Concert is the smallest size we make, the traditional ukulele. If you say the word Ukulele to an old timer... they hear Koa concert. Tenor is presently more popular, but these little beauties still have a big following. This one enjoys the finest woods, a dual veneered Ebony slotted Headstock, an adjustable bridge, Ebony fretboard, and a carved Wenge Tailpiece. It has a Fishman pickup hiding under the intonated saddle. Weighing in at just over one pound and a few ounces, it's as much a joy to play as it is beautiful to look at. Small of stature with a big voice, just like my Mother.
My Mother passed away as this uke was being built. I poured my love into it day after day, thinking of her. I had a client in Tokyo that I dearly wanted to impress. As the day neared to send her off, the lacquer suddenly developed some problems... I had to tell the client. He chose to wait while I went through the finishing process again, removing all to bare wood, and finally, it was ready to fly once more, or so I thought. Literally as I put it in it's case, I noticed yet another flaw! It simply would be unacceptable for this client, and, even though it was paid for and eagerly anticipated, I had to inform him that Isabelle was not ready yet again. I offered a full refund, and fell over myself with apologies. About that time, my father called, and I told him of my troubles; he laughed long and hard. He said " You know, your mother was deathly afraid of Asians in general, and especially the Japanese... we all were. Our generation was brought up that way, you understand. Pearl Harbor happened when we were nine years old. Of all the places your Mother would have liked to visit, Japan would not be on that list... you couldn't have taken her there in a straight jacket." Truly Mom, I did not know. So very sorry, both to her and to Tak, with whom I have e-mailed back and forth 30 times, and have found to be a kindred spirit and a friend. He was so very patient and understanding! In this small, small world, thankfully, times have changed for the better.
Now, Isabelle (the ukulele) stays at the Grand Wailea Hotel on Maui, a five star resort. I surely hope she finds the place acceptable. Love you Mom, Rest in Peace Although this is a show piece, some fine day it will find a new home with the right person, and get to make the beautiful music that it was intended for. My hope is that all of my instruments find hands that bring them to their true potential. Pretty is good, but they are born to sing, not to sit on a shelf!
All sentiments aside, yes, it is for sale... presently through the Na Pua Gallery, with whom I have a business relationship. It resides in a display cabinet on a rotating stand under the LED spotlights, and hopefully sends some custom orders my way. When the right client comes along, I would be happy that it has found a new home (and the custom Koa stand), and take it out of the display area at the Grand, IF- and when, I have a replacement available to replace it with. I cannot leave my best display opportunity ever...empty. Momma didn't raise no fools.
However, a custom Concert ukulele can be ordered with your story and personality stamped upon it... Curly Koa Prices start at about $4,000, while other woods are less expensive. Custom Stands are Available Also.
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