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View Full Version : The baritone: Just a small guitar?



BassGuyukin'
09-15-2012, 10:22 AM
When I first started playing the ukulele several months ago I wanted to be different. No regular guitars for me, I am just going to the high end and sticking with ukes. I purposely avoided the baritone as I saw it as just a small guitar missing the two low strings. And essentially that is what it is.

But what the heck. I picked up a classical guitar, tried to ignore the two low strings and with those other four strings I was making some very pretty music! Just yesterday I received my Oscar Schmidt OU5B and boy I am loving it!

Yeah, it still does seem more like a guitar to me. Actually I consider it a guitar/ukulele hybrid. But in any event, now I am a convert! Love the baritone!

WhenDogsSing
09-15-2012, 10:29 AM
I love baritones too. You can get the right gauge strings and tune it up to GCEA if you want. I have mine tuned GCEA and, in my opinion, that tuning brings out a better sound than the standard DGBE tuning.

PedalFreak
09-15-2012, 10:49 AM
I think that the Baritone uke is just fine as a uke :)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCTSuK0NiaE

PedalFreak
09-15-2012, 10:50 AM
And another :)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6y0mNVR03A

savagehenry
09-15-2012, 11:03 AM
Try a baritone tuned reentrant, it doesn't sound like a guitar at all. I've been going back and forth between dGBE and gCEA, can't make up my kind which I like better.

pulelehua
09-15-2012, 11:42 AM
Is a baritone tuned gCEA really a baritone, or is it really a ukulele?


Mwahahahahahahahahahahahaha! :mad:

Pundabaya
09-15-2012, 12:08 PM
Nah, a baritone uke isn't a small guitar... it's a really tiny bass guitar!

mds725
09-15-2012, 06:45 PM
Baritone ukuleles are not small guitars. Or guitars at all. Period. I have baritone ukuleles and I have a Blueridge tenor guitar (a 4 string guitar with a scale length that's maybe an inch or two longer than a baritone's) that, like typical baritones, is tuned DGBE. I can tell the substantial difference between them. Yes, a baritone tuned DGBE has a lower voice than other ukuleles, but calling it a guitar for that reason is like saying that Bea Arthur was a man. Ukuleles make a more percussive sound than guitars do; there's a sort of "whomp" that emanates from them when you strum them; my baritones make that sound, my tenor guitar doesn't really.

Hippie Dribble
09-15-2012, 06:50 PM
oooh, I always thought a guitar was just a big baritone with two unnecessary strings :p

Paul December
09-15-2012, 07:41 PM
Sorry guys, of course it's a small guitar.

mds725
09-15-2012, 08:33 PM
Sorry guys, of course it's a small guitar.

Then I guess tenor ukuleles aren't really ukuleles either. I mean, they're significantly bigger than "traditional" (i.e., soprano) ukuleles and their voices are deeper. And they can be tuned DGBE, too. Maybe tenors are just really, really small guitars.

Hippie Dribble
09-15-2012, 08:39 PM
Then I guess tenor ukuleles aren't really ukuleles either. I mean, they're significantly bigger than "traditional" (i.e., soprano) ukuleles and their voices are deeper. And they can be tuned DGBE, too. Maybe tenors are just really, really small guitars.

he he Mark...and concerts are really, really, really small guitars and sopranos are really, really, really, REALLY small guitars. And sopraninos are... :stop: aaaaarrrrrgggghghghghgh!!!!!!

mds725
09-15-2012, 08:43 PM
he he Mark...and concerts are really, really, really small guitars and sopranos are really, really, really, REALLY small guitars. And sopraninos are... aaaaarrrrrgggghghghghgh!!!!!!


Ha ha, Jon. Maybe it's all just a matter of perspective, and guitars are really ukuleles on steroids, testosterone and other performance enhancing drugs, which explains the bigger size, the deeper voice, and the mutation of extra strings.

drbekken
09-15-2012, 08:49 PM
And a double bass is really a septuple baritone ukulele - gut strings and all.
(Is 'septuple' a real word, by the way?)

kissing
09-15-2012, 08:55 PM
I think we're victims of a society that wants us to compare everything to guitar.
A baritone uke is what it is.

A ukulele, built like a ukulele, by ukulele makers, of a "baritone" voicing (ie: lower voicing) than soprano/concert/tenor.

It has similarities to a guitar.
But it is not a guitar.



A ukulele is a guitar too then, of smaller size and an alternate tuning.

ukuhippo
09-15-2012, 10:59 PM
My personal view:

A soprano ukulele is a real ukulele
A concert ukulele is a ukulele
A tenor ukulele is a ukulele
A baritone ukulele is a baritone ukulele

BassGuyukin'
09-15-2012, 11:11 PM
I still say a baritone is a guitar/ukulele hybrid. Hope no one takes offense to that. It is not an insult. It pretty much sits right in the middle of the two other instruments, so the hybrid designation makes sense to me.

kissing
09-16-2012, 12:17 AM
Indeed, a ukulele that had transition to guitar in mind, but never a guitar-ukulele hybrid...

savagehenry
09-16-2012, 12:30 AM
I still say a baritone is a guitar/ukulele hybrid. Hope no one takes offense to that. It is not an insult. It pretty much sits right in the middle of the two other instruments, so the hybrid designation makes sense to me.

How about a baritone tuned gCEA? Is it the baritone tuning or the size that makes you think it is a guitar?

Lalz
09-16-2012, 12:51 AM
I think we're victims of a society that wants us to compare everything to guitar.
A baritone uke is what it is.


I agree. When did the guitar become the reference for everything? After all a guitar is just a glorified lute.

Paul December
09-16-2012, 04:54 AM
Would a baritone uke exists if there weren't guitars?

tomtiki
09-17-2012, 03:19 AM
I would say the tuning. My first instrument is guitar, which I still enjoy playing, but there is nothing like the sound of GCEA tuning. My newest instrument is a Deering tenor banjo with Aquila 23U Nylgut baritone uke strings (gCEA). It's not a uke, but it has the uke "feel" to me. Its' 20 inch scale is nearly the same as a baritone uke, so the switch is easy. It's a great instrument for playing with a bunch of other instruments as it gives you the volume to compete with other louder instruments.

--tom



How about a baritone tuned gCEA? Is it the baritone tuning or the size that makes you think it is a guitar?

ichadwick
09-18-2012, 07:30 AM
Next thing you're going to love is a tenor guitar.... those steel strings just sing....

TheOnlyUkeThatMatters
09-18-2012, 08:19 AM
Viva la baritone! Congrats on discovering the mellow land of the baritone uke, BassGuy; I'm sure you'll enjoy exploring.

Oh, and yep, ukuleles are little, four-stringed guitars; guitars are big, six-stringed ukuleles; drums are banjos without five-stringed ukulele/guitar necks; etc. etc. What's in a name?

mds725
09-18-2012, 08:45 AM
Next thing you're going to love is a tenor guitar.... those steel strings just sing....

I completely agree. I love my baritone ukuleles and my tenor guitar, and they're definitely not the same thing.

csibona
09-18-2012, 10:34 AM
Funny, I always think of the ukulele as a four string fretted oud - single coursed and played with the fingers (typically). Oh, yeah, and there is some relationship between the strings and the frequency thereabouts.