Almost a mandolin – just, only better
8 String Ukulele – The Eclipse
Figured Maple top and back, Black Walnut sides, Paudouk grafting. The back is lifted off the sides in several spots to allow for sound; there is also a small sound hole figured into the players side upper bout. The neck joint with the body is a cascading waterfall joint. It goes into the body on one side and then comes up and flows over the top on the other. It’s called the Eclipse because the fretwork dot inlay of Maple and Paudouk cross at the 12th fret, creating a sort of eclipsed moment. A low g and a high g set of Aquila supergut strings really give this instrument an amazing voice. It can be played with a pick and worked like a mandolin, only smoother and warmer, or it can be finger picked like the little ukulele cousins.
*Much of the backing and lead work on my last two albums were done with this instrument. It’s soft and glowie while adding support and then it comes out and shreds some potatoes.
Ukulele 8 34 – 01/02
Myrtle. This ukulele was built side-by-side with another ‘same’ 8-string ukulele in an effort to bring the process to book. Yes, book.
From the slimmest piece of Myrtle wood was brought to size two matching tops each with four pieces. Slim doesn’t make statement stand out in the same manner as it was presented to us. There is no room for error were the thoughts I clung to. Luckily, error is the very thing that makes one of these instruments have the soul and life it does. Give it hell then.
The back and sides on this ukulele are Koa wood. Still my favorite. The grafting used was Juniper that had been milled from dead straggly chunks picked up from the ground at my home. I’m not going to word smith too many more words, so just look at it.
*8 string ukuleles can be strung up in a variety of ways, each of which are outstanding. There are even string sets that a person can acquire to better accommodate these tunings.