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View Full Version : Getting to Know You: New Uke Adjustment Period



Kem
07-31-2011, 05:08 AM
I have had this with almost every new ukulele I have ever encountered. Is it just me, or do others share this little piece of weirdness?

It goes something like this:

1) I buy a uke, either from a store or online. If it's from a store, I probably haven't played it for long; I get flustered when store owners hang over me and ask me how I'm doing. If it's from online, of course, I haven't played it at all, though I may have heard sound samples.

2) The uke arrives. I eagerly remove it from its packaging, tune it, and start to play.

3) I hate it. It doesn't sound anything like my other ukes. It's too soft/loud/harsh/tinkly/plunky. The intonation seems off at the first fret/second fret/all over. The action is too high. The action is too low; there's a buzz on the second string. The friction tuners are too fiddly. The uke sounds like my old doorbell. The uke sounds like a 100-year-old piano. The uke won't stay in tune. I have made a terrible, terrible mistake. Argh argh argh.

4) Over the course of the next few days, I get used to the uke, and it turns out that most of my problems with it were illusory; the others I can live with or fix. By Day 3 or so, I have fallen in love with the instrument and think it is awesome.

This has happened most recently with my Ohana SK-38. Considering the number of times this instrument has been rejected (I am its fifth owner), I really wanted to make it work, but I couldn't get used to how it sounded. Now, however, I have, and I am finding it hard to put down. I've noticed myself doing this with other musical instruments as well; I have the diametrical opposite of a honeymoon period with them. I start off by noticing all their little flaws, then eventually come to accept those flaws as quirks.

Is there something wrong with me?

SailingUke
07-31-2011, 05:21 AM
I believe this happens to most of us. Sometimes we think the uke opens up, but I really believe that we just learn our instrument.
Enjoy discovering your new uke's quirks.

joeybug
07-31-2011, 07:14 AM
You're not alone, it happens to me too :D

ukulefty
07-31-2011, 07:17 AM
I thoroughly tested my Bowley soprano down at Southern Ukulele Store for about an hour and I loved it from the minute I strummed my first few chords. There was no adjustment period with this one, I gelled with it straight away and I still love it now!




diametrical opposite

That's too big a phrase for me on a lazy Sunday afternoon! Hahaha!

Kem
07-31-2011, 07:19 AM
I thoroughly tested my Bowley soprano down at Southern Ukulele Store for about an hour and I loved it from the minute I strummed my first few chords. There was no adjustment period with this one, I gelled with it straight away and I still love it now!





That's too big a phrase for me on a lazy Sunday afternoon! Hahaha!

I'm an English prof, and I'm currently in the middle of marking. Go easy on me. At least I didn't start going on about cultural hegemony.

Kem
07-31-2011, 07:44 AM
I should clarify, since one of the previous Ohana owners thought I was dissatisfied with the instrument: I really like this ukulele. It's just that it took a day or so for the liking to kick in, and this made me think about the fact that I'm always doing this. I think the Ohana SK-38 is a great plunky little instrument, and even the Aquila strings have grown on me now. I shall not give it up! It's mine! My preeeeeeecioooooouusssssssssssss...

hmgberg
07-31-2011, 07:45 AM
I'm an English prof, and I'm currently in the middle of marking. Go easy on me. At least I didn't start going on about cultural hegemony.

I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts on cultural hegemony, particularly as they pertain to the ukulele.

blulegend
07-31-2011, 08:23 AM
PUPD: post ukulele purchase depression. We all get it. I'm sure the love at first sight phenomenon exists too though.