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NOTLguy
01-22-2014, 11:04 AM
I have read signatures, with envy, by many members of this forum when looking at the Marketplace and noted the incredible variety and number of ukuleles that some members own. Many members appear to own a good number of very desirable ukes from soprano to baritone.

My collection is one Lanikai concert ukulele and a Gold Tone concert banjolele which I am likely to part with soon. I will likely acquire a Pono concert this month. My thinking is that during my 2 hours of ukulele use per day, I really only need one or perhaps two ukuleles tops. I also play with a group of ukesters each week on Sunday afternoon.

With that said I pondered whether those with many ukuleles were "collectors" or "players" ?

It would be interesting to hear from those with multiple ukes as to why they have so many and how you make the best use of all those ukukeles.

Regards,
NOTLguy

BlueLatitude
01-22-2014, 11:17 AM
The thing is, they all sound different and feel different. Different builds, sizes, strings, tunings.... I think most people with a lot of ukes play them all.

Kyle23
01-22-2014, 11:21 AM
The thing is, they all sound different and feel different. Different builds, sizes, strings, tunings.... I think most people with a lot of ukes play them all.

Most people in the marketplace say "I don't get to play this because of my other ukes" or something along those lines when selling.

BlueLatitude
01-22-2014, 11:24 AM
Most people in the marketplace say "I don't get to play this because of my other ukes" or something along those lines when selling.

Some do. And some never sell any uke that they've ever bought.

janeray1940
01-22-2014, 11:26 AM
Interesting question, I've also often wondered about the motivation behind acquiring numerous ukes (especially when some or all go unplayed).

I only own three ukes myself and consider myself a player and definitely NOT a collector - in fact, the only reason I own "so many" is that each serves a specific purpose (custom 19-fret soprano for lead/solo playing, factory pineapple soprano for uke group strumming, and concert uke for low G arrangements). Until I started playing some arrangements that required more frets than the standard soprano uke, I got by just fine with only the latter two ukes; if it came down to it, I could now get by just fine with the custom and the low G.

When I've asked people I know who own larger numbers of ukes why they "need" so many, they usually justify this the exact same way I just did: that each has its own purpose. Different tonewoods, different sounds for different styles of music, etc.

I used to list mine in my sig, but... I dunno, it started to sort of remind me of the uke equivalent of wearing designer clothes or driving a fancy car or any other status-seeking behavior, and as that was definitely not my intention, I decided that how many and what kind of ukes I play really wasn't relevant to my identity on this forum. I'll mention what they are if the context warrants it, but no need to broadcast "how cool I am" because of the kinds of ukes I play :)

1300cc
01-22-2014, 11:38 AM
The thing is, they all sound different and feel different. Different builds, sizes, strings, tunings.... I think most people with a lot of ukes play them all.
i agree......

mds725
01-22-2014, 11:51 AM
Interesting question, I've also often wondered about the motivation behind acquiring numerous ukes (especially when some or all go unplayed).

I only own three ukes myself and consider myself a player and definitely NOT a collector - in fact, the only reason I own "so many" is that each serves a specific purpose (custom 19-fret soprano for lead/solo playing, factory pineapple soprano for uke group strumming, and concert uke for low G arrangements). Until I started playing some arrangements that required more frets than the standard soprano uke, I got by just fine with only the latter two ukes; if it came down to it, I could now get by just fine with the custom and the low G.

When I've asked people I know who own larger numbers of ukes why they "need" so many, they usually justify this the exact same way I just did: that each has its own purpose. Different tonewoods, different sounds for different styles of music, etc.

I used to list mine in my sig, but... I dunno, it started to sort of remind me of the uke equivalent of wearing designer clothes or driving a fancy car or any other status-seeking behavior, and as that was definitely not my intention, I decided that how many and what kind of ukes I play really wasn't relevant to my identity on this forum. I'll mention what they are if the context warrants it, but no need to broadcast "how cool I am" because of the kinds of ukes I play :)

I agree with the views expressed in this post. I have a lot more ukuleles, but I acquired each one with an idea of the purpose it would serve. The analogy I use is shoes; the shoes I wear for my job serve the purpose of covering my feet, but I wouldn't wear them to go running or cycling, and I wouldn't wear them with a tuxedo.

Because some of the ukuleles I've acquired are, arguably, upgrades of others, I find that I now have some ukuleles I don't play so much because one or more other ukuleles performs the functions it would otherwise perform, so I've been thinking about selling the ones I don't play. Probably the only ukuleles I have just to own them are an older Kamaka soprano and some Makala Dolphins and Sharks in various colors.

SailingUke
01-22-2014, 12:21 PM
Interesting question, I am both a player and collector.
I play everyday and usually rotate through the ukuleles.
I have ukes for dress and those for just carrying anywhere.
High and Low G and C & G tuning.
I have several 1920 something Gibsons, they get played, but definitely were bought for the collection.
My regular players are a DaSilva (JH model), Mya-Moe resonator, Mya-Moe 6 string, Vento and my KoAloha super concert.
There is a ukulele and/or guitar in almost every room of the house ready to pick up and play.

Cornfield
01-22-2014, 12:23 PM
It took me awhile to figure out what I sizes and styles I like. I also have guitars of various configurations. I wouldn't call myself a collector but I do like having a choice of instruments to play. I'm sitting in my office right now where I have a dreadnaught size guitar, a cornet, an 8 string tenor uke and a soprano ukulele. Each sounds different.

soupking
01-22-2014, 12:24 PM
I got pretty bad with purchasing as you can see. Haha. I was really addicted up until around this time last year. I guess I'd consider myself more of a player even though I stink. Haven't purchased one since last April, which for me is practically a miracle. I wish I had explored more of a variation in different woods overall, but I have owned different stuff that I eventually sold off because I prefer the koa and mahogany ukes. Deacquision phase at present finally. I actually didn't have a signature until recently but the main reason I made one was in case anyone ever had a question about any of the ukes I own, because I think the root of my over buying was mostly on account of there just aren't any stores to try out the higher end (or at least not lower end) stuff for hundreds of miles of where I live. So, basically, I'm a perfect example of someone who really, really foolishly overdid it, but I'm here to help with opinions/recommendations. Lol.

allanr
01-22-2014, 12:46 PM
For me it's both.

As a player I have at least one uke for every purpose. Ukulese are musical instruments. Musical instruments are the tools that musicians use to make their music. A chef can use just one good knife. But most chefs have a small collection of very good knives.

At the very least it helps to have low and high g ukes, two or three sizes, and perhaps a banjo, resonator, solid body electric, etc. Sure, its possible to get by with just one uke. Heck, Jake Shimabukuru travels with a single Kamaka tenor. His philosophy is like a concert violinist; he wants the uke to be an integral part of his being.

As a uke collector my collection is moderate by the standards of more serious collectors. But it gives me pleasure.

TG&Y
01-22-2014, 12:51 PM
I'm a little troubled by this too. There are 10 in my house with one being my wife's baby. Definitely have an embarrassment of riches, although my 'high-ends' are Mainlands (and they are high-end, cherished instruments in my world) but I sometimes wonder if it would be more advantageous to have bought just one ukulele and devoted myself to that fretboard and scale. But dang, as others have said, so many flavors and so many different sounds and feels. I like them all. Not a collector (but maybe a wee bit of a hoarder?).
My instruments, most of them, hang about a foot and a half in front of my nose and just above eye-level. I get the itch and reach for an uke and often don't know which will be in my hands until I pull one of them down. So they all get played, but none of them as much as I'd like and as much as I think would benefit my progress. But I ain't giving them up! Cold dead fingers and all.

My 7th gifted ukulele should arrive to a musician friend tomorrow via FEDEX, an unexpected surprise. Doing that gives me almost as much pleasure as opening a delivered oblong box here at the hoarder house.

Papa Tom
01-22-2014, 12:55 PM
>>>There is a ukulele and/or guitar in almost every room of the house ready to pick up and play.<<<

That's my situation, too. I have two cheap sopranos and a cheap banjo uke and I'd love a few more just to have one at my fingertips any time I get the urge to play. Ideally, I'd like a $25 plastic one for work and a pocket uke for my car, so I can whip it out at traffic lights.

I'm sure others have other reasons for collecting, but for me, the uke is so freakin' addictive, that I just want one everywhere I am, regardless of its quality.

RichM
01-22-2014, 01:00 PM
I used to list mine in my sig, but... I dunno, it started to sort of remind me of the uke equivalent of wearing designer clothes or driving a fancy car or any other status-seeking behavior, and as that was definitely not my intention, I decided that how many and what kind of ukes I play really wasn't relevant to my identity on this forum. I'll mention what they are if the context warrants it, but no need to broadcast "how cool I am" because of the kinds of ukes I play :)

That last line made me smile. I have yet to meet the person who thinks I'm "cool" because I collect ukuleles! :)

bborzell
01-22-2014, 01:01 PM
Pretty much the same question that can asked about mandolin and guitar players. My guess is that relatively few folks who own multiple ukes are not players. But then, what does it take to be classified as a uke player? Strumming three or four chords or finger picking complex chord melodies?

I think it might be a distinction without meaning. Pleasure from playing an instrument can be attained at most any level of proficiency and, in that regard, only people who buy instruments and simply do not play them should be considered just collectors. Everybody else who buys more ukes than they can play at one time might be anything from a closet colletor to a full blown, "Oh! I gotta have that one!" kind of accumulator.

Maybe the common thread here is the fact that many if not most guitars, mandolins and ukes are fashioned and finished as desirable pieces of wood construction. In addition to sounding wonderful in the right hands, they simply look like works of art. And, art is often collected.

Papa Tom
01-22-2014, 01:55 PM
To add to my earlier post...

I'm a good player, not a great one. I don't think a "better" uke will make me play any better, so I don't want to hog up any of the good ukes and keep a great one from getting into the hands of someone who might really play the heck out of it. That'd just be selfish.

JLM
01-22-2014, 02:02 PM
I think most of us are in search of "the one". In the initial phase, we acquire multiple ukes to find the size, sound, feel we like the best. In the process I think most players find what they like and focus on those sizes, brands, etc. I was lucky. I started with an inexpensive Maholo. After a couple months, I saw an incredible deal on a handmade Uke ($350) and bought it. That was in August of last year. I play it every day and I am thankful for my good fortune. I am currently having the builder make my sons and I a set of triplet sopranos from from cherry and Sitka spruce I have had for 8 years planning to have a 00 guitar made from. I will soon have two Three Cedar sopranos made by Ben Cram and one for each of my boys. The only other Uke I see myself buying is a Martin OXK for camping and fishing trips due to the durability. Indiana heat and humidity can be brutal! To each their own. 20 ukes or one - this little instrument is the best therapy I have ever found!

Doc_J
01-22-2014, 02:05 PM
That last line made me smile. I have yet to meet the person who thinks I'm "cool" because I collect ukuleles! :)

Ain't that the truth!

I enjoy discovering the subtle and not so subtle differences in ukes. No 2 ukes sound the same to me. I play all my ukes. Maybe some would say I'm a collector too, but I don't think that I am. I've parted with a good many wonderful ukes.

Hippie Dribble
01-22-2014, 02:05 PM
Aside from women, ukuleles are the prettiest and sweetest sounding things on the planet. I love to experience new builders and experiment with different woods as a player, but I never have more than 1/2 a dozen or so in my possession at any one time, so certainly not a collector. I buy, try then pass them along if I don't connect with them.

allanr
01-22-2014, 02:09 PM
That last line made me smile. I have yet to meet the person who thinks I'm "cool" because I collect ukuleles! :)

I think you're cool because you collect ukuleles. But we've never met, so you're still good.

suburude
01-22-2014, 02:48 PM
Have bought and sold many many guitars in my life (At Least 30) I now have 2 ! I play them regularly ! I now have 6 ukes soon to sell 2 of them.
I am lucky to have the opportunity to buy and sell them ! Mostly because I love them and learned what I like and what I don't . I don't know if I am a collector or not
It do,s not matter to me !! :-) suburude

Peterjens
01-22-2014, 03:04 PM
A playful collector.
Martins - "0" 1923,1960, "3" 1948 (mahogany)
1920 Kumalae Style 25 (koa), 1978 Kamaka P'apple (koa), KoAloha 2013 (koa), Black Bear 2013 (macadamia/mango) - all soprano

janeray1940
01-22-2014, 03:04 PM
That last line made me smile. I have yet to meet the person who thinks I'm "cool" because I collect ukuleles! :)

Hey, I do! :) But not in the status-seeking way I referenced in my post of course, looks like you've got an interesting collection that actually gets played.


Maybe some would say I'm a collector too, but I don't think that I am. I've parted with a good many wonderful ukes.

From our exchanges here, I'd definitely consider you a player first... who has good taste in ukes and likes to try different ones out.

And I suppose one can be both a player and a collector... but when I think of collector specifically, I think more of people who need to have "one of everything" (e.g. one of each K brand, one of each size, etc) for the sake of having them, rather than playing them. Not that there's anything wrong with that, if they can afford it and it makes them happy!

katysax
01-22-2014, 04:15 PM
I think of myself mostly as a player, but I do have some as a collector. I guess I have a lot of ukes because getting a new uke is fun. Some of them I stumbled upon locally and they were just great deals, I bought them thinking I could always resell them, but then didn't. Some of them I bought for a particular purpose. Also tastes change. I used to think I wanted K brand ukes and now I tend to prefer small builder ukes. I used to think I wanted to play tenor but I mostly like Concerts. Occasionally I sell a uke or give one away to a friend. Right now I have too many but have a hard time letting them go. Most of them get played, a lot.

Nickie
01-22-2014, 05:18 PM
I've found that one can't "buy" thier way to being a good ukulele player. I have 2, one is for work (My fave almost got knocked off a clients table). I'd like 1 more so that I can tune to D tuning, which is more fun to sing in. I also have a bari, but I don't have time to learn to play it yet...

kohanmike
01-22-2014, 09:03 PM
In the six months I've been playing, I probably fall into a different category, I started with a soprano, but that was too small, so now all of my ukes are exactly the same configuration, tenor cutaway with electronics, all great deals, the main difference is the wood. I've sold or given away three, and I play all of them in rotation every week. So I'm deep into UAS as a specific collector/accumulator who plays them all.

http://www.fairfax67.com/images/Uke mix.jpg

consitter
01-22-2014, 09:50 PM
That last line made me smile. I have yet to meet the person who thinks I'm "cool" because I collect ukuleles! :)

I think you're cool Rich. But not because of your uke collection. It's your otter face that makes me think you're cool. :)

consitter
01-22-2014, 09:54 PM
I've found that one can't "buy" thier way to being a good ukulele player. I have 2, one is for work (My fave almost got knocked off a clients table). I'd like 1 more so that I can tune to D tuning, which is more fun to sing in. I also have a bari, but I don't have time to learn to play it yet...

You are exactly right. I have one of the nicest ukes (in my opinion) out there. I'm not a better player because of it, by any means.

savagehenry
01-22-2014, 11:55 PM
I think it's great to have your ukuleles listed in your signature. I can't tell you the number of times someone has contacted me with questions about one of my ukuleles. I have even posted a few videos when a sound sample was requested. It's easy to get carried away with the number of ukuleles, especially in the beginning. I know that I have more instruments than I need, but I do play all of them throughout the week. Probably at this point, I would get rid of one to buy one.

uketeecee
01-22-2014, 11:59 PM
I own 14 Martin ukes. Each day I play a different uke. After 14 days I start over. I don't consider myself a collector nor a player. I'm an enthusiast.

NOTLguy
01-23-2014, 01:44 AM
This is a ukulele bulletin board. It is one of the few places where a person can list the ukes they own and it means something to the rest of the members. I don't think there is any problem with listing the number of ukes in your signature block, but I just can't be bothered finding them all and typing out a list. I think there is a problem with looking at what someone else has in their signature block and feeling envious or judge-mental because it is not the same as what you have. Most members here do not grow the ukes on trees, they work hard to get the cash to buy their instruments, mostly while supporting dependents and domestic situations.

I posted this as I was curious as to whether the people with multiple ukes were players or collectors as the subject of the post indicates. As I am retired and do not have the funds to buy very high end ukes I am envious of those who can. It is interesting to see the variety of ukes people own and now I have a better idea of why they have them.

My goal is to be the best uke player I can and enjoy playing the songs I grew up with.

NOTLguy

JamieWG
01-23-2014, 02:52 AM
I started out with a concert size, but as I explored repertoire, I realized that concert may or may not be the best size for me. I figured the only way to find out was to get a fairly decent one of each size (except baritone, since I'm already a guitar player and I don't want to deal with a uke that's not tuned like the rest of my ukes.) If someday I want a high end instrument that sounds really great, it makes sense to invest in the different sizes beforehand, and decide what size that high end axe will be in the future. I'll need to play them all regularly over a long period of time to come to terms with the sizing issue. It's not something I can decide in 15 minutes in a store. As time goes on, it is likely I will sell some of the ones I have, and collect more of the size(s) I play most.

As for skill level vs. instrument quality, I see nothing wrong with a beginner buying a great high end uke. The truth is, you can play one note on a great instrument and be able to appreciate the quality of the tone. Learning to listen for great sound is part of the learning process, along with the ability to manipulate the qualities of the sound. There's nothing more frustrating for a player on any level than having an instrument that sounds awful no matter how much they practice. The way I see it, UAS helps to support the industry, and makes playing more enjoyable. It's all good.

When I first signed on as a member, I couldn't really understand why people had their ukes listed in their signature lines. But then as I made purchases, I realized the instrument listings made it possible for me to ask questions of members who had ukes I was considering buying. It all suddenly made sense to me then, so I listed mine too. I've come to enjoy seeing people's lists.

TG&Y
01-23-2014, 02:56 AM
Judgmental? I didn't get that in any of these posts (except possibly this one). I too think it's interesting to see and hear what ukuleles folks own, and I'm enjoying hearing them musing about why in this thread.


This is a ukulele bulletin board. It is one of the few places where a person can list the ukes they own and it means something to the rest of the members. I don't think there is any problem with listing the number of ukes in your signature block, but I just can't be bothered finding them all and typing out a list. I think there is a problem with looking at what someone else has in their signature block and feeling envious or judge-mental because it is not the same as what you have. Most members here do not grow the ukes on trees, they work hard to get the cash to buy their instruments, mostly while supporting dependents and domestic situations.

haole
01-23-2014, 05:41 AM
At least a few of the top custom builders on here have remarked that it makes them a little sad to see one of their instruments still in perfect condition years later. Ukes are made to be played. :B

greenie44
01-23-2014, 06:26 AM
Funny on the question of quality ukes and beginners. Although I thought my first real uke - a Lanikai 6-string mahogany tenor - was a very high quality uke (compared to the toys I had picked up before), after a couple of years I allowed myself to step up in quality - first to a Kanile'a and then to a Collings.

To me, the Collings is as good as it could possibly get. But then I saw a posting in the marketplace for a uke that was specifically compared to a Collings and supposedly put it to shame. Ah, be still my UAS.

I guess this is relevant in that I may have appreciated the Collings when I started playing, but I didn't feel any lack before I got it. For this reason alone I would think it makes sense to start with a medium quality uke.

janeray1940
01-23-2014, 07:53 AM
I think there is a problem with looking at what someone else has in their signature block and feeling envious or judge-mental because it is not the same as what you have.

Yes, this, but unfortunately, I think comparison is a basic part of human nature for many people. When I still had my ukes listed in my sig, I got some rather... interesting PMs, ranging from questioning if my talent warranted high-end ukes, to questioning my financial situation, to disparaging comments about my luthier of choice, and even once an accusation that one of my ukes was stolen.

Until that happened, it never occurred to me that others would be judgmental or envious upon reading my list of ukes, but - there you go. It certainly never bothers me to see what others have listed; I find it interesting and at times have found it useful when considering a uke purchase.

PereBourik
01-23-2014, 08:18 AM
I play all my 'ukulele. Though none of them are investment-grade, some of them are pretty good. I can imagine that I might reach a place where sale is necessary. I can't actually imagine that crisis. If I had to liquidate I know that they have value to players and I could recover some of my cost. I don't think of them as collectibles with an eye to increasing value.

RichM
01-23-2014, 08:32 AM
Yes, this, but unfortunately, I think comparison is a basic part of human nature for many people. When I still had my ukes listed in my sig, I got some rather... interesting PMs, ranging from questioning if my talent warranted high-end ukes, to questioning my financial situation, to disparaging comments about my luthier of choice, and even once an accusation that one of my ukes was stolen.


Wow! That's awful. Nothing like that has ever happened to me. I do occasionally get PMs from people who are interested in my experience with this brand or that brand, or want me to compare one uke to another. These interchanges spark interesting conversations that I really value.

I'm a collector by nature, and I have a small number of things I'm very passionate about. I love comics and cartoons, so I have a lot of animation art and original comic book art. I love music, so in addition to musical instruments, I've also collected antique phonographs and early music. And my musical instruments are not limited to ukes, I'm also neck-deep in guitars, mandolins, banjos, and basses. I play everything I own, and while my skills vary from instrument to instrument, I take great joy in my musical options.

I don't smoke, drink, ski, golf, or any of a myriad of other expensive habits. What little discretionary cash I have goes into objects that are both very beautiful and can make beautiful music. And virtually all musical instruments retain some value, so if I ever feel the need to turn my collection into cash, I can do it reasonably quickly. It's the sanest thing I can think of, really.

RyanMFT
01-23-2014, 09:17 AM
I am passionate about collecting, and I play my vintage ukes. I really never buy one as a wall hanger, but always with the intention to play it, or make it playable. I get a great deal of pleasure from owning a wonderful ukulele for a period of time. I know all my vintage ukes have long outlived their owners, and if I have anything to say about it, they will outlive me and hopefully be enjoyed by someone else down the line.

The way I collect is focused on having an example of many different wonderful vintage builders, and I love to feel and hear how different they are from one another. Consequently, my collection goes back to the late 1890's and up through the 1960's. I have most of them in one room on hangers, and it brings me such joy to play one in that room, and suddenly mute the uke I am playing, and listen to all the others singing along! There is a lot of fun in the hunt and the discovery of what comes up along the journey.

For me, the whole thing is ukulele....playing, collecting, searching, cleaning, repairing, stringing.

Freeda
01-23-2014, 09:22 AM
I usually have somewhere around a half dozen of them. I like the different sounds, and like having the ability to lend them out.

JamieWG
01-23-2014, 09:31 AM
............

I don't smoke, drink, ski, golf, or any of a myriad of other expensive habits. What little discretionary cash I have goes into objects that are both very beautiful and can make beautiful music. And virtually all musical instruments retain some value, so if I ever feel the need to turn my collection into cash, I can do it reasonably quickly. It's the sanest thing I can think of, really.

So true! When it comes to addictions, UAS has to be among the safest and sanest of the lot. And they don't even take up a whole lot of space. :)

greyghost
01-23-2014, 11:10 AM
I

I used to list mine in my sig, but... I dunno, it started to sort of remind me of the uke equivalent of wearing designer clothes or driving a fancy car or any other status-seeking behavior, and as that was definitely not my intention, I decided that how many and what kind of ukes I play really wasn't relevant to my identity on this forum. I'll mention what they are if the context warrants it, but no need to broadcast "how cool I am" because of the kinds of ukes I play :)

I just enjoy trying out a lot of different instruments, each with their own feel and sound. If you read over my signature, however, you'll find that if anything, I am broadcasting just how UNcool I am...

cb56
01-23-2014, 12:37 PM
I probably have 5 or 6 hammers in my house but I don't consider myself a hammer collector.
Ukes? I have 4 ukes, a couple 4 string tenor guitars tuned uke, a bass guitar, a banjo, a dobro. They all get played.
Because they do, none of them are in collectable condition. Who's to tell someone else what they can or can't get? If you're feeding your family and the bills get paid, buy all the ukes you want!

TG&Y
01-23-2014, 02:44 PM
Feeding the family first is a prerequisite for buy ukulele? Uh-oh...


I probably have 5 or 6 hammers in my house but I don't consider myself a hammer collector.
Ukes? I have 4 ukes, a couple 4 string tenor guitars tuned uke, a bass guitar, a banjo, a dobro. They all get played.
Because they do, none of them are in collectable condition. Who's to tell someone else what they can or can't get? If you're feeding your family and the bills get paid, buy all the ukes you want!

kohanmike
01-23-2014, 08:03 PM
Maybe I do need to call myself a collector, although I do play all the ukes I buy. UAS has me strong, I'm just bidding on a very interesting uke, I call it a mandolele, beautiful design; solid spruce top, solid maple back, sides and neck, koa head. If I win the bid I'm going to add a preamp/pickup and black strap button.

http://www.fairfax67.com/images/u9 Mando-Uke.jpg

janeray1940
01-24-2014, 05:17 AM
With regard to UAS - I had the interesting experience of going to NAMM for the first time yesterday and was wondering beforehand if I'd come away with a bad case of the "wants." I'm happy to say that I didn't - what I came away with was the confirmation that I don't really want/need anything beyond what I already have!

Oh, there were a lot of ukuleles... and the truth is, we hardly even bothered to look at most of them. I'm certainly not tempted by the overseas-made factory models at all, and while there are a few higher-end ukes that would be nice to have (spruce top Kamaka Ohta-San, National Style 2 Resonator, Kiwaya Master Series concert, or another DaSilva custom), I'm not in any hurry to start saving my pennies.

flailingfingers
01-24-2014, 05:43 AM
"To me, the Collings is as good as it could possibly get. But then I saw a posting in the marketplace for a uke that was specifically compared to a Collings and supposedly put it to shame. Ah, be still my UAS."

I saw the same posting. I take those "reviews" with a grain of salt. The fellow selling wants you to buy his uke…. and by comparing it to another uke he tries to set the bar. IMHO it means nothing in terms of real comparison.

I have learned much by reading this thread. Had my mind changed a number of times. Love the forum. Thanks all.

wickedwahine11
01-24-2014, 05:47 AM
I think I am both a quasi-collector and a player. Not a very good player, mind you, you I'm not Jake or Brittni, and never will be. But I play well enough to keep me happy.

As for a collector per se, no, not in the way people collect baseball cards or stamps or something. None of my ukes were bought just to check off a category or fill my wall. I have had three Holy Grail ukes in my lifetime that I have sought: a Kanilea island inlay premium tenor, a KoAloha curly koa tenor and a Moore Bettah. I've been fortunate enough to attain two of the three, and won't give up on my pursuit of the third.

That being said, I now live under a one uke in, one uke out policy. So if I am ever fortunate enough to get a Moore Bettah, than one of my current ukes has to go.

Do I play them all? No. But they all have sentimental meaning for me. I'm holding onto one for my niece and each of the others brings special memories for me.

There is a scene in the movie "Princess Kaiulani" (about the fall of the Hawaiian monarchy) where the princess says she collects seashells and each one has a memory or memories attached to it. When she looks at or touches that particular shell, those memories are alive for her. It is like that for me with some of my ukes. I never ever play my Kamoa Kauai built uke, but it has a great deal of meaning to me because it was built in Kauai. I don't play my Kanilea as often as my KoAloha, but the Kanilea was an anniversary present so it makes me think of my spouse.

As far as I'm concerned, as long as nobody is causing their family to go without, or resorting to illegal means to acquire uke funds, it is all good. Play one and cherish it, collect dozens because they make you happy. Different strokes for different folks.

therinkydinktink
01-24-2014, 05:48 AM
At least a few of the top custom builders on here have remarked that it makes them a little sad to see one of their instruments still in perfect condition years later. Ukes are made to be played. :B

If they'd all like to send me a custom uke each I'll be happy to make them happy! ;)
(PM for address) :rolleyes:

Papa Tom
01-24-2014, 12:06 PM
>>>>I probably have 5 or 6 hammers in my house but I don't consider myself a hammer collector.<<<<<

I love this answer! It says exactly what I was trying to say, only much better.

I have a set of tools for upstairs, a set of tools for the basement, a set for the garage, a set for the car, and a set at work. This is just because they are cheap enough to buy several for my convenience.

At home, I keep a uke upstairs, a uke downstairs, and another for traveling. As I mentioned in another post, I will probably end up with one more for work and one more for my car (a workulele and a carkulele). This, too, is just because they are cheap enough to buy several for my convenience.

bigpoi789
02-18-2014, 06:54 PM
Hi NOTLguy! Good Question.... I guess I'm both a collector and a player.

First off I have to say I am Blessed to lived in hawaii where the ukuleles are so Abundant and sometimes so amazingly affordable (even the prestigious ukulele makers ukes sometimes show up on craigy's or at the swap meet for crazy ridiculous low prices) that it would only make sense to be both.

For the collector in me what really fires me up is the hunt. Whether you find them at the swap meet, garage sales, craigslist, pawn shop, ebay etc...For a UAS addict its like finding gold in a stream by your house. It feels so unreal.

For example imagine finding a vintage Kamaka pineapple gold label at the swap meet for $160.00 or a Vintage martin soprano styles 2 for $350.00. That was just last week.( by the way I had to pass on the Kamaka cause I already owned one.)

For the player in me its much more simpler, I guess I love the sound it makes and how it makes me feel when I pick it up after a hard days work.
its sound comforts me and takes the stress all away. Just an hour playing would make me feel super good and naturally high.

It Might be for its looks or its sound, but one thing is for sure, is the Joy it brings me and When its all said and done i know I love this little instrument for all that it is.

I hope my thoughts gives you some insight of UAS addict. .... ALOHA!

Bao
02-18-2014, 07:06 PM
My ukes all serve a purpose. I've got a baritone for when I'm missing that good old guitar tone.
My main tenor for plugging in to perform and for high G songs.
My second tenor without a pickup for low G and acoustic performances
My guitarlele for if I need lower tones to play.
My soprano to travel light.

Teek
02-18-2014, 07:42 PM
Trying to get narrowed down the right sound(s) thus size(es), wood(s) & combination(s) thereof, then after thinking I have done that to some extent after multiple purchases and resales and after some practice in RL, realizing I'm still covered up in ukes because I like so many different variations on the sound: punchy bright soprano (which only has 12-14 frets usually and a cramped fretboard) thus making a concert more comfortable, then realizing I truly love the tenor voice best, thus wanting one in a low 4th tuning, one reentrant, loving 6 strings so one of those, and an electric. Then I can't sell the concerts because it's my beloved custom and a lovely white label Kamaka (both being easier to play when my arthritis flares) or the bari as it is a gifted family heirloom, or the other bari because it only cost me around $80 and sounds phenomenal and is a rarer 19" scale, or the wallhangers becaue they are so much fun to look at hanging on the wall.... so, it's a disease. As long as nobody is being hurt or inconvenienced it doesn't need a cure.

clayton56
02-18-2014, 10:20 PM
part of it was the learning process; I ordered ukes I was interested in and learned the differences. Now I know what I like. I sold a good uke, Koaloha, because it just wasn't my style. But it took playing it for a year or so to decide this. My latest ukes are my favorites, Ko'olau, but I experimented there too, with different wood combinations. I think the Ko'olau are "my sound".

Another thing I found out is some ukes like different tunings. So I have them tuned to C, C#, and D, and this can come in very handy.

I have played banjo and guitar before this, and once I settled on one type, lost interest in others and sold them off. This may happen with much of my uke collection, but I will probably still keep a variety of ukes.

NewKid
03-15-2014, 12:08 PM
I'm now in Phase II UAS, where I've figured out what I like and don't like in an instrument. So my collecting has slowed considerably and I'm really happy with the instuments I've kept. But ukes are just so fun. Last week my uke group had "Banjo Uke Night". Everyone brought their banjo uke and I got to try four different models and it was so much fun to play old-timey songs on these instruments.

Jere Canote has a couple of beautiful concert banjo ukes for sale here in Seattle at Dusty Strings and in the midst of my banjo uke research I discovered Spanky Banjo Ukes by Phil Morris and Dan Fobert out of Texas. So before last week, banjo ukes were not even in my consideration set. Now they are and I feel richer for it.

Shady Wilbury
03-15-2014, 12:13 PM
I consider myself a player, and now I've had my tenor uke restrung, I will rotate between three regular players. My original soprano ukulele has friction tuners, which I could not, and still cannot, master. The Mahalo 'Flying V' (I can hear the laughter from here) was a gift from a friend, but is sadly unplayable. You might say I have everything I need, but I still yearn for a resonator, even though the thought of changing strings gives me hives. Really interesting to read others' responses and reasoning, though.

pixiepurls
03-15-2014, 12:48 PM
Humans are by nature collectors. Ask any knitter to show you their "Stash" of yarn which 90% they probably don't knit and will never knit with. There are swaps on knitting sites so knitters can get rid of old (but good quality yarn) and trade for something different and new.

Shoes, no one needs 20 pairs of shoes, but loads of people have that many or more.

Purses.... hats.... coats.... humans collect everything. We are like squirrels stuffing our nest full of whatever we find that we like :)

There is a show called Hoarders, it is the extreme of that human quality.

Collecting anything is fun, some people love a certain animal like a turtle and collect turtle "things" and if they happen to like ukulele's they probably look for one with a turtle on it lol.

I think its very natural for us, it just has to be done in moderation and then its important to realize when you have too much and de-stash.

pixiepurls
03-15-2014, 12:48 PM
Humans are by nature collectors. Ask any knitter to show you their "Stash" of yarn which 90% they probably don't knit and will never knit with. There are swaps on knitting sites so knitters can get rid of old (but good quality yarn) and trade for something different and new.

Shoes, no one needs 20 pairs of shoes, but loads of people have that many or more.

Purses.... hats.... coats.... humans collect everything. We are like squirrels stuffing our nest full of whatever we find that we like :)

There is a show called Hoarders, it is the extreme of that human quality.

Collecting anything is fun, some people love a certain animal like a turtle and collect turtle "things" and if they happen to like ukulele's they probably look for one with a turtle on it lol.

I think its very natural for us, it just has to be done in moderation and then its important to realize when you have too much and de-stash.
I am not a guy so I can't speak for what men collect but I have met men who collect photography equipment, guitars, hats, dice, games etc.

igorthebarbarian
03-15-2014, 12:58 PM
^ This thread made me think of the TV show on A&E "HOARDERS" too! (I think it might be discontinued though / no new episodes recently)....
I have started giving away extras/ lesser-valuable ones to friends who have expressed even the slightest inclination of taking up the uke.
I am also considering dropping/leave-behind'ing a few lesser valuable ones at my relatives house who live in different states. Then if I'm on vacation, there's a uke already there ready to play!

drbekken
03-16-2014, 11:02 PM
Apart from playing the ukulele, I am a pianist. I have two acoustic pianos and two digital pianos. Thank heavens I do not suffer from PianoAqusitionSyndrome. That would be something.
When it comes to ukes, I always enjoy seeing what instruments others play and like. Personally, I have bought ultra-cheapos, but I have settled with a Martin OXK soprano (not that cheap), a Rogue soprano (cheap, indeed) and a Rogue baritone (yes, it's cheap). That will do, I suppose. The other cheapos, I have given away. I hope instruments which are part of a collection will be put to use. I think as a serious collector, you almost have an obligation to make sure people get to hear the sounds. Nothing is sadder (in a musical reality) than silenced instruments.

katysax
03-17-2014, 05:49 AM
Just this morning I was looking at the "too" many ukes that I own, and thinking that I play almost all of them quite regularly. Buying ukes can be tempting because great bargains abound.

PhilUSAFRet
03-17-2014, 05:55 AM
Whatever one has to call it to feel ok about having so many ukes, LOL

icuker
03-17-2014, 11:13 AM
I haven't read this whole thread, so, sorry if I am being redundant. Two reasons for so many ukes. They don't take up a lot of room and aren't terribly expensive on the low to moderate end and there are four major categories to boot! (whoops that's three....my inability to count must have something to do with my UAS).