Monday, October 28, 2013

Um ... Okay, I Was Mistaken ...

Adirondack Spruce/Tulip Magnolia

Okay, so I said I was done with UAS (ukulele acquisition syndrome), since I have two tenors that embody the opposite ends of the warm/bright spectrum.

I thought this was true. I mean, really, I did.

Here, the obligatory aside: One uke is rigged so I can plug it into an amp, and I have a mike I can use for the other, if need be. My electrification rig consists of a Roland Street Cube, a Shure SM 57 vocal/instrument mike, K&K pre-amp, and a couple of passive pick-ups; one in the uke, another is a transducer by Dean Markley I can stick to a guitar or uke with earthquake putty, and assorted cables twixt and tween.

I am endeavoring to lobby the jam group to add some electricity to its tool chest, too. I listened to the recordings of the last gig, and got some feedback from my spouse, and while the harmonies are nice and the instrument playing not too awful, the volume/mix is not so good. Could hardly hear some of the vocalists, and couldn't hear the harmonica at all. If everybody had a mike and even a micro-amp, that would be much better.

Back to the ukes: I thought I was done, truly I did. But, uh, well ... um ...

I came across a luthier named Michael Zuch, and lo! guess who is getting a third instrument in the jumping flea category?

This will be the last one. Really, it will.

For sure.


Maybe ...

It's a story, but suffice it to say, Mr. Zuch is building this critter for me. It'll be a while before I lay hands on it, but it has begun, and for those who follow such things in my posts, a few items of note:

It's another tenor, sound board will be made from Adirondack spruce, back and sides from tulipwood, with slot head tuners and a slightly wider-than-usual fretboard. 'Twill sport a sound port on the side of the upper bout, which is a second hole that allows the player to hear it better.

Zuch has built some fine instruments, but he's never done one with this wood combination, and I think that is maybe a little bit of the draw for him. He's a part-timer builder, and does it for love and not money. He mostly builds them for good players who need but can't afford handmade instruments, and while I'm not in either category, I was pleased no end that he agreed to do one for me.

The initial pictures are above, and as he progresses, if I get more images, I'll add them to the blog.

The current book-in-progress, my urban fantasy, Stemwinder, which features an itinerant blues guitarist who travels back and forth between Earth and Faerie, will have him dabbling with uke-ery in his gigs, by the by. This is also a labor of love on my part, will have a lot of musical stuff in it; plus some spying and murders and slavery and all.

Stay tuned …


steve-vh said...

Imagine if you were a drummer and all these cymbals and drums are available on ebay and craigslist? Just waiting for you to give them a home......

Dojo Rat said...

Addictive, eh?