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View Full Version : How To Devalue Your Line Of Instruments...Collings ukes at NAMM 2012



Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 02:20 PM
I'm still shaking my head after watching this...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnGC8KBRrsA

please don't let this put you off these makers. I've owned a couple of Collings ukes and, tonally and aesthetically they are amazing. I'm just dumbfounded at why Collings would get somebody to demo such a valuable instrument who can't actually do it justice?

Aldrine was very diplomatic off course, but the bitter aftertaste that really lingers here, is, if they have a demo guy showcasing 2000 dollar instruments who can't actually play, what is that saying about how seriously Collings are taking the ukulele as an inherently worthwhile and valuable instrument as opposed to just another bandwagon to have jumped on to up the profit margin???

OldePhart
01-28-2012, 02:59 PM
Aldrine should be congratulated for being able to say "beautiful" with a straight face after that guy "played" the ukes.

That is pretty sad. I know Collings has a great rep in guitars and mandolins, but that guy...well...I'll be polite and say maybe it was a bad day...a really, really bad day. LOL

John

garywj
01-28-2012, 03:04 PM
I have to admit, they were not well represented. However, I have a Collings and it is a great uke.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 03:05 PM
bad day alright brother. That was a 'demo'?...whew...sorry for the rant folks...starting to calm down a bit now but really, it's just the lonely cry of a frustrated Collings owner. I never had posted a 'dislike' on youtube before and never thought I would, but after a few hundred likes, that pushed me over the edge :o

austin1
01-28-2012, 03:20 PM
Aldrine was very diplomatic off course, but the bitter aftertaste that really lingers here, is, if they have a demo guy showcasing 2000 dollar instruments who can't actually play, what is that saying about how seriously Collings are taking the ukulele as an inherently worthwhile and valuable instrument as opposed to just another bandwagon to have jumped on to up the profit margin???

I imagine they must be taking it rather seriously, considering they're making two thousand dollar ukuleles, as opposed to twenty dollar ukuleles. If you want to up the profit margin, I don't think as a general rule you make ukes your average ukulele joe off the street can't actually afford. But then again, I know nothing about economics, so don't quote me on that.

itsme
01-28-2012, 03:22 PM
I'm just dumbfounded at why Collings would get somebody to demo such a valuable instrument who can't actually do it justice?

Aldrine was very diplomatic off course, but the bitter aftertaste that really lingers here, is, if they have a demo guy showcasing 2000 dollar instruments who can't actually play, what is that saying about how seriously Collings are taking the ukulele as an inherently worthwhile and valuable instrument as opposed to just another bandwagon to have jumped on to up the profit margin???
My take... the guy is a Collings employee. They primarily make guitars and mandolins, and probably not every employee can be expected to play uke with a lot of expertise beyond a few chords/strums.

Likely not every exhibitor there could afford to hire an outstanding uke player to demo their instruments when uke is only one of the lines they make. I remember when one vendor inquired here last year and hired Matt Dahlberg for their NAMM show. Then there's Ken Middleton for Ohana (even if he was unable to attend this year).

If I had been the Collings employee being interviewed and Aldrine asked to hear how it sounded, I would have happily said, "Hey, I'll hold the mic and let you play it, okay?" Or maybe he really didn't know who Aldrine was and what a fantastic player he is, thinking he's just some reporter from some ukulele site.

At any rate, I thought Aldrine handled the whole thing very graciously. :)

pcspud
01-28-2012, 03:25 PM
Google search ---- Bruce VanWart who is in this video was one of B Collings' first employees and has been assoc with Collings since 1989. Apparently chooses the woods used in the guitars and ukuleles

austin1
01-28-2012, 03:26 PM
My take... the guy is a Collings employee. They primarily make guitars and mandolins, and probably not every employee can be expected to play uke with a lot of expertise beyond a few chords/strums.

Likely not every exhibitor there could afford to hire an outstanding uke player to demo their instruments when uke is only one of the lines they make. I remember when one vendor inquired here last year and hired Matt Dahlberg for their NAMM show. Then there's Ken Middleton for Ohana (even if he was unable to attend this year).

If I had been the Collings employee being interviewed and Aldrine asked to hear how it sounded, I would have happily said, "Hey, I'll hold the mic and let you play it, okay?" Or maybe he really didn't know who Aldrine was and what a fantastic player he is, thinking he's just some reporter from some ukulele site.

At any rate, I thought Aldrine handled the whole thing very graciously. :)

What she said.

Nickie
01-28-2012, 03:35 PM
Agreed, Aldrine is one really sweet guy. I try to keep in mind that some of these luthiers are shut in a small dusty room all day, thinking about nothing but wood, glue, stain, and tools. They are creators and may not know, or care less who Aldrine, or Ken, or Jake, or James, or Lil' Rev are... but, I think they should be educated... it can only help the trade. He did a pretty good job of making that wonderful ukulele sound like a plastic piece of crap...

hmgberg
01-28-2012, 03:36 PM
Well, that was painful. I've played a few Collings ukuleles. I thought they were amazing. The video is an awful representation.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 03:53 PM
I imagine they must be taking it rather seriously, considering they're making two thousand dollar ukuleles, as opposed to twenty dollar ukuleles. If you want to up the profit margin, I don't think as a general rule you make ukes your average ukulele joe off the street can't actually afford. But then again, I know nothing about economics, so don't quote me on that.

I'm with you totally. Oh, and I know nothing of economics either. But these guys are an established boutique, high end guitar company and all I can add is that their custom ukuleles sell immediately they are produced and oftentimes sell before they're even finished. Demand for Collings ukes exceeds production speed at the moment. The market, as we all know, is widening at a rapid rate.

Guess the point I was trying to make was that, yeah, of course they take the business side seriously - they have more demand for their products (ukuleles) than they can meet. But when you get to the instrument show that is the most publicly exposed on the planet and they get a guy demoing their new ukes who can't even play, one questions the 'heart' behind it - if there is any at all. I mean, is there a genuine passion for the uke at Collings or are they firmly guitar heads who still look upon the uke as a bit of a joke.

Anyway, I'm rambling and probably too sensitive here...just had to give vent to my spleen after watching that embarrassing showcase of what are really wonderful instruments. Like always, I think I'm overthinking it maybe...but still interested to hear what others think.

itsme
01-28-2012, 03:57 PM
Google search ---- Bruce VanWart who is in this video was one of B Collings' first employees and has been assoc with Collings since 1989. Apparently chooses the woods used in the guitars and ukuleles
Okay, that basically just reinforces what I was thinking... he's not an uke player. But he doesn't have to be, anymore than the guy that designs and tunes high performance racing engines has to be able to drive a race car. :)

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 03:59 PM
My take... the guy is a Collings employee. They primarily make guitars and mandolins, and probably not every employee can be expected to play uke with a lot of expertise beyond a few chords/strums.

Likely not every exhibitor there could afford to hire an outstanding uke player to demo their instruments when uke is only one of the lines they make. I remember when one vendor inquired here last year and hired Matt Dahlberg for their NAMM show. Then there's Ken Middleton for Ohana (even if he was unable to attend this year).

If I had been the Collings employee being interviewed and Aldrine asked to hear how it sounded, I would have happily said, "Hey, I'll hold the mic and let you play it, okay?" Or maybe he really didn't know who Aldrine was and what a fantastic player he is, thinking he's just some reporter from some ukulele site.

At any rate, I thought Aldrine handled the whole thing very graciously. :)

itsme...totally agree with everything you said. And you said it very well. Aldrine was outstanding as ever.

Given demand exceeds supply with Collings custom ukes, they perhaps felt not the need to have a player there to demo for them

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 04:02 PM
Okay, that basically just reinforces what I was thinking... he's not an uke player. But he doesn't have to be, anymore than the guy that designs and tunes high performance racing engines has to be able to drive a race car. :)

but don't you agree that it's a bad look? I'd want a driver demoing a car I was going to buy, to get an idea of how it runs, not someone who doesn't even have 'L' plates he he :)

jackwhale
01-28-2012, 04:02 PM
Im a little surprised but not quite so offended The fellow was probably just working his shift at the booth (the show lasts four days) when Aldrine happened along with a camera and microphone. He's clearly not a salesman or schooled in marketing. If he was he would have found out Aldrine is a star in the ukulele world and would have tried to get Aldrine to endorse their new ukulele line.

Since he's a long time employee, I imagine that he plays a guitar pretty well so he just grabbed a guitar 'F' chord and moved up the neck...strum, strum,

Collings main business is guitars and this fellow is clearly a guitar guy rather than a uke guy.

OldePhart
01-28-2012, 04:03 PM
It's doubtless embarassing for Collings, and for the poor employee. I suspect this guy is more craftsman than musician and maybe Aldrine managed to come around when the rest of the Collings crew was off to lunch. I hope so, anyway. ;)

My favorite guitar store where I used to live had this guy who was an amazing setup tech on acoustic guitars - but he wasn't a musician! He'd learned to play just enough to make sure his setups were good and to do simple instrument demos for customers if he happened to be in the shop alone - but he didn't even pretend to play. I kind of got that impression from this guy in the video. He didn't really even hold the instrument the way even a real guitar player, let alone uke player, would. He also didn't seem to notice that the noise he was making was pretty awful - so I suspect he's probably just a talented woodworker who got stuck manning the booth while others were off having lunch or other fun. LOL

Still pretty dumb of Collings, but as others have mentioned, they're selling instruments faster than they can make them so they probably don't see it that way.

John

laundromatt
01-28-2012, 04:05 PM
I, for one, have no problems with any of this. Especially if it "devalues" their ukes to somewhere closer to where I can afford them. Though, given how great they are, I doubt that this will affect their prices very much.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 04:06 PM
It's doubtless embarassing for Collings, and for the poor employee. I suspect this guy is more craftsman than musician and maybe Aldrine managed to come around when the rest of the Collings crew was off to lunch. I hope so, anyway. ;)

Still pretty dumb of Collings, but as others have mentioned, they're selling instruments faster than they can make them so they probably don't see it that way.

John

not so John...Bruce does these demos of Collings ukes every year at NAMM!!! I felt the same when I watched last years as well...

like you guys said, he's a guitar tech and knows nothing of ukes apparently...just makes it all the weirder to me.. why? Why? Why?...... :confused:

Drew Bear
01-28-2012, 04:20 PM
Guess the point I was trying to make was that, yeah, of course they take the business side seriously - they have more demand for their products (ukuleles) than they can meet. But when you get to the instrument show that is the most publicly exposed on the planet and they get a guy demoing their new ukes who can't even play, one questions the 'heart' behind it - if there is any at all. I mean, is there a genuine passion for the uke at Collings...This is what I thought when I watched these videos as UU released them last week. One can only hope this was unfortunate timing and that they actually do have staff who could have demoed the uke properly. Maybe they were on break at the time Aldrine came around? [Edit: just saw Jon's comment about the same guy at the booth last year. Not good.]

But since I'm not a guitar fan who has long-held respect for some of these famous guitar companies now building ukes, my general reaction is that I'd rather buy ukes from people with more passion for the uke and a better connection with the uke community.

I wish the guitar companies all the best in growing the uke community by selling their ukes to guitar players, but I personally will stick to buying from builders focused on the ukulele. It's not like we lack choices.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 04:34 PM
I, for one, have no problems with any of this. Especially if it "devalues" their ukes to somewhere closer to where I can afford them. Though, given how great they are, I doubt that this will affect their prices very much.
ha! agreed Matt. Thread is poorly titled. Of course there's no actual 'devaluing' going on...but maybe the thread could have more accurately been titled:
"How To Make a $2000 uke sound like a $20 uke" or something... :p

1931jim
01-28-2012, 04:44 PM
ha! agreed Matt. Thread is poorly titled. Of course there's no actual 'devaluing' going on...but maybe the thread could have more accurately been titled:
"How To Make a $2000 uke sound like a $20 uke" or something... :p
I think Kimo Hussey could make a $20 uke sound like a $2000 uke.

dkcrown
01-28-2012, 05:07 PM
OK guys, I've got to chime in on this one. Bruce Van Wart has been with the company almost since its inception. He is not just an "employee", but one of the the most important people in the company. So what if he can't play the ukulele? I am sure that he was at the Collings booth to great dealers and their Reps. Namm is actually a trade show first and foremost, not a retail marketplace. I believe that last year was the first year that it was opened up to the general public. And I believe that it was just for one day.

I have met Bill Collings personally and guess what, he can't play that well either. He played my UT-1 at a talk he gave over a year ago, and attempted some finger picking. It wasn't pretty. If people that have been here long enough to remember the NAMM 2010 interviews, he struggled through his "sound sample" in his interview with Aldrine too. But does that mean that he and his company aren't serious about producing top quality ukuleles? They make about one a day because they care about the product and pay great attention to detail. Quality over quantity. I think anyone who has had the opportunity to play and inspect a Collings uke would agree with that.

SuzukHammer
01-28-2012, 05:38 PM
honestly, I smiled when I first saw the video and smiled even more after reading this thread and listening again.

I love my Collings. all 3 of them.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 05:48 PM
OK guys, I've got to chime in on this one. Bruce Van Wart has been with the company almost since its inception. He is not just an "employee", but one of the the most important people in the company. So what if he can't play the ukulele? I am sure that he was at the Collings booth to great dealers and their Reps. Namm is actually a trade show first and foremost, not a retail marketplace. I believe that last year was the first year that it was opened up to the general public. And I believe that it was just for one day.

I have met Bill Collings personally and guess what, he can't play that well either. He played my UT-1 at a talk he gave over a year ago, and attempted some finger picking. It wasn't pretty. If people that have been here long enough to remember the NAMM 2010 interviews, he struggled through his "sound sample" in his interview with Aldrine too. But does that mean that he and his company aren't serious about producing top quality ukuleles? They make about one a day because they care about the product and pay great attention to detail. Quality over quantity. I think anyone who has had the opportunity to play and inspect a Collings uke would agree with that.
all fair points Dana.

My intention was not to ridicule Bruce Van Wart, but just to voice my frustration at having such a wonderful line of instruments represented so poorly to the wider public through youtube, where the audience is nearly limitless and stretches far, far beyond dealers and fellow trade reps. As owners,we already know how great Collings ukes are, but those who don't and watch that clip (as some comments on youtube have already revealed) may feel otherwise which is disappointing.

Plainsong
01-28-2012, 05:57 PM
Defend it all you like, after all, what is the big deal in grand scheme of things anyway? We all know he can build!

....but a major brand like this would not showcase their guitars and mandolins in such a way, not on the floor of a major trade show, filmed for thousands more to see.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 06:12 PM
....but a major brand like this would not showcase their guitars and mandolins in such a way, not on the floor of a major trade show, filmed for thousands more to see.
yep Kim, that was the reason for my raising the original question about how 'seriously' Collings actually takes the uke as an instrument

Dan Uke
01-28-2012, 06:14 PM
Even if thousands watched it, would it sway them not to buy a Collings?

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 07:12 PM
Even if thousands watched it, would it sway them not to buy a Collings?

guess that's the whole point of the thread:

if you knew nothing of their instruments and had only that video demo and sound sample to go on, then no, you wouldn't buy one

Drew Bear
01-28-2012, 07:42 PM
Bill, Bruce and anyone else working at Collins may be great people. Their ukes are clearly great instruments. But this is just plain bad PR for no good reason. Do they really not have a single person on staff who could be spared to man their uke booth?

If they're making an average of one uke a day, you're talking about ~$1 million a year business. They can afford to hire any number of qualified uke players to demo their products for the week. It's clear they believe that they don't need to make that effort. As others have pointed out, the current demand far outpaces their production capacity.

Bottom line is these video interviews will be unlikely to hurt their business in the short term. But they actually do have pretty stiff competition at these price points. In the long term, videos like these will not do anything to help their business. Unnecessary and unwise. JMO.

mm stan
01-28-2012, 07:52 PM
Actually I was waiting for him to hand it to Adlrine to take a swipe at it..that would have cost them nothing in cost, but would have greatly helped in the video and marketing it...
I guess he wasn't really thinking about that..maybe next year he'll get it.....

GX9901
01-28-2012, 08:29 PM
The Collings uke does sound like a cheap tourist uke in that video. But I also think anyone basing their opinion off that particular demo probably should not be considering a Collings in the first place. This is not because I hold Collings up to some special pedestal (even though I do own one), but rather because I know better than to judge the quality of any ukulele solely on online videos.

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 08:38 PM
I know better than to judge the quality of any ukulele solely on online videos.
good point here George, thanks.

Maybe the other side of the coin is that for many, online videos and reviews are the only way in which one can decide upon such things....reasons of isolation / distance / lack of access to retailers etc I tend to agree with Drew who said it's just bad PR for no good reason. This is how I look at it - living where I do and being reliant on the internet - but there's no denying the truth of what you're saying either mate

Dan Uke
01-28-2012, 09:18 PM
Even if there were no stores around, I don't think most people would spend $1,000 on watching one video. I bet people read many reviews and/or watch videos about the next uke purchase, even if it was a Makala Dolphin.

raecarter
01-28-2012, 09:23 PM
I wonder how the man felt being asked to go to namm knowing that he would have to talk to people about the line and in all likelihood being asked to demo it knowing that he couldnt play it? I would have felt very nervous. I imagine I would have prepped a little and learnt Am F C and G?

Hippie Dribble
01-28-2012, 10:04 PM
I wonder how the man felt being asked to go to namm knowing that he would have to talk to people about the line and in all likelihood being asked to demo it knowing that he couldnt play it? I would have felt very nervous. I imagine I would have prepped a little and learnt Am F C and G?

he he...nice Rae :biglaugh:

experimentjon
01-28-2012, 10:40 PM
I have been watching videos from SHOT Show in Vegas and have learned that the person who is put in front of the camera representing the brand can do a lot of good or a lot of harm. Some hosts just know their gear and are very engaging on camera...others just not so much. I'm sure the Collings rep knows his stuff in other areas--but given that they knew this was an ukulele-focused interview, Collings would have been wiser to put someone who actually played ukulele in front of the camera.

I'm sure Collings makes a fine uke...but I can imagine that many people who don't know anything about the brand (the only time I've heard of it is from George's blog), would be turned off from them by the rep's performance.

Gwynedd
01-28-2012, 11:23 PM
OMG. That is so sad. A 2K instrument needs a 2K player, fersure. They are pretty but anyone watching Aldrine's vid would get no sense of the worth of this instrument.

Plainsong
01-29-2012, 12:19 AM
To me it's not so much that I should be a more educated consumer and know better... maybe because anyone who plays whatever instrument is going to know about what is going on in their community anyway.

Maybe it's more a matter of respect. A guitar/mandolin company would not go to a major trade show, and be filmed not knowing how to play. True, of course not everyone who builds can play and not all who can play can build. That's why musicians are hired. Common sense. What would happen if that had been a guitar? That's right, they wouldn't dare.

But since it was a uke, who cares, right? A matter of respect.

I don't intend to witchhunt the poor guy. His thing is picking wonderful tone woods and he knows his business. I just mean that if this was a guitar or mandolin, it would be handed to someone who could play it. The unintended message is that they don't care. We know Collings well enough to know that they DO care. The negative message is unintended, but there none-the-less.

tainauke
01-29-2012, 12:21 AM
Selling an instrument and making an instrument are 2 different jobs. Some people can do both, and I'm sure if that man had only talked about the specs of the ukuleles, then he would have "sold" them much better.
The unfortunate consequence is that if your looking to buy a $1000 + ukulele, you're hesitating with differents brands and you come accross this video, you may cross the Collings right off the bat which would be a shame, since it is highly regarded.
Many people do not have physical access to ukuleles or "good" ukuleles and rely on videos to make their choice. Thus, I must agree that this video on the long run, won't be good publicity for Collings, but fans will right the wrong I'm sure!

guitarman
01-29-2012, 12:45 AM
"I'm just dumbfounded at why Collings would get somebody to demo such a valuable instrument who can't actually do it justice"?

I understand what you mean. It just puzzles me that seeing something made with so much love and passion can be presented in such a plain and uninspired manner. They should "take notes" from the Kamoa booth.

arpie
01-29-2012, 12:51 AM
Oh Dear - shame that Aldrine didn't ask to 'have a go'!!?

My Theory - Anyone showcasing their stuff FOR SALE should always have it played/displayed to maximum advantage/effect to show off their good points - whether it is a uke or a yacht.

The Collings uke was NOT shown to advantage at all in that interview.

cheers

Roberta

byjimini
01-29-2012, 12:57 AM
Fantastic, such shortsightedness.

johntz
01-29-2012, 02:23 AM
The Collins Ukes are at the highest levels of build and sound quality period. That is why they get 2K+ for a Uke and people are waiting in line for them. The people who know what they are doing know what these Ukes are about. I would never buy a Uke from a sound sample on youtube but at the same time, this poor chap is a great builder but simply cannot play. I for one am glad that they are spending there money on building and designing instruments and not hiring people to demo them. All you need to know to check them out is a simple google search and you will find many youtube videos and reviews done by people who can really play like Jon and others who have Collins. I love my Collins, it is as perfect a Uke as I can imagine for me. The best I ever heard a Collins sound was at a California string store in Palo Alto where a guy off the street came in, picked up a UT1 and played stairway to heaven. Everyone in that store just stopped and simply stared at the guy. He was at the level of Jake and I am not over exagerating. He then simply walked out.

I really feel bad for the Collins guy. He should have said something like "I can strum it but really do not know how to play well, but you can get feel for it's sound". He probably did the best he could but Jon is right for the foks not in the scene, that clip didn't help but probably did not hurt Collins reputation either as someone who is looking at that level Uke will do their hoework and educate themselves before spedning that kind of money.

By the way that red dog hair finish is simply stunning, pictures do not do it justice. Congrats to Collins for their sucess and continued blessings to them for bringing such splended instruments to us.

dkcrown
01-29-2012, 02:52 AM
Here is a link to Aldrine's interview with Bill Collings from NAMM 2010. You can see that Bill himself didn't do his magnificent work of art any justice when he played it for Aldrine. http://ukuleleunderground.com/namm/2010/01/16/interview-with-bill-collings-of-collings-guitars/

And here is a link to the thread in 2010 in which MGM interviews Bill also. Maybe Collings should hire MGM to demo their ukuleles for them. If my memory serves me correct, MGM was so impressed with the uke , that he ended up taking that beautiful arch top home with him for his personal collection. (correct me if I am wrong Mike)

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?24891

austin1
01-29-2012, 03:06 AM
Guess the point I was trying to make was that, yeah, of course they take the business side seriously - they have more demand for their products (ukuleles) than they can meet. But when you get to the instrument show that is the most publicly exposed on the planet and they get a guy demoing their new ukes who can't even play, one questions the 'heart' behind it - if there is any at all. I mean, is there a genuine passion for the uke at Collings or are they firmly guitar heads who still look upon the uke as a bit of a joke.


How on earth can Collings consider their ukes "a bit of a joke?" Those ukes cost two thousand dollars. They are under no circumstances "joke" ukuleles. Collings ukuleles march into banks, take everything that moves hostage, steal everything including the free pens, let all the hostages go in a show of divine mercy, burn the building down just because they can, and never get caught by the police. Collings ukuleles turn water into wine just by asking politely. Collings ukuleles can breathe underwater. Collings ukuleles replant giant swathes of rainforest by hand, nurse the relocated baby sloths out of a bottle, and still have time to cure Tay-Sachs before tea time. What I'm trying to say is, Collings ukuleles do not mess around. So what if the guy isn't the most brilliant uke player on the planet? The ukuleles he makes are stunning, and sell out faster than they can make them. He doesn't need to sell the ukuleles, the ukuleles sell themselves. The heart is in the craftsmanship. But if you want to devalue their ukes, perhaps we should try lampooning the guy who makes them on a public forum, just so the company can see how much the ukulele community appreciates the amazing pieces of musical artwork they put out there.

austin1
01-29-2012, 03:18 AM
And on that note, since when have we ever discriminated against someone on the basis of their ukulele skills? When has UU ever told anyone they weren't "worthy" of playing the ukulele? How often do we tell the beginners in the beginner forum they shouldn't play the uke they have because they're simply not good enough, and why don't you go back to plunking away at your Makala Dolphin after lights-out until you get a bit better, and let the real players take over from here, hmm? It just seems a bit elitist and anti aloha-spirit to me.

austin1
01-29-2012, 03:25 AM
Then again, I haven't stepped inside the beginner forum for a few years now, it could be this is a frequent occurrence and I'm just behind the times.

Chopped Liver
01-29-2012, 03:54 AM
And on that note, since when have we ever discriminated against someone on the basis of their ukulele skills? When has UU ever told anyone they weren't "worthy" of playing the ukulele? How often do we tell the beginners in the beginner forum they shouldn't play the uke they have because they're simply not good enough, and why don't you go back to plunking away at your Makala Dolphin after lights-out until you get a bit better, and let the real players take over from here, hmm? It just seems a bit elitist and anti aloha-spirit to me.

As a beginner, thanks for this.

You know, the guy could be camera shy. Sometimes I freak when someone is listening to me play the piano. I can play well alone, but as soon as I know someone is around, I make a thousand mistakes. He also may or may not know Aldrine, but if he does know him, he may have been totally freaked out in being asked to play by THAT guy.

I sure would love to have that Koa one he showed off!

austin1
01-29-2012, 04:02 AM
As a beginner, thanks for this.

You know, the guy could be camera shy. Sometimes I freak when someone is listening to me play the piano. I can play well alone, but as soon as I know someone is around, I make a thousand mistakes. He also may or may not know Aldrine, but if he does know him, he may have been totally freaked out in being asked to play by THAT guy.

I sure would love to have that Koa one he showed off!

It's just...I don't know. Okay, anecdote.

The one and only time I ever met Aldrine, it was right after he had gotten his uke from Kanilea, and UU came all the way out to play a show in Baltimore. I'd been playing the ukulele for all of two months, had a starter Makala Concert, and left it at home that night because I was embarrassed to show up with it and play four chords in the presence of Aldrine, Aaron, and Ryan. The first thing Aldrine said to me was, "Where's your uke!" I said, "I didn't bring it because it's just a crappy little thing, I'm a total newbie who just started." His response was, "And? Here, play mine." I think he'd owned it for all of like three weeks at that point, but he let me, a complete beginner, pick out the first twelve notes of "Banana Pancakes" and then said, "Hey, that was really great!" when I handed his uke back to him. That really, really made an impression on me. Had he told me at some point "Sorry, you're not good enough to play these ukes, but maybe one day if you're lucky," it's quite a distinct possibility I would never have touched a uke again.

Plainsong
01-29-2012, 04:11 AM
And on that note, since when have we ever discriminated against someone on the basis of their ukulele skills? When has UU ever told anyone they weren't "worthy" of playing the ukulele? How often do we tell the beginners in the beginner forum they shouldn't play the uke they have because they're simply not good enough, and why don't you go back to plunking away at your Makala Dolphin after lights-out until you get a bit better, and let the real players take over from here, hmm? It just seems a bit elitist and anti aloha-spirit to me.

That would be anti-aloha, if anyone had said such things. We're just discussing the business aspect of it. No one has egged or TP'd this guy's house yet, have they? He's one hell of a builder, it's been said multiple times. He just seemed unenthused, unwilling to make a chord shape that works on any instrument, just kind of blah. NAMM's a hard show, and maybe not everyone is suited to be the sales guy. Colling_S (It's Collings guys, not Collins!) is a bigtime brand, imagine if they did that with their bigger even more well thought of guitars and mandolins. That's all we're saying.

So you can't pass a critical eye over a situation without being accused of anti-aloha? Come on!

It's an interesting case precisely because Collings ukes are so great, as all their instruments are, because they do care passionately about what they do, and this guy knows his business so well and is so talented as a builder. If it was just a case of the Fender guy last year, no one would think it interesting at all.

mketom
01-29-2012, 04:25 AM
If Aldrine Guerrero asked me to play him a tune, on camera, it would not sound nearly as good as this guy, but he COULD have tuned it a bit first...

kissing
01-29-2012, 05:12 AM
I think it's a huge shame that he did not even spend 10 minutes to learn how to make a half decent sound out of an uke. That's seriously all that would take to just play a C chord that sounds clear...

The playing in this video was beyond abominable.

vanflynn
01-29-2012, 05:28 AM
I guess I was more turned off by the Kumalae interview. Here they are trying to get into the ukulele market by buying an old K name and the guy calls one an entry level guitar! He know a few chords and fake a couple more before admitting he's not much of a player. You would thing that they could find some employees or friends that would be happy to sit and strum for them. Real bad first impression.

Dan Uke
01-29-2012, 06:09 AM
Here is a link to Aldrine's interview with Bill Collings from NAMM 2010. You can see that Bill himself didn't do his magnificent work of art any justice when he played it for Aldrine. http://ukuleleunderground.com/namm/2010/01/16/interview-with-bill-collings-of-collings-guitars/

And here is a link to the thread in 2010 in which MGM interviews Bill also. Maybe Collings should hire MGM to demo their ukuleles for them. If my memory serves me correct, MGM was so impressed with the uke , that he ended up taking that beautiful arch top home with him for his personal collection. (correct me if I am wrong Mike)

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?24891


I saw the 2010 interview and I get the impression that Mr. Collings had no idea who Aldrine was. Seconldy, Aldrine didn't do a good job interviewing him so overall, it was a boring interview. I bet booths get interview requests all the time and unless it's a big magazine or well known person, I'm sure the reps or the owners are polite but not too excited.

And as for asking Aldrine to play, how would he know who he is? Is "Aldrine" a household name? In the ukulele underground yes but outside? I remember the Brisbane Ukulele Festival asking him to play and then cancelled as they wanted "bigger" people. I don't think either interviews were so bad to the point that it would limit sales. I wonder who the reps are on Sundays, when they open it up to the public.

I remember reading someone getting excited that James Hills was at NAMM also some guy named Steven Vai...Talking about not knowing someone famous.

bdukes
01-29-2012, 06:20 AM
Maybe we're looking at this incorrectly. Perhaps Collings has actually done us a service by this video and demonstrated in no uncertain terms that it's not the uke, but the player. It showed me exactly what a expensive uke sounded like when I initially picked one up. It's the first vid in an anti-UAS marketing campaign. :)

Seriously though it may have been an unfortunate video, I see the rationale in Jon's original question. Clearly Collings' company soul is rooted in guitar and mandolin. Ukes are relatively new to their line. No argument that their ukes are awesome and Bill, Bruce and others at the company are excellent craftsmen. I had a koa tenor that was incredible. However, the tradeshow vids of Collings I've seen over the years, whether guitar or mandolin demos, usually feature an employee ripping the crap (a compliment) out of one of their featured instruments. And the uke demos always leave something to be desired. I would guess that'll change in time. Said before, missed marketing opportunity.

This thread also highlights just how rabid for uke and everything uke-related we are. When you do a search on YT for "namm Collings guitars" the overwhelming results come back uke-related. We're clearly a connected and savvy bunch when it comes to the power of Internet communications. It's still not second-nature for a lot of companies. I would loved for Aldrine to play all the ukes covered to get a sense of what they sound like in the hands of talent.

And yes, I think there is something to the nerves thing when someone like Aldrine asks you to play. If asked I would've probably seized up, flipped the uke and try to blow into it.

NatalieS
01-29-2012, 07:02 AM
Maybe I don't get it, but... I don't understand why people are getting upset about that video. I watched it when it was put on YouTube and thought, "Okay, that was a quick, very simple demo", but I was far from being offended or upset about it. So what if Collings didn't have a uke player there to demo at all times? The representative in the video was nice and well-spoken, and the instruments looked great as always, and that's all that mattered to me. I don't think *any* ukulele sounds its best at NAMM, when you've got tons of background noise and other instruments playing. Let's try not to give them such a hard time...

raecarter
01-29-2012, 09:17 AM
As a test I just showed my wife this video without telling her why. She started saying that looks beautiful then said oh it sounds awful. I think this proved a point to some extent

Hippie Dribble
01-29-2012, 09:30 AM
How on earth can Collings consider their ukes "a bit of a joke?" Those ukes cost two thousand dollars. They are under no circumstances "joke" ukuleles. Collings ukuleles march into banks, take everything that moves hostage, steal everything including the free pens, let all the hostages go in a show of divine mercy, burn the building down just because they can, and never get caught by the police. Collings ukuleles turn water into wine just by asking politely. Collings ukuleles can breathe underwater. Collings ukuleles replant giant swathes of rainforest by hand, nurse the relocated baby sloths out of a bottle, and still have time to cure Tay-Sachs before tea time. What I'm trying to say is, Collings ukuleles do not mess around. So what if the guy isn't the most brilliant uke player on the planet? The ukuleles he makes are stunning, and sell out faster than they can make them. He doesn't need to sell the ukuleles, the ukuleles sell themselves. The heart is in the craftsmanship. But if you want to devalue their ukes, perhaps we should try lampooning the guy who makes them on a public forum, just so the company can see how much the ukulele community appreciates the amazing pieces of musical artwork they put out there.
No one is lampooning the guy. No one is discriminating against him for not being a uke player. No one is saying a new uke player shouldn't play and love a quality instrument. It seems to me that, not for the first time, you're missing the entire point of a thread for the sake of wanting an argument and the desire to make a smart ass comment. Anti aloha? Elitist? Discriminating? You've got to be kidding. Just a by the way: the beginner board is a great place, you should check it out too. As someone still with lots of hunger for the instrument and stacks and stacks to learn, I find it awesome and really helpful.

Plainsong
01-29-2012, 09:36 AM
No one is lampooning the guy. No one is discriminating against him for not being a uke player. No one is saying a new uke player shouldn't play and love a quality instrument. It seems to me that, not for the first time, you're missing the entire point of a thread for the sake of wanting an argument and the desire to make a smart ass comment. Anti aloha? Elitist? Discriminating? You've got to be kidding. Just a by the way: the beginner board is a great place, you should check it out too. As someone still with lots of hunger for the instrument and stacks and stacks to learn, I find it awesome and really helpful.

Words are hard. ;)

Hippie Dribble
01-29-2012, 09:40 AM
How on earth can Collings consider their ukes "a bit of a joke?" Those ukes cost two thousand dollars. They are under no circumstances "joke" ukuleles. Collings ukuleles march into banks, take everything that moves hostage, steal everything including the free pens, let all the hostages go in a show of divine mercy, burn the building down just because they can, and never get caught by the police. Collings ukuleles turn water into wine just by asking politely. Collings ukuleles can breathe underwater. Collings ukuleles replant giant swathes of rainforest by hand, nurse the relocated baby sloths out of a bottle, and still have time to cure Tay-Sachs before tea time.
No, the clear inference was that, no they don't take their construction process lightly or view it as a joke, but the question was asked as to whether the movement, the instrument itself, is seen as inherently valuable or worthwhile by a company whose reputation has been built around guitars and mandolins. Clearly they have seen a market at that price point for ukuleles and moved in a big way, and I'm glad they did, as their ukes are amazing. Nothing Collings builds is a 'joke'

I am having them build me a custom uke right now...it has taken 3 months and is still not finished. Their attention to detail and craftsmanship is faultless, meticulous and almost without peer. I was musing upon whether a high end guitar maker actually has a heart for ukuleles when they present them in such a fashion as was seen on the video clip. Even just a cursory reading of that post within the context of that thread should have made that very clear.

AncientMatingCalls
01-29-2012, 09:49 AM
Im not all to surprised that the demo was poor. At least he spoke respectfully of the ukulele, unlike the gentlemen for Kumalae. I believe one of his ending statements was something to the effect of "Not everyone can afford an electric guitar or an acoustic guitar. These ukes are inexpensive and you can actually make music on one."

Just paraphrasing, but either way, you don't market to the ukulele community by suggesting that the reason to buy one is because you cant actually afford a guitar.

Hippie Dribble
01-29-2012, 09:51 AM
And on that note, since when have we ever discriminated against someone on the basis of their ukulele skills? When has UU ever told anyone they weren't "worthy" of playing the ukulele? How often do we tell the beginners in the beginner forum they shouldn't play the uke they have because they're simply not good enough, and why don't you go back to plunking away at your Makala Dolphin after lights-out until you get a bit better, and let the real players take over from here, hmm? It just seems a bit elitist and anti aloha-spirit to me.
I love my painted mahalos. I love my Collings. I love UKES. But really, though I won't make you pick up your makala dolphin, I would encourage you to have a nice warm cup of cocoa and take some deep breaths and think about whast you've actually written in this thread...the extreme way you have managed to personalise everything and turn it into an aggressive mean spirited debate when it was simply a discussion about motivations, business acumen and the way ukes are bought and sold as they relate to Collings. Thanks. It's ironic you should speak of 'anti aloha spirit' when it seems to me this is what feeds you.

That's it for me. Thankyou everyone for making this what it was hoped to be, an interesting discussion, some great points made worth further thought.

Drew Bear
01-29-2012, 10:16 AM
It's interesting that some people defending Collings' trade show policy are a bit...um...defensive. By all accounts they are a great company with a reputation for building excellent instruments for premium prices. Why skimp on representing your product in probably the biggest trade show in your industry? A YouTube vid may not seem significant, but this footage is now out there "forever". Defend it all you like, but that is not good.

I didn't sense that anyone was upset or angry at what the video shows. Mostly I sense puzzlement, maybe disappointment, but nothing to warrant such vehement backlash against a fair criticism.

Might be a good time for anyone "upset" to get off the computer and play their ukes for a while.

ricdoug
01-29-2012, 10:19 AM
Collings has never had an artist performing at their booth in past NAMM shows I've attended. They do, however, spend a lot of time talking with their music merchants. Hopefully Collings will take the feedback constructively and have ukulele artist demos, instead of not participating in interviews. Collings is known as a great maker of fine stringed instruments, so their reputation and owner reviews have been working fine for them. Ric

Plainsong
01-29-2012, 10:34 AM
All I'll say is that if this was a guitar or a mando, what those communities would say would be far far far worse than what any of us have said.

I don't think saying "Well at least they're not Kumulae" is a valid defense. The people using that name are just get rich quick idiots who care not one bit about quality instruments or where the instruments even came from. A far cry from Collings! What is there to say about the new Kumulae? We didn't expect great things and boy did they deliver! What a missed opportunity for them, but it doesn't have anything to do with Collings.

Kumulae has presented itself under false pretenses from the start, so we don't try to hold them up to some greater standard. It's expected and they're rightfully ignored. Collings, we do hold up a greater standard and I think they'd expect that! What would it say for them if we didn't expect greater presentation?

They weren't the only company to strum an out of tune uke, but they are the only one of the boutique brands to not seem to notice, care, or try to use any number of chord shapes that translate from guitar, to maybe say he's a builder not a player, here have a go. Certainly it was a bad day, and their ukes deserve better presentation.

Read that again, their ukes deserve better. The ukes whose tone woods were chosen by this guy, who had some hand in the process, deserve better. We're saying he did too good a job to let it slide like that. The criticism is constructive!

Paul December
01-29-2012, 10:36 AM
32961Honestly, Collings is such an unimportant player in the Uke market, I wouldn't care if they had a clown wearing big gloves demoing their stuff.

France
01-29-2012, 10:36 AM
He did a pretty good job of making that wonderful ukulele sound like a plastic piece of crap...

I second that. It sounded bloody atrocious for a two grand uke.

seneystretch
01-29-2012, 11:10 AM
[QUOTE=NatalieS;. I don't understand why people are getting upset about that video.

The only people who should be upset are the investors and luthiers.

The brand that I thought got shortchanged was Loprinzi. It wasn't even the language barrier, it was the staffer couldn't play the instrument and didn't know why she was there. And this has happened over multiple years.

This plays out badly at retail. I visited a shop that primarily repairs orchestral instruments and some folky guitars and dulcimers. I picked my Loprinzi ukulele off the wall, blew off the dust and tuned it. I liked it and started bargaining. The tag said $675, the clerk muttered something about me being the first in a year to touch it, and I walked out with a concert koa for $425.

The shopkeeper was relieved to have it off his books, I scored a great price, but the Loprinzi luthiery sure got hosed on its selling price. They need to get some videos out there showcasing the sound and maybe a couple of endorsed artists because it's as good as any K brand. Hard to make a decent living when your competitors can sell at twice your price. Without word of mouth you are competing based on price and that's no fun.

I thought Aldrine did a terrific job of interviewing, he has a nondirectional nonconfrontational style that is very informative. He lets his subject do their thing, good or bad. He is really skilled. That interview with Sam Bonnano of Komoa was just excellent. Would you rather have Matt Lauer or Bill O'Reilly, what has anybody ever learned from that style?

wickedwahine11
01-29-2012, 11:12 AM
Everyone, please play nice. We can agree to disagree with each other about the topic at hand without straying perilously close to the arena of sarcasm and put downs of fellow UU members for voicing differing opinions. Thank you.

mm stan
01-29-2012, 11:32 AM
How would collins compare with this unknown guy's very good looking ukuleles and his rock bottom prices..you can buy 5 of his for a collins...What do you think..http://www.wawixomukuleles.com/ and his ones look way better..:)

chrimess
01-29-2012, 11:41 AM
Hi Stan,
that is very interesting, thanks fr posting Willie has recently sold quite a few Kanileas on Ebay.



How would collins compare with this unknown guy's very good looking ukuleles and his rock bottom prices..you can buy 5 of his for a collins...What do you think..http://www.wawixomukuleles.com/ and his ones look way better..:)

cornfedgroove
01-29-2012, 11:48 AM
yeah, this was painful...I dont care about the playing as much as it was obvious he was either not accustomed to being in the public eye and speaking on the fly or that ukulele's are just not within his comfort zone. As a former professional speaker I'd like to volunteer my services in representing Collings free of charge. My one drawback is that I dont have a rockin' mustache, but I am sportin' a finger-lickin amish beard

Chopped Liver
01-29-2012, 11:53 AM
How would collins compare with this unknown guy's very good looking ukuleles and his rock bottom prices..you can buy 5 of his for a collins...What do you think..http://www.wawixomukuleles.com/ and his ones look way better..:)

WOW! Those are beauties! Have you played one? What's it sound like?

Choweet
01-29-2012, 12:34 PM
You think Aldrine had patience for this guy? Look at what his patience to the Kumulae guy. Seriously the guys running Kumulae right now are disgracing the name with the guy they sent at NAMM.

cornfedgroove
01-29-2012, 12:37 PM
You think Aldrine had patience for this guy? Look at what his patience to the Kumulae guy. Seriously the guys running Kumulae right now are disgracing the name with the guy they sent at NAMM.

lol, post that video

didgeridoo2
01-29-2012, 12:42 PM
While the thread title seems a bit extreme, it is a fair point. You see a beautifully made instrument at a showcase for instruments and you would expect a half decent demo of the actual sound. I do want to hear what that instrument is capable of, but I didn't get that opportunity.

Too bad Aldrine can't play all the ukes for demo, but maybe that's a conflict of interest with Kanilea...

TheOnlyUkeThatMatters
01-29-2012, 01:01 PM
Wow, wild thread. Let's try not to take each other's opinions on the topic personally, yeah?

As for the topic, that interview didn't bother me. It just reminded me of how wonderful Collings ukuleles are. Anyone willing to spend more than a grand on a concert or tenor uke owes it to themselves to consider a Collings. Find and play one, and you'll see. Or just re-read the comments of all the Collings owners in this thread.

Anyway, if I were shopping for $2,000 instrument, a video with mediocre sound quality of any player strumming for just a few seconds wouldn't have much impact on my decision.

Bill1
01-29-2012, 01:31 PM
This is an amazing thread and it shows where many uke players are at in the early part of 2012.
We have a very nice looking uke filmed, the sales person gave all the relevant details about price and materials and then had the audacity to strum a few rough chords. Now we get an eight page discussion about whether or not the maker should have Jake hanging around the booth in case someone comes along with a video camera.
Its a trade show, for the trade, anyone in the trade would probably get to play the uke themselves if they were going to sell it or distribute it for the maker. Normal punters don't get into the show, it is not a show to sell product to punters, it is a show to find retail outlets for products. They would not need to search YouTube to find a video. Perhaps if you watch the video from this perspective you would form a view that the sales person did exactly what is required to market the product successfully.
The availability of playable ukes with low purchase prices has made the uke very accessible to so many people and we have a big movement happening. One of the fun parts about the movement is that there is a focus on playing and joining in and many new players are not burdened with a need to know a lot of stuff, or be the worlds greatest player to be accepted. When a maker puts out a $2k product some would seem to think that the fun should disappear and revert to dumb expectations about playing skill and knowledge. I congratulate the fellow in the video, he was having a lot of fun with the ukes and did not care too much about his playing skills, like many other uke players who for the first time in their life can access an instrument that they can get a tune out of and that can help them get into a happening music scene. I hope that makers at NAMM never ever get to a point where they feel a need to keep a professional uke player on standby in case someone comes along with a video camera, I feel that would be totally against the current refreshing trends in the world of uke playing. It would be better if they found a group or club who know how to have fun and get them to sit around all day playing ukes and singing, with say lobster (or similar) for lunch and access to the high end ukes, I would be pleased to participate in this way if anyone would like to fund travel and accommodation from Perth for myself and a few others I know.

OldePhart
01-29-2012, 01:31 PM
I think Jon's original post had a very valid point that has kind of gotten lost, maybe. I think we all, including especially Jon, love the Collings ukes. His question was not if they care about what they build, but if they view the current uke craze as a passing fad not worthy of the marketing attention that they give to advancing their guitar and mandolin markets. Not that they don't give the ukulele instruments they build every bit as much attention to detail as they do their larger cousins, but that maybe they don't consider it a long-term "permanent" market.

I haven't seen comparisons with how they staff their booth and handle interviews for guitars and mandos, so I can't answer that question definitively. However, if, as I suspect, they do much better at featuring guitars and mandos at NAMM then the answer seems to be "yeah, they don't figure ukes are around for the long haul." In a way, can we blame them for that? We are currently in the middle of the third (or fourth, depending on how you categorize it) wave of ukulele popularity and, between waves, popularity dropped so low that almost all of the makers failed or, in the case of larger companys with other instrument lines, stopped building ukes. Is there really any reason for a relatively small outfit like Collings to assume it's going to be different this time?

That said, I do have to say that the video illustrates an extremely haphazard approach to marketing. Some have said, "Maybe he didn't know who Aldrine was." If you just Google "ukulele" Ukulele Underground comes up about halfway down the first page of results, and the summary mentions lessons by "Aldrine Guerrero, ukulele master." I'm in a different industry, but I can pretty much guarantee you that my company doesn't put anybody in a trade-show booth who isn't both very knoweldgeable about every one of our products and knows by name the major players in what would be our industry equivalent of the first several pages of Google results!

I guess the point is this...I pretty much think if Tommy Emmanuel, for instance, walked up and introduced himself they would know who he is. But, an Aldrine Guerrero or Jake or James Hill? Not so much; and, like it or not that does speak volumes about where their long term interests are. Or, at least, it leaves a rather bad impression about where their long term interests are in regards to the ukulele market.

Others have said that Collings doesn't need to market; that they already have waiting lists for their instruments. The same is true of their guitars and mandos. So, why go to NAMM at all? No, if you're going to go to the expense of supporting a booth at NAMM, for crying out loud, do it right!

Just my $0.02,
John

bynapkinart
01-29-2012, 05:36 PM
I didn't think this was bad...not nearly as bad as Kumalae, wow. Kumalae's attempt at reinventing the brand is going to get hosed.

Choweet
01-29-2012, 06:31 PM
lol, post that video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6aBWvejFrc

Seriously lol it's just terrible

Nickie
01-29-2012, 07:06 PM
How on earth can Collings consider their ukes "a bit of a joke?" Those ukes cost two thousand dollars. They are under no circumstances "joke" ukuleles. Collings ukuleles march into banks, take everything that moves hostage, steal everything including the free pens, let all the hostages go in a show of divine mercy, burn the building down just because they can, and never get caught by the police. Collings ukuleles turn water into wine just by asking politely. Collings ukuleles can breathe underwater. Collings ukuleles replant giant swathes of rainforest by hand, nurse the relocated baby sloths out of a bottle, and still have time to cure Tay-Sachs before tea time. What I'm trying to say is, Collings ukuleles do not mess around. So what if the guy isn't the most brilliant uke player on the planet? The ukuleles he makes are stunning, and sell out faster than they can make them. He doesn't need to sell the ukuleles, the ukuleles sell themselves. The heart is in the craftsmanship. But if you want to devalue their ukes, perhaps we should try lampooning the guy who makes them on a public forum, just so the company can see how much the ukulele community appreciates the amazing pieces of musical artwork they put out there.

Well don't I feel sheepish, put in my place, taken down a notch. I'm still a beginner, but I guarantee, if I even had a hint that the guy with the mike could play, I'd hand HIM the uke...

Hippie Dribble
01-29-2012, 07:31 PM
When a maker puts out a $2k product some would seem to think that the fun should disappear and revert to dumb expectations about playing skill and knowledge. I congratulate the fellow in the video, he was having a lot of fun with the ukes and did not care too much about his playing skills, like many other uke players who for the first time in their life can access an instrument that they can get a tune out of and that can help them get into a happening music scene.

gee Bill, I just don't know what to say to this post. Honestly mate, who has ever said on these forums - or in this thread even - that with an expensive instrument, the fun disappears and one should be highly skilled and knowledgable. I've never heard anyone say that..more often we encourage new players to buy the very best and that, NO, you don't have to be a great player to own and play a great instrument!!!! Aaarrrgghhhh...again, you've totally missed or ignored the entire point of the thread and degenerated into personal affronts which is really sad.

I really only learnt how to change strings a few months ago and still botch doing that! and have ZERO musical training or technical know - how. None. Nor am I a trained professional player. Mostly I play in a room or outside by myself. Do i still covet beautiful, expensive, great sounding ukes. You bet! I say again, read from the start - the point of this thread was not about taking down a guy for not being a good player...were that the case, no-one should have been able to seriously or honestly comment on this thread...we are all average joe's and all learning. The point was related to the marketing of the product. Geez

Anyway, at least a few of us have gotten our teeth into this thread...or each other...not sure which. :)But despite the disagreemant and misunderstandings, this is what it's about eh, sharing our passion for the uke, and that's gotta be a good thing ultimately

Plainsong
01-29-2012, 07:38 PM
It seems that a handful of those defending the demo are just about deliberately misunderstanding Eugene's posts. I don't really think its worth retyping words that won't be comprehended. Just go back and actually read the posts. Don't skim as your fingers quickly reach to reply. Words of attack, ridicule, and elitism are being put in his mouth as if he said them.

Drew Bear
01-29-2012, 07:44 PM
Aaarrrgghhhh...hehe...I feel for you, Bruddah Jon. I've a feeling this will just have to be one of those agree to disagree deals. Too bad it couldn't have been all done in an agreeable manner, but that's how it goes sometimes in cyberspace. You did a commendable job of keeping cool...most of the time. :) It's your thread, of course, but you may want to keep in mind that you can close it when you want.

Since you've got a custom on order from Collings, you may want to mention your concerns to them....after your uke is complete, of course. :cool:

didgeridoo2
01-29-2012, 07:50 PM
Don't sweat it, Jon. Those who are familiar with you know that you share nothing but joy when you post here. There are a lot of interesting posts and opinions in this thread. I especially like the question regarding what NAMM is really all about. Is it just a living catalogue where the instruments look shiny and the retailer should worry about what the showroom looks like? Maybe. But, I am sure that the manufacturers who agreed to speak with Aldrine about their product surely wanted to make an impression on the uke buying public. And for chrissakes, they are selling musical instruments! Not wall hangers. You don't have to play well, but at least look comfortable with the uke in your hands.

itsscottwilder
01-29-2012, 08:03 PM
I've just got one thing to add to this "lively" discussion.

I think many industries are struggling with the emergence of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

It's worse than the 24 hour news cycle.

There's not a single vendor at NAMM that is going to get any serious air time on the major TV networks. So they go to these industry events still under the illusion that that it's all "inside baseball" and there's no such thing as a PR mistake at these shows.

But Social Media makes it so that anything that's caught on video is recorded, tagged, shared and possibly gone viral in a matter of hours. Not days or weeks. While Collings has the reputation and order backlog to probably not have to worry about this video. This sort of poor demo video might be enough to put some smaller up and coming shops out of business.

Just my thoughts.

(Runs away before I get attacked)

Hippie Dribble
01-29-2012, 08:09 PM
hehe...I feel for you, Bruddah Jon. I've a feeling this will just have to be one of those agree to disagree deals. Too bad it couldn't have been all done in an agreeable manner, but that's how it goes sometimes in cyberspace. You did a commendable job of keeping cool...most of the time. :) It's your thread, of course, but you may want to keep in mind that you can close it when you want.

Since you've got a custom on order from Collings, you may want to mention your concerns to them....after your uke is complete, of course. :cool:

cheers Kim, Drew and Jeff. Honestly, several times today I wrote on the computer a plea for a moderator to close the thread, but then erased it before posting. I think after my angry replies to austin1 she at least deserves the right of reply, whatever that may entail. I perhaps would appreciate the thread being closed after that time as I think we've walked about as far as the road will take us. But I share you guys' interest in many of the points raised here.

oh, and Drew, you betcha, after it arrives would be a good time he he :)

raecarter
01-29-2012, 09:02 PM
How has a structured discussion turn into this? It was a valid constructive question about just one aspect of a company yet he has been vilified as something which he is not just because someone read more into his post and appears felt it was argument day.

consitter
01-29-2012, 10:55 PM
Workmanship is great, but playing sucked. Nuff said.

bongolele
01-29-2012, 11:32 PM
The best I ever heard a Collins sound was at a California string store in Palo Alto where a guy off the street came in, picked up a UT1 and played stairway to heaven. Everyone in that store just stopped and simply stared at the guy.
Why? Was he sitting under the 'no stairway to heaven' sign? ;)

If Collings wanted publicity, it looks like their strategy is working.

GX9901
01-30-2012, 04:38 AM
One thing I thought about with regards to this Collings "demo" is: what if that very same video was from Taylor instead? I mean, I actually own a Collings uke, so a crappy Youtube demo wouldn't really do anything to alter my perception of a Collings ukulele, but what if it someone did the same demo at Taylor with their new uke and it sounded just as crappy on Youtube? I think I would still withhold judgement until either after I got to play one myself or after some people who played one had commented on it. The reason is I think companies such as Collings and Taylor has built enough brand equity that you should have a hard time believing that their products could sound like complete garbage, and perhaps a Youtube video demo isn't representative of it. I mean, even with the bad playing on that Collings, maybe in person it didn't sound as bad as it did in the video (it would be enlightening if Aldrine could comment on this). Who knows?

Anyway, I don't think I'm defending Collings or anything (I like my Collings uke, but it's not among my favorites or anything), but the bad demo just didn't strike me as something that's damaging to the Collings name. (the Kumalae interview, on the other hand...)

ukeykondo
01-30-2012, 04:51 AM
This is a very interesting discussion. If Van Wert were just a nobody that Collings sent, then I would probably agree with the OP. But since he's such an important person for Collings, I actually think it's good that they sent him to be at the booth. I think that probably says more about how seriously they take NAMM compared to sending someone who's a great player but doesn't have any key role in the company--that would be equivalent to just sending a salesperson to run the booth.

raecarter
01-30-2012, 07:06 AM
This is a very interesting discussion. If Van Wert were just a nobody that Collings sent, then I would probably agree with the OP. But since he's such an important person for Collings, I actually think it's good that they sent him to be at the booth. I think that probably says more about how seriously they take NAMM compared to sending someone who's a great player but doesn't have any key role in the company--that would be equivalent to just sending a salesperson to run the booth.

That's a great point and very valid.

Nickie
01-30-2012, 07:18 AM
(the Kumalae interview, on the other hand...)

If I were this guy's boss, I'd fire him. Was he stoned, or what? And 'xcuse me, but wearing hardware on the face doesn't qualify for professional accessories... unless you are a tattoo/pierce artist.

ukeykondo
01-30-2012, 07:22 AM
Yes, and I'm sure all of you noticed the transparency of his comments "not everyone can afford an electric guitar"... as if the only/main reason to play the uke is that you can't afford a guitar. I don't know about you guys, but I traded my new Gibson Les Paul for a vintage Martin style 2 AND I paid the guy $100 extra to make the trade. I haven't regretted the trade for one second.


(the Kumalae interview, on the other hand...)

If I were this guy's boss, I'd fire him. Was he stoned, or what? And 'xcuse me, but wearing hardware on the face doesn't qualify for professional accessories... unless you are a tattoo/pierce artist.

austin1
01-30-2012, 07:23 AM
I think after my angry replies to austin1 she at least deserves the right of reply, whatever that may entail.

It entails a this:

Meh. You're probably right. I still don't think not-amazing uke playing at a venue is enough to "devalue" a really nice brand, and I also would never let one not-amazing sound sample sell (or not sell) a uke to me, but I suppose there are people out there who would. And at NAMM, where there are ninety billion instruments vying for your attention, maybe one sound sample is the only sound sample you get. At any rate not really worth getting into a huff over.

austin1
01-30-2012, 07:25 AM
(the Kumalae interview, on the other hand...)

If I were this guy's boss, I'd fire him. Was he stoned, or what? And 'xcuse me, but wearing hardware on the face doesn't qualify for professional accessories... unless you are a tattoo/pierce artist.

I think we can all agree that one was pretty terrible.

Rzr
01-30-2012, 07:25 AM
He seemed like a nice boy. If they have a waiting list their marketing strategy is working fine.

Drew Bear
01-30-2012, 07:34 AM
If Van Wert were just a nobody that Collings sent, then I would probably agree with the OP. But since he's such an important person for Collings, I actually think it's good that they sent him to be at the booth.Good point. Then really all they need to do is advise him not to demo instruments that he has not tuned. And keep the demo simple: play an open chord and a couple of simple chords like C and Am. Just let us hear the sound of the uke...in tune and without muffled chords.

This is the 2nd year in a row Aldrine has interviewed this guy with similar results. It's interesting that last year (2011 NAMM) he said they were building 2 ukes per day and trying to increase production. This year he said they're making 1 uke per day...and trying to increase production. :confused:

This video from 2009 NAMM provides some interesting insight to how Collings entered the uke market.

http://youtu.be/xOBZLRcBeAM

ukeykondo
01-30-2012, 07:41 AM
Next time he should handle it the way the big boss did in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PP09Qkem6I4

Plainsong
01-30-2012, 07:44 AM
It entails a this:

Meh. You're probably right. I still don't think not-amazing uke playing at a venue is enough to "devalue" a really nice brand, and I also would never let one not-amazing sound sample sell (or not sell) a uke to me, but I suppose there are people out there who would. And at NAMM, where there are ninety billion instruments vying for your attention, maybe one sound sample is the only sound sample you get. At any rate not really worth getting into a huff over.

It's amazing how you're taking everything so so literally. You're preaching about the value of Collings... to a guy that is well familiar with playing one himself, is even getting a custom order. It's all in the thread, all you have to do is read it?

It's a DISCUSSION forum. Aren't we allowed to talk about things uke related? Aren't we allowed to pass a critical eye, aren't we allowed to hold and apply a higher standard where it's appropriate?

There's two big misunderstandings in this thread. Firstly, that we're not allowed to talk about a complete business fail without it being seen as a witchhunt, which NO ONE is guilty of. Secondly, taking the idea that in the uke community, it's not ok to hold yourself to a higher standard, it's not ok to want to improve - and applying it to a business situation.

It IS ok to hold yourself, hold others, hold brands, to a higher standard where appropriate. There's nothing wrong with wanting to improve things. That's not a crime.

austin1
01-30-2012, 07:46 AM
It's amazing how you're taking everything so so literally. You're preaching about the value of Collings... to a guy that is well familiar with playing one himself, is even getting a custom order. It's all in the thread, all you have to do is read it?

It's a DISCUSSION forum. Aren't we allowed to talk about things uke related? Aren't we allowed to pass a critical eye, aren't we allowed to hold and apply a higher standard where it's appropriate?

There's two big misunderstandings in this thread. Firstly, that we're not allowed to talk about a complete business fail without it being seen as a witchhunt, which NO ONE is guilty of. Secondly, taking the idea that in the uke community, it's not ok to hold yourself to a higher standard, it's not ok to want to improve - and applying it to a business situation.

It IS ok to hold yourself, hold others, hold brands, to a higher standard where appropriate. There's nothing wrong with wanting to improve things. That's not a crime.

...is it okay to apologize? Because I'm pretty sure that's what I tried to do. Like I said. You're right.

Edit: To clarify, you are totally right, 100% correct, hast ja recht, without a doubt accurate. I'm running out of ways to type it, but please believe me when I tell you I read things the wrong way and you are not in the wrong.

Drew Bear
01-30-2012, 07:53 AM
Next time he should handle it the way the big boss did in this video...That's what I'm talking about! But what's with the "no tuning"? I know he's kidding, but in the context of this thread it's ironic.

OldePhart
01-30-2012, 11:52 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6aBWvejFrc

Seriously lol it's just terrible

"Let's see...how's that spelled again..." LOL

"We don't have any retailers right now..." With this guy staffing their NAMM booth they're not likely to have any in the foreseeable future, either.

And...hey...I'm sorry but that guy looks to be almost as old as I am, he ain't got no bidness having that much metal hanging from various parts of his face! :biglaugh:


John

OldePhart
01-30-2012, 11:55 AM
Next time he should handle it the way the big boss did in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PP09Qkem6I4

Yep, that's the way it should be done!

23skidoo
01-30-2012, 12:43 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ErgjWkeMUw

I'd buy one, if I had the scratch.....

Hippie Dribble
01-30-2012, 01:47 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ErgjWkeMUw

I'd buy one, if I had the scratch.....
nice post Bill.

I remember seeing this when it was released on youtube, amazing playing and so casual. What a gorgeous instrument too, if I'm correct a much loved member here now owns this uke and loves it to bits... :)

Jnobianchi
01-30-2012, 02:56 PM
bad day alright brother. That was a 'demo'?...whew...sorry for the rant folks...starting to calm down a bit now but really, it's just the lonely cry of a frustrated Collings owner. I never had posted a 'dislike' on youtube before and never thought I would, but after a few hundred likes, that pushed me over the edge :o

:) I can't blame you at all. I've seen a few things coming out of NAMM2012 that have made my hair stand on end, but none more than this. The other thing that got me was the Taylor matching uke and guitar set for $7K+. Yes, high-quality, beautiful instrument. Yes, an amazing design ethic. And yes, I can understand that a company wants to make a top-of-the-line, extremely expensive instrument to set the quality bar up hight...and YET...

The whole thing smacked of jumping on the uke bandwagon while utterly failing to appreciate why people play.

Because they're in reach of everybody, because it's an instrument that has no real snobbery attached to it, you kind of have to be careful about what you present. The minute you start making highfalutin' stuff that isn't really a uke (they even call it a miniature guitar for the guitar player who wants to try the uke) is the minute you lose your audience.

Don't try so hard next time, Taylor... :)

specialk13
01-30-2012, 07:05 PM
I remember an email I received from a Collings dealer where he stated Collings doesn't make money off their uke line. Not sure if I believe it, but that's a curious thing. The uke has turned out to be their loss leader, not that they're hurting much.
Anyways, I hope they continue to produce amazing ukes regardless of how they are represented at NAMM.

salukulady
01-30-2012, 07:41 PM
:)
The whole thing smacked of jumping on the uke bandwagon while utterly failing to appreciate why people play.


I was at NAMM last year and this year. Most guitar companies now have a uke or two. Collings had 4 on display. And this year there were about 12 booths of unknown but obviously chinese built lower quality ukes, most without names on them. Very few of these booths had anyone who could speak english. One booth wouldn't even let us take pictures. It was weird. Yes, everyones jumping on the uke band wagon.

At NAMM most booths you are encouraged to touch and play the merchandise. Collings was the only booth that had "Please ask for assistance" signs on their ukes. Not even Kamaka does that. I played Kamakas, Kanileas, Big Islands, Kamoas, all of them, even a Breedlove (another guitar company that makes an expensive uke).....I did not play a Collings.

mr moonlight
01-30-2012, 10:15 PM
I remember an email I received from a Collings dealer where he stated Collings doesn't make money off their uke line. Not sure if I believe it, but that's a curious thing. The uke has turned out to be their loss leader, not that they're hurting much.
Anyways, I hope they continue to produce amazing ukes regardless of how they are represented at NAMM.

It could be that since they only make 1 a day. One uke a day to cover all the advertising, construction, lease, equipment, staff... seems like a pretty big stretch. I'm sure they will start turning a profit once they up production.

Still that was a pretty sad presentation of their uke.

Blrfl
01-31-2012, 03:40 AM
Leo Fender couldn't play a guitar if his life depended on it, and if he were to magically appear at the Fender booth, nobody would be laying this kind of crap on Fender. Most people who make good instruments aren't particularly good musicians, and most good musicians aren't particularly good luthiers.

If you've purchased something and are looking to be validated by how much the manufacturer's marketing program promotes it, take heed of something Bob Dylan once said:



"Just because you like my stuff doesn't mean I owe you anything."


--Mark

SuzukHammer
01-31-2012, 04:30 AM
nice post Bill.

I remember seeing this when it was released on youtube, amazing playing and so casual. What a gorgeous instrument too, if I'm correct a much loved member here now owns this uke and loves it to bits... :)

MGM bought it and then I bought it off MGM. If you are referring to me as a "much loved member", I need to remind you that I am currently living away from my wife so its all getting rusty. haha.

But its true. I love that sassy Red Collings uke. I wish someday that I can play it like James does so effortlessly.

Thanks for reminding me that its still got James Hill and MGM's mojo on it.

Plainsong
01-31-2012, 08:34 AM
If Dylan branded a company that built me a boutique product, I'd expect a warranty. If I was a dealer looking to carry his products, I wouldn't if they weren't presented in such a way that I couldn't hold, touch, or tell anything about them. It's a great quote, just more fighty than applicable. The same goes with Fender, you get someone to play. All this ground really has been covered.


Leo Fender couldn't play a guitar if his life depended on it, and if he were to magically appear at the Fender booth, nobody would be laying this kind of crap on Fender. Most people who make good instruments aren't particularly good musicians, and most good musicians aren't particularly good luthiers.

If you've purchased something and are looking to be validated by how much the manufacturer's marketing program promotes it, take heed of something Bob Dylan once said:



"Just because you like my stuff doesn't mean I owe you anything."


--Mark

cletus
01-31-2012, 09:30 AM
If you are referring to me as a "much loved member", I need to remind you that I am currently living away from my wife so its all getting rusty. haha.

:rofl: :uhoh:

:cheers:

Hippie Dribble
01-31-2012, 09:57 AM
MGM bought it and then I bought it off MGM. If you are referring to me as a "much loved member", I need to remind you that I am currently living away from my wife so its all getting rusty. haha.

But its true. I love that sassy Red Collings uke. I wish someday that I can play it like James does so effortlessly.

Thanks for reminding me that its still got James Hill and MGM's mojo on it.
sad but true brother. I lived away from Eugenie for several months last year and it all turned to powder. Had the humidor going since then and things have all been put back together thankfully and hydrated to the point of functionality :)

Drew Bear
01-31-2012, 10:18 AM
All this ground really has been covered.
Yup. That's what happens when a thread goes this long. Anyone new usually doesn't spend an hour reading through all the previous posts.


One uke a day to cover all the advertising, construction, lease, equipment, staff... seems like a pretty big stretch. I'm sure they will start turning a profit once they up production.
If you go to the bottom of page 10 on this thread, you'll see a video from 2009 where Bruce describes how Collings entered the uke market. They were able to use their existing guitar-making equipment for most of what they needed to build the first few ukes. They quickly built the special uke-only items that were required. A significant portion of the process is finishing and they already had that in place.

In general, I think guitar makers have a much lower cost-of-entry compared to a builder jumping into the market from scratch. That comment from the Collings dealer sounds like spin to counter a price negotiation. I doubt Collings shares their profit margin data with their dealers.

It's not clear how many ukes Collings are making each year. A year ago they claimed 2 ukes per day, now it's 1 uke per day. If you assume something in between, they're roughly at the same capacity as Mya Moe, but with a higher average sales price. Yes, Mya Moe is only direct sales, but I seriously doubt Collings is losing money selling ukes even through their dealer network.

Remember also that some of these established guitar makers have big stock piles of wood that are too small to use for guitars, but are perfect for ukulele. Another cost advantage they have over other uke makers. I'd say Collings is profiting comfortably from their uke business.

amute
01-31-2012, 10:28 AM
I could imagine a similar situation with a gun holding a shotgun backwards, looking down the barrel and then blowing into it and saying "Yea it's a great gun".
For the high dollar stuff Collings makes one would have thought the rep could have had a really Uke player demo it. But they don't care. LOL

Checkout Taylor Guitars all KOA Tenor Ukulele, it's paired with a matching guitar. Fancy! (not cheap)

Blrfl
01-31-2012, 12:30 PM
If Dylan branded a company that built me a boutique product, I'd expect a warranty. If I was a dealer looking to carry his products, I wouldn't if they weren't presented in such a way that I couldn't hold, touch, or tell anything about them.

I'm not sure what warranties have to do with it or why anyone holding a ticket to the show wouldn't be able to do any of those things. The instruments weren't in glass cases or anything. We saw the ukes they were producing and got a pretty good summary of their features. Short of having a big-name player in the booth and this one guy not having a polished marketing presentation, I don't see where Collings missed the mark.

Let me go back to a few of this thread's early posts for a sec:


Aldrine was very diplomatic off course, but the bitter aftertaste that really lingers here, is, if they have a demo guy showcasing 2000 dollar instruments who can't actually play, what is that saying about how seriously Collings are taking the ukulele as an inherently worthwhile and valuable instrument as opposed to just another bandwagon to have jumped on to up the profit margin???

bad day alright brother. That was a 'demo'?...whew...sorry for the rant folks...starting to calm down a bit now but really, it's just the lonely cry of a frustrated Collings owner.

... But when you get to the instrument show that is the most publicly exposed on the planet and they get a guy demoing their new ukes who can't even play, one questions the 'heart' behind it - if there is any at all. I mean, is there a genuine passion for the uke at Collings or are they firmly guitar heads who still look upon the uke as a bit of a joke.

This is where the Dylan quote is relevant. The implication here is that Collings isn't paying the OP's instrument -- one he's already purchased -- the proper respect by promoting it enough. Maybe I don't understand what Eugene finds frustrating about his instrument that additional promotion will help, but I'm willing to be enlightened.

If Collings is dipping its toe in the uke waters before starting to mass produce them, I say good on 'em. It means they're not treating the instrument as smaller versions of their guitars. The first thing the guy said was that they're not producing very many of them, which is an awfully good reason not spend money generating demand for products they're not prepared to deliver in quantity.

--Mark

Gwynedd
01-31-2012, 12:34 PM
Self-love is a form of love....

seneystretch
01-31-2012, 12:57 PM
[QUOTE=austin1 I still don't think not-amazing uke playing at a venue is enough to "devalue" a really nice brand, and I also would never let one not-amazing sound sample sell (or not sell) a uke to me <<

Ah but it does to folks like me who live hours drive from a decently stocked music store. I'm a 4 (that's not a fingerfumble) hour drive to the nearest Interstate and another hour to the store. I'm in a small group but really it's Youtube or nothing.

The Takumi booth shorted Loprinzi, Freemont, Kiwaya, Kelii, they got absolutely nothing for the money paid to that distributor. Mike DaSilva showed off his stuff to good effect. I'm betting the retailers got the same demo we did.

And yes Loprinzi was severely devalued by that booth, by about 40% with my particular purchase. If the public doesn't know what a brand is then it's dead to the retailer.

Aldrine did a great job with Jim Beloff and Luna ukes. I learned much from those interviews. Aldrine and UkeRepublic that's pretty much it when it comes to sound demos for current instruments.

NAMM is the big time. The wholesalers and luthiers need to treat it that way.

cletus
01-31-2012, 01:03 PM
sad but true brother. I lived away from Eugenie for several months last year and it all turned to powder. Had the humidor going since then and things have all been put back together thankfully and hydrated to the point of functionality :)

Now, I finally understand humidification!


:old:

Plainsong
01-31-2012, 02:54 PM
Oh for heaven's sakes Dylan wrote songs, Collings is a business. NOT THE SAME.

As for the no touching rule, again that's earlier in the thread. They had a no touching rule on their ukes...so as a dealer you can't hear them properly and you can't play it yourself, so...

I'm done here. It's just beyond frustrating now.

Bill1
01-31-2012, 02:57 PM
It looks like Collings have generated at least 13 pages of promotion on a well known ukulele BB, all from a sales person having some random fun in a film clip. Even in the work of promoting the product, playing a uke is about having serious fun. Anyone who is on a video or in public having serious fun with a uke will sell the uke as an accessible musical instrument even if it isn't a promotional activity, no matter how well they play or how expensive the uke is, and that is the way I like it. Peace and love to all.
I look forward to seeing what they do at the next NAMM thingy.

itsme
01-31-2012, 04:04 PM
As for the no touching rule, again that's earlier in the thread. They had a no touching rule on their ukes...so as a dealer you can't hear them properly and you can't play it yourself, so...
I thought it was more of a "please ask for assistance" thing, not "we won't allow you to touch it at all".

Have you ever been to a store that sells delicate things and has a "you break it, you bought it" sign?

I can totally understand that. Do you want just anyone walking up to displays of your delicate instruments and wailing on them?

In one MGM vid posted here, he takes off his jacket and lanyard before he attempts to play the uke, showing respect for not wanting to potentially scratch the instrument while he's playing it.

Couloirman
01-31-2012, 04:19 PM
I love Collings ukes-- best sounding uke I ever played was a Collings.. This video makes me think no differently of them.

Hippie Dribble
01-31-2012, 05:02 PM
I'm not sure what warranties have to do with it or why anyone holding a ticket to the show wouldn't be able to do any of those things. The instruments weren't in glass cases or anything. We saw the ukes they were producing and got a pretty good summary of their features. Short of having a big-name player in the booth and this one guy not having a polished marketing presentation, I don't see where Collings missed the mark.

Let me go back to a few of this thread's early posts for a sec:





This is where the Dylan quote is relevant. The implication here is that Collings isn't paying the OP's instrument -- one he's already purchased -- the proper respect by promoting it enough. Maybe I don't understand what Eugene finds frustrating about his instrument that additional promotion will help, but I'm willing to be enlightened.

If Collings is dipping its toe in the uke waters before starting to mass produce them, I say good on 'em. It means they're not treating the instrument as smaller versions of their guitars. The first thing the guy said was that they're not producing very many of them, which is an awfully good reason not spend money generating demand for products they're not prepared to deliver in quantity.

--Mark

Not 'my' instrument mate, Their instruments...generic...did you read the thread at all Mark?

my frustration is when you have such quality products to sell why wouldn't you take a little more care and effort to show them in a manner that does them justice. Man, I love Dylan as much as anyone but this is why your Dylan quote was irrelevant. They don't owe me nuthin, they owe themselves sumthin...anyway, while we're quoting him, here's another for you...

'most likely you go your way and I'll go mine' cheers

can we close this thread moderators? surely we've gone as far as we can go?

SweetWaterBlue
02-02-2012, 01:34 AM
I wonder how much different the responses would be if this were a builders' thread and they had a player in the booth? People would be saying, "My God I can't believe that guy knew zilch about how the uke was built. All he could do was play it." As someone else said, the show is for trade people and any of them that wanted a real sound sample could probably have asked. I guess I feel sorry for the poor guy caught flatfooted by the camera, although Aldrine was very diplomatic.

buddhuu
02-02-2012, 02:52 AM
Nothing new happening here, folks.

Signal:aloha:noise ratio way down. Let this one rest in peace.

Thanks.