I check Craigslist once a day for ukulele sales. I got lucky last week when I discovered a local musician not only had two ukuleles for sale, they were both unique and handcrafted. I present to you my new banjo ukulele and cigar box ukulele.
Let’s start with the banjo ukulele because it’s the first instrument that caught my eye. The banjo ukulele is what Matte, the musician who built it, calls a “canjolele” because the head is made from a cookie tin can. Can + Banjo + Ukulele = Canjolele. It has a stained poplar neck and is 15″ long or so with an electric pick up and sounds tremendous through my Roland Microcube amp.
I went to Matte’s to buy the banjolele but ended up falling in love with a cigar box ukulele. The cigar box uke he listed had already sold so he made me this one just in time for my visit on Friday. It has a sealed poplar neck, an electric pick-up, and is around 15″ long. I’m actually even more excited about the cigar box uke than the banjolele, but I think that’s because I’m more familiar with its sound and am still figuring out fingering technique on the banjolele.
I have my mother’s old soprano uke from her high school days, the concert size uke she gave me for Christmas in 2005, my shiny black Lanikai electric concert uke, an Oscar Schmidtt baritone uke, and the gem of my collection, a Lanikai electric tenor ukulele. With these two new, handcrafted beauties becoming ukuleles #6 and #7, I truly have UAS – Ukulele Acquisition Syndrome.