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Thread: Violin-Uke

  1. #1
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    Default Violin-Uke

    A friend of mine sent me these snaps of an instrument he was shown in a museum near Groningen, Netherlands yesterday.

    Looks more like a zither or psaltery to me, apparently it's played with a bow, but it's called a "uke" so I thought some here might find it interesting

    Violin-Uke 1.jpg

    Violin-Uke 2.jpg
    There are those who will wax lyrical about the ability to play a double shuffle with a split fan and a tight G-string ...
    it just makes me walk funny!

  2. #2
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    Looks like a bowed psaltery to me. The shape has been modernized over the years, but the playing concept for the pictured "violin uke" is still the same. You bow between the metal pins to play each note. Thanks for sharing your friends pictures with us.
    Jan D
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  3. #3
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by kypfer View Post
    A friend of mine sent me these snaps of an instrument he was shown in a museum near Groningen, Netherlands yesterday.

    Looks more like a zither or psaltery to me, apparently it's played with a bow, but it's called a "uke" so I thought some here might find it interesting

    Violin-Uke 1.jpg

    Violin-Uke 2.jpg
    I'd like to know the year it was made. I think "uke" is just a coincidence.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  4. #4
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    A bit of on-line searching comes up with this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukelin dating it to the '20's ... part bowed psaltery, part strummed zither (like an autoharp but without the chord bars)

    A solution looking for a problem
    There are those who will wax lyrical about the ability to play a double shuffle with a split fan and a tight G-string ...
    it just makes me walk funny!

  5. #5
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    They were sold door to door for awhile and advertised as a way to play violin without having to learn to play violin. I've never seen anyone play one well, not even on Youtube.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/hoosierhiver

    UWC: no shirt, no shoes, no problem..

    Ukes questions should be emailed to mike@mainlandukes.com

    I know Gary Yoshida.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoosierhiver View Post
    They were sold door to door for awhile and advertised as a way to play violin without having to learn to play violin. I've never seen anyone play one well, not even on Youtube.
    That's just strange. It has so many extra strings it seems it would be easier to pick up the fiddle.

  7. #7
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    I've got one. Apparently, they were made as recently as the 1950s.

    And no, I neither can, nor have ever tried to, play it - my sister found it at craft show, and bought it for me. It is sitting in the attic bedroom, next the the bagpipe chanters, and an Erhu.

    -Kurt
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hoosierhiver View Post
    They were sold door to door for awhile and advertised as a way to play violin without having to learn to play violin. I've never seen anyone play one well, not even on Youtube.
    For those who are curious what they would like




  9. #9
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    Jul 2017
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    Interesting instruments! We've been thinking o taking a stab at violin, but haven't yet.

    BTW, If you are want them they are available at good prices on Ebay;

    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...ukulele+violin
    Playing my Magic Fluke and grinning like a fool!

  10. #10
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    May 2010
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    Gregg Miner has a great 2cd with Christmas instrumentals played on rare and antique stringed instruments. It's not only very good to listen to, but also has lots of info on the actual instruments (including several ukuleles). And it features this ukelin/violin-uke and its siblings Zitho-Harp (two interwoven zithers), Marxophone (a zither with a piano keyboard)) and Tremoloa (four chords, one harmony string but played with a pantograph-style slide bar). Fiona Apple and K.D. Lang used them in recordings as well.

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