The extra man

Robert Harper

So I have gone and done it I have bought myself a Ukulele. It is a Ohana Vita, a model made famous by Roy Smeck in the 30's I believe.

It was delivered from Berlin in Germany but was made in China. It is also known as the "clapping seal" model since the soundholes resemble seals at a circus.

It was as cheap as chips but regardless the whole instrument is made out of wood.
I think I fell in love with it for its shape and of all the ukulele videos on youtube the Ohana Vita had the sweetest tone.

So why buy a ukulele? Well It was all Big Al Davis's fault. He made me do it, when I heard him performing a Peter Sellers song.

It seems to me that the Ukulele is made and designed to play happy music, but if you follow the Bosko and Honey Ukulele Safari you realise that it belongs to a musical subculture within Europe.

Perhaps the most well know Ukulele player from the UK was George Formby whose songs were a little bit risque, George Harrison of Beatles fame was a great fan of Formby.

However when it comes to the home of the Ukulele then you have to go to Hawaii and perhaps the most famous and "biggest" exponent was Iz

This model of Ukulele is called Ohana which I understand to mean "Family" or no one gets left behind. That is a good thought since having bought it I will now have to learn to play it.

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