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View Full Version : Do you have a name for your uke(s)?



byjimini
05-21-2011, 12:44 AM
I can't get into this habit; I read about BB King and I think it sounds awesome, but I just don't view my ukes as having their own souls etc, well at least not yet. To me they're just beautiful pieces of wood that make a lovely sound.


No guitarist is more wedded to his instrument than the reigning Monarch of the Blues, B.B. King. As the man himself tells it, in 1949 he was playing a ‘Chitlin Circuit’ dancehall in Arkansas when the heater upended and set the building on fire. In his haste to escape the flames, King left his beloved Gibson semi-hollow electric guitar inside.

Mortified at his potential loss, King ran back into the burning building and retrieved it. The next day he learned the fire was started by two men fighting over a woman named Lucille, so he named the guitar ‘Lucille’ to remember those mad moments when he risked his life to save it. He then vowed never again to run into a burning building or fight over women (some will argue these are two separate things, but they don’t understand the blues).

In 1968 King described Lucille with equal parts sacred devotion and dirty passion: “it loves to be petted and played with. There’s also a certain way you hold it, the certain noises it makes, the way it excites me … and Lucille don’t want to play anything but the blues … Lucille is real, when I play her it’s almost like hearing words, and of course, naturally I hear cries.”

joeybug
05-21-2011, 12:55 AM
Yup, Astrid, Lilo, Rhea, Hoa & Hope are my five, pics in my sig...

A friend told me to name them and I'm easily led

byjimini
05-21-2011, 01:04 AM
Very cool indeed. :)

rem50
05-21-2011, 01:06 AM
Mine already had names on their headstock! :)

Hippie Dribble
05-21-2011, 01:28 AM
nup. no naming ukes for me. I can't anthropomorphise instruments...mine are just known by what they are...Black Bear soprano, Mahalo soprano, Beansprout concert etc...but each to their own! I do love 'em, but not the way I love eugenie...he he :love:

joep
05-21-2011, 03:01 AM
Mine already had names on their headstock! :)

Exactly. Except for the kit built one. I call it, "the one I built".

Keyys
05-21-2011, 03:01 AM
I have names for my ukes.

My Ohana Tenor is called Luke...as in Luke the Uke
and my toy soprano is called Tigger.

Don't really think of them as having souls.

Hippie Dribble
05-21-2011, 03:05 AM
My Ohana Tenor is called Luke...as in Luke the Uke


Like it Keyys!

I have a pet sheep. His name is Jean Claude Van Lamb (I know, sorry... :o )

roxhum
05-21-2011, 03:17 AM
I have some great ideas for names... but can't quiet go there with my ukes. I don't' name cars either. Kind of want to but. Byjimini maybe if we named them that would give them a soul. I think if you played a uke for 20 years the relationship would change and you may actually infuse some soul into the uke. Ummm I think I just gave a beginning argument on why less may be more.

Kem
05-21-2011, 04:08 AM
I have names for a couple of them. My soprano has a peace dove on the headstock, so I think of it as the Peace Uke. My pineapple concert has the Chinese character for "happiness" on the headstock, so I think of it as the Joy Uke. I am still waiting for a Love Uke to come along.

Unfortunately, and ironically, the Peace Uke exploded yesterday. The bridge came unglued very suddenly and went hurtling violently across the room. I still haven't found the saddle. I am very sad. Perhaps I should try playing the Joy Uke. Ah well.

Manalishi
05-21-2011, 04:33 AM
My Pete Howlett Tenor is called My Pete Howlett Tenor...
and so on.I don't give names to inanimate objects however
beautiful they may be!

Plainsong
05-21-2011, 04:33 AM
I have names for a couple of them. My soprano has a peace dove on the headstock, so I think of it as the Peace Uke. My pineapple concert has the Chinese character for "happiness" on the headstock, so I think of it as the Joy Uke. I am still waiting for a Love Uke to come along.

Unfortunately, and ironically, the Peace Uke exploded yesterday. The bridge came unglued very suddenly and went hurtling violently across the room. I still haven't found the saddle. I am very sad. Perhaps I should try playing the Joy Uke. Ah well.

Ah man that sucks! I've had pins launch and put my eye out while tuning, but that's not the same thing.

The Kanile'a is Gaius because he has dreamy hair. The Kala archtop was Laura, but since like Laura, it died, I'm thinking of transfering that name to the Mighty Uke. It's matte black, so Laura would be fitting, because Blackbird might yet one day be taken by another uke perhaps. The Koaloha and Ohana don't have names yet.

But I still call the Kanilea the Kanilea because no one knows what I mean by Gaius.

Kem
05-21-2011, 04:40 AM
Ah man that sucks! I've had pins launch and put my eye out while tuning, but that's not the same thing.

The Kanile'a is Gaius because he has dreamy hair. The Kala archtop was Laura, but since like Laura, it died, I'm thinking of transfering that name to the Mighty Uke. It's matte black, so Laura would be fitting, because Blackbird might yet one day be taken by another uke perhaps. The Koaloha and Ohana don't have names yet.

But I still call the Kanilea the Kanilea because no one knows what I mean by Gaius.

Yes, I've never seen anything like it. I wasn't even playing the uke at the time. It just went KAPOW while it was leaning against the piano bench.

Gaius is a good name for anything at all.

Plainsong
05-21-2011, 04:55 AM
No more Mr. Nice Gaius!

OldePhart
05-21-2011, 05:01 AM
I've never seen the point in naming anything that can't come when I call it... LOL

ukeeku
05-21-2011, 07:07 AM
My pineapple in Bob, after sponge bob
My OU-2 is frank, he looks like a frank
My lanikai is curly, it is curly koa
My main guitar is laura, it reminds me of my friend laura with blode hair and she is really loud
my 20's banjo uke is Norman, it was written on the inside
I have named review ukes also, like the Martin S-1 is Marty, hmmm wonder why?
and the Kala travel I call big Jim, its ironic
and the ohana sopranino I call Mimster, since she first showed one to me.

I like to name them, I even put "Uke Name" on the case tags I hand out since so many people name their ukes

janeray1940
05-21-2011, 07:37 AM
I think there are two kinds of people in this world: those who anthropomorphize their possessions, and those who don't.

I generally don't, but I've referred to my two Kamaka concert ukes as "The Twins" on occasion.

byjimini
05-21-2011, 07:46 AM
I find it cute and think it's great that people name their instruments, but it's just not for mer. Who knows, maybe one day I'll see the light. :D

janeray1940
05-21-2011, 07:49 AM
I find it cute and think it's great that people name their instruments, but it's just not for mer. Who knows, maybe one day I'll see the light. :D

I find it rather charming, too, but it just doesn't come naturally to me. Maybe it's like naming pets - sometimes it takes a while for their true personality to show, and then suddenly you know exactly what the right name is.

byjimini
05-21-2011, 07:51 AM
That's a good point. :)

Plainsong
05-21-2011, 08:21 AM
I find it rather charming, too, but it just doesn't come naturally to me. Maybe it's like naming pets - sometimes it takes a while for their true personality to show, and then suddenly you know exactly what the right name is.

There's this reality show where the couple has this little black and white dog, a terrier of some sort, named Rocky. This dog's name is clearly NOT Rocky. His name is Pepper, and it is clear as day that his name is Pepper. He looks and acts like a Pepper.

If I get an Opel Cadet I'll name him Oliver.

zac987
05-21-2011, 08:49 AM
I don't name inanimate possessions either, lol. I refer to my banjo uke as "my banjo uke", my baritone as "my baritone", etc. Naming instruments just seems so forced to me.

Brad Bordessa
05-21-2011, 08:55 AM
I can't get into this habit; I read about BB King and I think it sounds awesome, but I just don't view my ukes as having their own souls etc, well at least not yet. To me they're just beautiful pieces of wood that make a lovely sound.

Well, BB's got a cool story. Not everybody gets to be so "hero".

I believe it's going to be hard to connect with a single instrument when you have many that are getting played. Let alone connecting with all of them. Of course you can just name them. But that seems like just picking out of a hat and doesn't have much meaning. All the pros I can think of who have named guitars have been attached to one instrument for a long time. Willie Nelson has "Trigger", Eric Johnson played "Virginia" in the 80s, Eric Clapton has "Blackie" (I think). There's got to be a connection. Like the pet thing - that's a good point.

That said, nope. Not a big fan of naming 'ukuleles.

They do have souls though. At least the handmade ones. Guaranteed.

mds725
05-21-2011, 06:09 PM
I can't anthropomorphise instruments....

You're not supposed to anthropomorphize inanimate objects. They don't like it.

SailQwest
05-21-2011, 06:16 PM
My first "real" uke was a Bushman Jenny that I called Jenny. That set the naming thing into action. My husband named his ukes to humor me.

smilerandomly
05-21-2011, 06:55 PM
Ive named my uke, which i havent even recived yet, because the name just fits. (Its named emma after my sister, who inspired me to my ukulele passion, and my gf, who seems to have such a btight ukulele personality. And no, they arent the same person. ;) ) I have a guitar that ive had almost a year thats nameless, just cause the right one hasnt stuck yet.

Kazz3lrath
05-21-2011, 08:32 PM
I am in the trend of naming them after characters from old westerns. My Ohana tenor is named "The Duke" after John Wayne. My luna soprano pineapple is named "Crazy Cora" because Quigley Down Under is an awesome movie. And it's clearly the female between my two ukes.


True Story.

Teek
05-21-2011, 08:54 PM
All of mine are just "The (insert name on headstock + shape/size/wood if necessary)".

Except for Honey, Buster and Tink. Wilbury was the traveling uke, and he traveled to another owner. The Halekoa has a name but I have to wait for it to tell me what it is. And Marisa the Risa, she came with that name already and the stickers to prove it.

I do name my cars, bikes and motorcycles because I had horses for 30 years, and they are sort of my draft horse, riding horse, and pony. My car's name is Bruce. My moto is Zen because it took some intuitive maintenance to get her running well. The bike is pearl yellow and metallic navy blue, her name is Hornet, for her colors and because she has stung me a few times.

byjimini
05-21-2011, 10:16 PM
Wilbury was the traveling uke

Excellent. :D

dkcrown
05-22-2011, 12:26 AM
All of mine are just "The (insert name on headstock + shape/size/wood if necessary)".

Except for Honey, Buster and Tink. Wilbury was the traveling uke, and he traveled to another owner. The Halekoa has a name but I have to wait for it to tell me what it is.

I do name my cars, bikes and motorcycles because I had horses for 30 years, and they are sort of my draft horse, riding horse, and pony. My car's name is Bruce. My moto is Zen because it took some intuitive maintenance to get her running well. The bike is pearl yellow and metallic navy blue, her name is Hornet, for her colors and because she has stung me a few times.

Great job with "Wilbury" Teek. I love it. My former travel uke was a concert surf flea, which I have since sold. Her name was Samantha Brown, named after the Travel Channel's globe trotter, because she we travel with me anywhere.

I name all of my ukes. Some after their builders (my MB is Chuckie and my William King is Willie,) but the rest have names that just come to me. Either after I have played them for a while, or sometimes when I first lay my eyes on them.

dnewton2
05-22-2011, 02:51 AM
Mine already had names on their headstock! :)

That's how I feel. My Moore Bettah has it's name in the sound hole though.

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 06:58 AM
I do love 'em, but not the way I love eugenie...he he :love:

Bwahahahahahahahah!!!!!

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 07:03 AM
You're not supposed to anthropomorphize inanimate objects. They don't like it.
BWAHAHAHAHAHHH. Oh my god, you guys are cracking me the hell up!!!

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 07:14 AM
Well, I have Pancho, a criminal-looking cowboy type no name soprano that I redid the finish on...and had to move the bridge....like a lot, and he still hasn't "straightened up". What can I say, he's an outlaw....
I also have Frank, a homemade uke...lol. You have to see pictures of this guy...Frankenstein is right. But, we MADE it! lol. (I guess I have a complex...I love it because I made it, but I never stopped to think if it was really the right thing to do...)
I also have KPK soprano that is lovely and amazing, and I just can't seem to find her name...I guess she doesn't have an overbearing personality like her siblings...
I have a Mahalo concert that I got on sale at a Hastings...lol His name is Richard. I call him Dick. Well, cause, well....Cause I do.

I have an issue with naming everything...My car's name is El' Tuco. (Its a 1995 turquoise green Geo tracker that has no air conditioning (stock! and I live in TEXAS) and matching green wheels, no lie....and baja blanket seat covers!) El Tuco means "the Ugly One" (you remeber the good the bad and the ugly...) Well, he's ugly, but I love him to DEATH He fits me PERFECTLY. On a side note, the word also means "dear to my heart" in Cherokee....
AND, I have a used flea soprano EN ROUTE to me as we speak, so I can't wait to find out if its a girl or a boy! lol

PereBourik
04-17-2013, 09:55 AM
Name my ukuleles and my bicycles too. They speak to me. Names came quickly to the ukes. The bikes took a little longer.

PereBourik
04-17-2013, 10:01 AM
I think that they might have names for me, too, and not very complimentary names at that, "Hamfist, Chord Butcher, Hey You."

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 10:02 AM
My bike is Trasher... :)

TaoJones1066
04-17-2013, 10:40 AM
I always tried to name my handguns, but never my musical instruments. I guess it comes from my nerd childhood. Everyone knows weapons had names like Mjolnir, Glamdring, Sting, and whatnot. I guess I should try and figure out a name for my Uke as it's my current weapon of choice.:D

Pundabaya
04-17-2013, 10:52 AM
I certainly call my ukes various things when I mess up on them.

RedBeth
04-17-2013, 11:15 AM
I think that they might have names for me, too, and not very complimentary names at that, "Hamfist, Chord Butcher, Hey You."
I'll have to listen closely next time I play my Uke to see if those names sneak out of it. BTW her name is Lulu, and all my instruments have names, because they all have their own voice. I like to know who I'm playing with. :o

TheOnlyUkeThatMatters
04-17-2013, 12:23 PM
I like naming my ukes, but I haven't come up with names for all of them. My favorite naming method to give each uke a name related to its home---my Harmony soprano, for example, is from Chicago, so it's named "Chester" after the great Chicagoan Chester Arthur Burnett, better known as Howlin' Wolf.

bborzell
04-17-2013, 12:35 PM
I've never seen the point in naming anything that can't come when I call it... LOL

Which is why I don't name my cats.

bborzell
04-17-2013, 12:39 PM
I had a dream about naming my new Outdoor Ukulele "Polly". Can't for the life of me figure out where the inspiration came from.

wayfarer75
04-17-2013, 01:03 PM
I've never named any of my instruments. It has never occurred to me.

Nickie
04-17-2013, 01:05 PM
"Ativan"...because it soothes so many hospice patients...
and I beleive it is growing a soul...

OldePhart
04-17-2013, 02:03 PM
When my ukuleles develop the ability to come when called, I'll start naming them...

(And I may have said something to that effect already in this thread, but that's what happens when old threads get resurrected. Besides, I have an excuse...I'm old...) :)

John

UkerDanno
04-17-2013, 02:13 PM
yeah, concert and soprano...;-D

OldePhart
04-17-2013, 02:26 PM
Which is why I don't name my cats.

Hah, haaa! Reminds me why I prefer dogs. They at least come when you call them, then drool all over your new shoes. :)

John

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 02:42 PM
Which is why I don't name my cats.

But We Name Babies....Maybe Ukes Just Need Time To Develop That Skill....
Believe.

Tifflery
04-17-2013, 02:51 PM
I had a dream about naming my new Outdoor Ukulele "Polly". Can't for the life of me figure out where the inspiration came from.
Polly-Carbonate Plastic...Seems Genius To Me!

The Orange Mage
04-17-2013, 03:16 PM
My Gibson Uke-1 is named Fred, after my grandfather who gave it to me.

My Kala KA-TEM is named....Tim.

My Pono MBD has no name yet.

grownupboy
04-18-2013, 12:32 AM
Thomas. My uke's name is Thomas.

Leigh Coates
04-18-2013, 05:52 AM
Hah, haaa! Reminds me why I prefer dogs. They at least come when you call them, then drool all over your new shoes. :)

JohnMy dog won't come when she's called; but I named her anyway. That way I can say "There goes Penny!"

Dan Uke
04-18-2013, 06:09 AM
MBU: Luciano
LFDM: Placido
Kamaka: Jose

PereBourik
04-18-2013, 06:19 AM
MBU: Luciano
LFDM: Placido
Kamaka: Jose

Hah! Named after singers. Mine too.

Manalishi
04-18-2013, 07:12 AM
Mine are 'The Pete Howlett Tenor'
'The Rob Collins Soprano'
'The Makala Dolphin Soprano'
'The Mahalo Soprano'
'The Countryman Banjo-Ukulele'
They came with makers names.Anything else
is just......up to the user!

UKEonomics
04-18-2013, 07:28 AM
You've gotta name your ukes! Here's my list...

Kamoa E3 Pineapple - "Mo Mo"
1950's Favilla soprano - "Flava Fav"
Slingerland banjo uke - "Slingy" my wife calls him "Jo Jo"
Lanikai LU-21C - "Lenny Kai"