Congrats on the new uke. Video?

Haha, do you really want to feed the UAS addiction? I'm happy to say that I'm still UAS-free at the moment, but it also means that it's hard to come up with stuff to post.

Video should be coming soon.:D

GX9901
09-16-2010, 04:51 AM
Congrats on the new Glyph George. I too, have been thinking about you. Good to hear from you again. Any chance you will be able to make it to the Milwaukee fest?

Thanks Dom! I wrote you back offline.

GX9901
09-16-2010, 04:55 AM
By the way, I took a couple of pictures of the Glyph with other ukes to show its relative size:

L to R: Soprano, Mezzo soprano, concert, long-scale concert
http://lh6.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TJGS8hzyYJI/AAAAAAAABNo/6MRQv9QTqEo/s800/DSC_2888.JPG

L to R: Mezzo soprano, super soprano
http://lh4.ggpht.com/_hMJKe0Vprf4/TJGS8Uvt2iI/AAAAAAAABNg/kyruOunx6Gc/s512/DSC_2889.JPG

Lexxy
09-16-2010, 05:15 AM
That Glyph...Oh my Glyph..

mikeg0232
09-16-2010, 06:41 AM
Absolutely stunning. I am going to have to spend some time reading your blog in detail. Great build process pics. You have any sound samples?

GX9901
09-21-2010, 05:02 PM
Finally got around to shooting a video with this ukulele:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eohg9JNEFRw

bt93
09-21-2010, 05:06 PM
such an amazing uke. you have a marvelous collection.

Ronnie Aloha
09-21-2010, 05:29 PM
Loved the video George. Is that fretboard wider than typical?

GX9901
09-21-2010, 05:59 PM
Loved the video George. Is that fretboard wider than typical?

Thanks Ronnie! It's 1.5" wide at the nut, which is my preferred width.

Lexxy
09-21-2010, 06:32 PM
Really nice uke + Really good player :)

pulelehua
09-21-2010, 10:53 PM
Nice petroglyph! I just ordered a custom and wanted a petroglyph, and so trolled through all sorts of samples. Almost went with the man, but he was a bit too asymmetrical. Looks great on yours though. I like the sort of waviness of the design from the headstock inlay to the fretboard. Great sense of flow.

mm stan
09-21-2010, 11:14 PM
Aloha George,
Good Job with the song!!!That uke sounds so sweet!! WOW!! so jealous..
so is she your favorite now??? MM Stan...

GX9901
09-22-2010, 04:44 AM
Nice petroglyph! I just ordered a custom and wanted a petroglyph, and so trolled through all sorts of samples. Almost went with the man, but he was a bit too asymmetrical. Looks great on yours though. I like the sort of waviness of the design from the headstock inlay to the fretboard. Great sense of flow.

Hey thanks! Yeah, I think the wave design turned out pretty nice. I had actually ordered the wave fretboard end on a previous custom but it was missed by the builder, so I added it to the Glyph plus the wave shaped bridge.

By the way the petroglyph is Glyph's logo, so I didn't actually pick it.

GX9901
09-22-2010, 04:45 AM
Aloha George,
Good Job with the song!!!That uke spounds so sweet!! WOW!! so jealous..
so is she your favorite now??? MM Stan...

Yeah, I'd have to say it's my favorite right now. But it's still in the honeymoon phase though, so we'll see how it stacks up down the road.

pulelehua
09-22-2010, 05:35 AM
By the way the petroglyph is Glyph's logo, so I didn't actually pick it.

Glad I didn't use it. Wouldn't have had the kanji, but still... not good to have one guy's custom disguised as someone else's.

JTY
09-22-2010, 06:12 AM
George, Congrats on the new Glyph. Looks like a real beauty. :drool: Also, thats a nice case, is that the std one that comes with it? Makes me want to dust off my Mezzo and start playing it again. I have Glyph Mango Mezzo #007. I have another Glyph pending start build date May 2011.. thinking I might go for a regular Koa Tenor this time. The Glyph is my favorite. , Joel

GX9901
09-22-2010, 07:15 AM
George, Congrats on the new Glyph. Looks like a real beauty. :drool: Also, thats a nice case, is that the std one that comes with it? Makes me want to dust off my Mezzo and start playing it again. I have Glyph Mango Mezzo #007. I have another Glyph pending start build date May 2011.. thinking I might go for a regular Koa Tenor this time. The Glyph is my favorite. , Joel

Hey Joel, nice to finally join you in the Glyph mezzo club. :D I guess the case is standard one that comes with it as I didn't ask for any particular case.

ukecantdothat
09-22-2010, 11:43 AM
Wow! Love the fret marker placement. Looks like a fredboard that "plays itself" if you know what I mean. Enjoy!

beardco
11-25-2010, 08:03 AM
Thanks for the video clip. Fantastic sound, & typical of the few glyph's I've heard. Hopefully Dave will open his waitlist again.

guitharsis
11-25-2010, 09:23 AM
Absolutely gorgeous. Don't know how I missed it the first time around. Great sound too!