What is an unpopular/controversial opinion you have regarding the ukulele?

I got nothing, but I'll make one up for this thread:
If it ain't Hawaiian and koa (real koa from Hawaii, not that phony acacia stuff) it ain't an ukulele (no matter how you pronounce it!).
😲o_O😡🙄:LOL::ROFLMAO:
 
I got nothing, but I'll make one up for this thread:
If it ain't Hawaiian and koa (real koa from Hawaii, not that phony acacia stuff) it ain't an ukulele (no matter how you pronounce it!).
😲o_O😡🙄:LOL::ROFLMAO:
With all the thousands made, don't tell Martin!
 
Every tenor ukulele I’ve played I prefer in a different tuning to gCEA (high G). It might be dropped down to Bb6 or with a low G for instance - but it sounds nicer to me in a slightly lower pitch.
Agreed! I posted a video in this forum here, a while ago, comparing Bb6 to C6 tuning, quoting from the (& much-missed), Dirk Wormhoudt aka 'southcoastukes', who knew more about this topic than anyone else ever.

If you have the time & inclination, do check out his South Coast Ukulele & Guitar Company: Guide to tuning and strings
 
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Just thought of another potentially controversial preference that I have. In addition to satin necks and radiused fret boards, I really like to have fret markers on the top, not just the side. Preferably 3, 5, 7, 10, and 12. I play up the neck a fair bit and need all the visual references I can get.
A lot of the high end custom builders go for that minimalist look on the FB in recent years.
My Kinnard (favored child) has zero fb markers.

Maybe that helps to force learn the fb a bit.
I don't think about it anymore because of how great the Kinnard is... one of my favorite things is to experiment with chord forms, arpeggios, solo lines/riffs in all positions.
 
Ukes aren't necessarily happy instruments. They are as happy as a tuba, a mellotron or a triangle. With an ounce of talent, one should be able to convey the range of emotions on a ukulele. It's not the instrument, it's the player. Uke players are no more happy than anyone else for that matter.
 
Just remembered my initial posts here had to do with Custom vs Production tenors... a controversial topic.
I still believe there's vital difference in tone (although the price differential isn't in line with the benefit) I will pay the stiffer price for that relatively small scale of improvement in tone... to a degree of course (my finances).
Tone is the King of factors in a great tenor.

The price of a Chuck Moore tenor (regardless of aesthetic) case in point.
In this decade Kinnard does it for me.
I don't have enough chances to play them all but looks like Kanilea has really kicked things upwards.
 
Risa Solid Tenor stick is the best uke. Best for quite practice & travel. Then plug it into an amp to get your jam on. I'm not sure many would agree...🤷
 
I believe likes and comments on online videos should be doled out sparingly to exceptional content only as interpreted by the viewer/listener because it helps identify what's worth our time and simultaneously values our time higher. Be it ukulele, or otherwise. "Smashing that like button" and posting comments solely for the sake of driving numbers up is counter productive to the natural order of "cream rising to the top".
I had a hard time deciding whether to give this post a like or not ;), but ultimately agree with it... as I think about "influencers" and look over towards central Europe :D
 
I was likely exposed to the ukulele by Tiny Tim. I do not know how he pronounced its name (and don't care).

But my personal exposure (and still largest influence) to the ukulele came when I visited Hawaii. And even when I first went they did not require a passport because they were already the 50th state of the USA. And everyone I encountered there spoke English!

They have anglicized many words from the Hawaiian language, including ukulele (which translate to "jumping flea", likely due to the music and sound generated when introduced in the 1800s). So as spoken by the Americans there, who speak fluent English as their native language, the instrument is mostly pronounced "ook-kalaylee" as the accepted norm.

So my unpopular viewpoint is that it is not okay and disrespectful to make fun of anyone who pronounces it that way. It is condescending to think your pronunciation is the best or only way and that "English speakers" do it your "correct" way.

Here's an unpopular one:
People who say Ookalaylee, when they are speaking English sound ridiculous. I can even hear it when they write. They call it "an" Ukulele. Ridiculous!!! Should only be pronounced that way by people fluent in Hawaiian...and I mean fluent. Otherwise, you sound silly.

No-one knows what "ukulele" really means. There is no 'correct' pronunciation of "ukulele."

John King: Haina ia mai ana kapuana
 
Maybe not controversial - or opinion - but it seems interesting to me that the ukulele seems like a long-standing instrument with a lot of history and tradition - only to find out that it was created relatively recently in only 1880 or so.
 
Maybe not controversial - or opinion - but it seems interesting to me that the ukulele seems like a long-standing instrument with a lot of history and tradition - only to find out that it was created relatively recently in only 1880 or so.
I'm honestly not fussed - it's a fun and very practical instrument that I can just strap on my back and take anywhere due to its small size and purely acoustic nature. I can't do that with an electric guitar.
 
Yep. Completely agree. I love its portability.
I just always thought it was older than it is.
It's such a youngun..... In a good way...
 
Ahh - I've always wanted to play a harp....
Go for it, MusicalApprentice. Rent one for a month and see what happens. They are easier to play than most people think. I bought my first harp in 1999, taught myself how to play it, and 24 years later, it’s still my main instrument. The uke is a versatile, happy instrument, for sure. But a harp can sooth the soul. Everything you play on a harp sounds beautiful - even mistakes. :)
 
Well, I certainly answered the brief! 😇
[Snip]... They have anglicized many words from the Hawaiian language, including ukulele (which translate to "jumping flea", likely due to the music and sound generated when introduced in the 1800s). So as spoken by the Americans there, who speak fluent English as their native language, the instrument is mostly pronounced "ook-kalaylee" as the accepted norm.

So my unpopular viewpoint is that it is not okay and disrespectful to make fun of anyone who pronounces it that way. It is condescending to think your pronunciation is the best or only way and that "English speakers" do it your "correct" way.
The late great John King who knew more about the history of the ukulele than anyone else ever conclusively demonstrated that the 'jumping flea' story is a foundation myth (one of five); first promulgated in the 1920s, & long after all the passing of those involved in the original transplantation of the little Madeiran chordophone to Hawaiian soil (it's all referenced in the link I provided).

So if you want to call our beloved little instrument a 'jumping flea, then by all means, honour the 'okina, but if you're not invested in this particular foundation myth, you're under no obligation to do so.

Rupert Brooke, who travelled extensively in what were then called the South Seas in the early years of the twentieth century, writes in his poem "Waikiki" (dated 1913) of the "eukaleli"'s "plangent... thrills and cries..." Brooke is obviously spelling phonetically & without reference to back-formations based on foundation myths, the pronunciation he heard when living on Waikiki in those years.

In 1919, also before the first publication of the "jumping flea" story, P.G. Wodehouse wrote of the "ukalele" (in Damsel In Distress).

No-one knows what "ukulele" really means. There is no 'correct' pronunciation of "ukulele."

John King: Haina ia mai ana kapuana
So I'll go further (!). There's no 'correct' spelling of ukelele either - the original spelling (1896) according to both Webster & the OED!

Think about it for a moment, if the original pronunciation had been "ook-kalaylee", wouldn't the earliest spellings reflected that pronunciation? The representation of vowel sounds in English hasn't changed that much in the past hundred years.
#ducksandruns
 
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