Remember to click G+1 if you like a post... It will make me happy :-)

29 July 2012

Duelin' Ukes

A quick tune for you. It's me... playing on the Mark VIII Kingcaster! You will remember that this is the first design by the King Uke Ukulele Design Company.

A Taste of Everthorpe

I went for a stroll through Everthorpe and environs this morning. Here are a few snaps I took on my phone. I hope you like nature-type shots. If not, don't worry, I've sneaked in a few of my trademark abstract efforts too.

Everthorpe Sign - What are they doing to the poor man?

Kingcaster - Sneak Peak

I quite literally had a million requests asking for more information about how my Kingcaster electric ukulele sounds. Email traffic alone almost brought the servers down! So, in the interests of pacifying the angry mob, I've put together a very quick demo for you... a sneak peak... so to speak. Beautiful!

Kingcaster Ukuleles: Only available in Space!

27 July 2012

How to finish an electric ukulele build

Hell Yeah!!!

Regular readers of this blog will know that I'm building an electric ukulele... It's taken a long, long time. All along the way I've posted progress updates and shared with you the highs and the lows. Well, I'm coming to the end of my wonderful journey. This won't be my last post on the subject, but it will probably be the last on the actual build itself. My last series of updates revolved around some frustrations I was having with the paint job and of course I'd forgotten to fit the fret markers! I bet you're wondering how it all turned out. Read on...

24 July 2012

King Uke Ukulele Designs

Be not afraid of greatness; some are born great, some achieve
greatness, and others have greatness thrust upon them
William Shakespeare

I always knew I had it in me. I just didn't know when it was going to emerge. This weekend I decided to come to the aid of fellow ukateer AWOL. He's got the uke-building bug and is looking for ideas for his first project. We got chewing the fat and he started to tell me of his ideas for a uke that he can play quietly to practice and loudly to impress the chicks (okay, he didn't quite use those exact words).

18 July 2012

Day by Day Armageddon: Beyond Exile (2009)

By day J L Bourne is an American navy officer. By night he is a crack zombie author. Or at least he was the last time I Googled him.

Marine Zombie

15 July 2012

Stake Land (2009)

I came to Stake Land knowing a little bit about the film... but only a little bit. I’d heard it described as an apocalyptic vampire film. As you know, I can take or leave the vampires, but apocalyptic, well, that’s a whole different plasma pack.

Uh oh! Here comes trouble!
Stake Land, Metrodome 2009

How to fit fret markers

So I'm building an electric ukulele... and I'm making all sorts of mistakes along the way.

This might have been an interesting fret marker

In my last post I revealed that I had "forgotten" to fit the fret markers - the little dots that are strategically inlayed into the fretboard. I should have done this before I hammered home the fret wire so that I could have sanded and smoothed to perfection without risk of damaging the frets. I didn't and that's just the way it is unfortunately. Here's how I recovered...

14 July 2012

A Taste of Yorkshire

From time to time I like to stick together a few abstract photos for you. Here is the latest in the "A Taste of" series. All pictures were taken over the past week in and around York.

"Ad Hoc"

10 July 2012

How to paint an electric ukulele - Part 2

It's going to get worse before it gets better...

I'm not sure that I have the patience to be an expert painter. I'm not sure that I have a gentle enough touch to be an expert painter. In my last post I talked about some of the challenges I've been having painting the body of my electric ukulele. I'd had a bit of a nightmare with the undercoat, but things seemed to be looking up. I closed off having applied the red finish and having left the body to hang for 24 hours. Have you been wondering what happened next? Read on...

7 July 2012

Star Wars [abridged] (2012)

Unlike her brother, my daughter E-Uke's art has more of a cinematic feel to it. Around the same time that Goldman was being developed, E-Uke turned her hand to retelling Star Wars. We worked together on this to realise her dream. I love the simplicity.

The Goldman Omnibus (2012)

I stumbled across some old pictures and just felt I had to share them with you. My son J-Uke has decided that he wants to be a comic artist when he grows up. At the beginning of this year he got an idea into his head that he just couldn't put down. He invented this character called Goldman. From that point onwards it seemed that every piece of paper I turned over had Goldman on it. Little by little the Goldman world was unfolding before me and it was quite wonderful! Who can forget Stinky or the Graple huck 6000... or the Dark Wave! I love the colours. I love the ideas. I love Goldman. I love J-Uke!

Sadly, I think the days of Goldman have now gone... The Goldman era is over! Here's everything I've accumulated collected in one place. You might call it the Goldman Omnibus!

6 July 2012

50,000th Visitor

We love celebrating here at the Ukulele Blog! Earlier this week we hit an important milestone when we welcomed our 50,000th visitor to the blog! Who'd have thought we'd have lasted this long! Not me!

Having checked the stats I can now reveal the name of the 50,000th visitor. It is none other than our very own Darren from Brisbane! I flew out to Oz on Thursday to present him with a commemorative custom ukulele. What a guy... and what a uke!

Well done Darren. Thanks to you and everyone else who stops by. Your comments are appreciated. Let's see if I can keep the blog going for another month...

Darren from Brisbane is 'stoked' as he receives the coveted
Ukulele Blog Custom Uke

5 July 2012

How to wire up an electric ukulele (properly)

Earlier this week I heeded Daniel Hulbert's sage advice and decided to test out the wiring on my electric ukulele build. You will remember that I was being a right smart-arse refusing to test until I'd painted the body. Perhaps it was the paint fumes talking? What would you say if I was to tell you that having tested the bloody thing, that it wasn't working? Yeah, I know... what are the odds of that!

4 July 2012

Planet of the Apes (1963)

I've had a longstanding love affair with Planet of the Apes. I remember being terrified and fascinated by the films as a child. Later I collected the books and annuals from the films and watched the TV series. Much later I happened across an ancient copy a book in a charity shop that claimed to be the inspiration for the films. What! This was in the days before the internet and I was the only Planet of the Apes expert I knew! I had no idea that such a book existed. The book in question was of course Planet of the Apes by frenchman Pierre Boulle. I was in heaven! What a discovery!

Imagine a world not unlike our own...
Ape Gothic!

That was all a very long time ago. Very recently I got hold of another copy of this book and today I’ll tell you whether it has stood the test of time.

1 July 2012

How to paint an electric ukulele - Part 1

I'm back with another installment in my story about what it takes to build an electric ukulele. Pretty much all the fiddly stuff is done. In my last update I talked about wiring up the electrics. Daniel Hulbert has suggested that I check that it works before I go too much further. Thanks Daniel... I will do that soon... I promise! Not before I've painted the body though! Ha ha! Catch me if you can!

In search of inspiration...

I wasn't looking forwards to the wiring, and I haven't been looking forwards to the painting. I've done a bit of this before and the results were poor. Granted some of this was simply down to a lack of patience but I knew this time that I needed help. I hit Google+ hard and before I knew it the advice was flowing in thick and fast. Many thanks specifically to Gavin Scully and Jonathan Martin for your words of wisdom. I couldn't have done this without you guys! But before we start high-fiving let me reveal that this hasn't all gone according to plan. Let me explain...