CONTACT ME / ABOUT ME / PRESS

CONTACT ME / ABOUT ME / PRESS

If you have any queries about playing, buying, starting out with ukulele that this blog has not helped answer, do feel free to contact me on the email below. I'm also available to consider ukulele and accessory reviews as well as ukulele press comments related to the instrument.

Barry Maz Got A Ukulele Review


CONTACT

bazmaz@gotaukulele.com


ABOUT ME / GOT A UKULELE HISTORY / BIO

Got A Ukulele started back in 2009 as nothing more than a 'stream of consciousness' blog from a guy who had just started out with ukulele playing. I had been playing guitar for about 20 odd years at that point, then, like many music fans watched the film of the George Harrison memorial concert at the Royal Albert Hall. The final tribute was from George's old pal Joe Brown who, in recognition of George's famous love for the ukulele, played out the show on a ukulele. Mindblowing - I bought a uke the very next day.

This is where the germ of the website started though I didn't know it yet. You see, in my earlier years I had helped out in guitar shops with friends and spent a lot of time learning about setups and the tech side of guitars, both acoustic and electric (no ukes though!!). I learned in those years about how much work the cheaper instruments needed to get into shape and the pitfalls of buying blind - how you could end up spending more time and money on something 'cheap' in order to even make it work. So... what did I do with my first uke? Did I heed my own advice of 'if you buy cheap you will buy twice'? Nope. Of course not.. i'm an idiot.. 

I proceeded to buy the cheapest uke I could find. And why? Because at that time and still to this day to some extent the Press continued to run articles saying the ukulele was 'cheap and easy'...  A Mahalo arrived with a bridge in the wrong place and two of the frets mis-set. That thing could NOT be set up for a time cost that was worth the £25 outlay. It was simply a dead duck. I was stupid. Two days later I gave it to a charity shop (the bin would have been better) and bought a Magic Fluke Flea. I never looked back.

I started Got A Ukulele partly out of a bet with a friend that a 'blog about the ukulele will never take off' (it did Ian!) and partly to share my own experiences of instrument setup and buying advice honed in both my earlier years and that utterly stupid decision I made with my first uke. So I started writing.. and ranting..

The early years were mainly beginners posts, less about playing uke (I'm not a teacher - there are already sites for that i'd rather plug) but about owning and living with a ukulele and the many 'rants' about the nonsense advice that was (and still does) appear online. Most importantly, it was about what to look for when BUYING  a uke. All those guides are still on the website and expanded versions of them went into my book 'What Ukulele Players Really Want To Know', which I am proud to be able to say was, in one week the top selling music book on Amazon!

With the tips largely written and being updated less frequently I turned to some other articles I had worked on - reviews of my own instruments. The early ones were short and not much more than 'hey look at my uke' and I cringe at them now, but I started to develop them into a system that allowed them to be compared to others. Reader numbers grew and brands and stores started to realise that people were reading and offered to lend me instruments. It started small, with lots of pestering from me to distributors to lend me things.. but it started to grow.

12 years later we have what I believe is the largest number of independent ukulele review listings  (possibly the largest full stop?)  on the internet. And they just keep coming... Last year I reviewed more ukuleles than there are weeks in the year, and I suspect this year may be similar!

That word 'independent' is the backbone of this site. I do not want payment in cash or kind from brands to review instruments. Virtually every one that I borrow is sent back. On occasion (very occasionally) a brand will donate it to the site and I will then sell it and buy some more ukes for review. When the selling them on part is losing too much in each sale the ukes I am left with are donated to the local school or charity. It's not a perfect system, but the best I can make and it ensures the ukuleles don't become 'mine' as some sort of prize. This is the ONLY way to fairly review anything in my view. 

So there you have it - hundreds and hundreds of uke reviews. Tons of beginners tips and guides. The largest online uke club database I know of and an annual Uke Festival Calendar too.

That's Got A Ukulele!

Thanks for supporting, 

Baz x

p.s - Oh and if you are wondering about the name. The phrase is the first line in a song by one of my favourite songwriters, Loudon Wainwright III, called 'The Ukulele Song'. When I had my first uke I was immediately reminded of that and, being one of my favourite artists, named the site after his song. Yes, I know it doesn't scan with the Hawaiian pronunciation, but.... blame Loudon... You can get the chords here - https://www.gotaukulele.com/2016/10/the-ukulele-song-loudon-wainwright-iii.html


PRESS STATS as at JULY 2021

Site page views - 20,500,000
YouTube views - 6,600,000
YouTube subscribers - 24,200
Facebook Page followers - 14,700



GOT A UKULELE REVIEWS POLICY

Got A Ukulele has become one of the largest reference points for truly impartial instrument and product reviews worldwide. My reviews are a mix of instruments I have bought myself or had loaned to me by stores / brands / luthiers. I never review for money or freebies and I tell it like it is.

If you would like one of your instruments featured on the site - get in touch on the email above and I will explain more about how I work.

AFFILIATE LINKS /  ADS

You may have noticed that the Got A Ukulele site is monetised, and that is to help keep it going. The site though is actually run as a not for profit enterprise.  That is to say that revenue created through ads / affiliate links / kind donations from readers is put back into items to feature on the website. A portion of the ukuleles are bought by me to feature on the reviews through those donations. But that doesn't mean that I am blessed with lots of ukuleles (I personally own about six or seven). Those that are bought are then either donated to charity / local schools after review or are sold on and the funds used to source more ukuleles for review. I am not in this to create a huge ukulele collection - I dont have the space and nor would it be impartial! Therefore, one way or another, after they have helped contribute to the articles on the site, they eventually end up going to someone more needy.



Got A Ukulele is also a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Please Help Keep This Site Going!

If you enjoy this blog, donations are welcomed to allow me to invest more time in bringing you ukulele articles. Aside from the Google ads, I don't get paid to write this blog and for reasons of impartiality a not sponsored by brands or stores. Your donations all go back into the site to allow me to keep bringing you reviews, and in the end the ukuleles acquired are given to local schools and charities.