Fender has unveiled the Dhani Harrison signature ukulele. It is the first collaboration between Fender and the multi-instrumentalist/composer, and complete with an onboard pickup and preamp it offers a stage-ready proposition for uke players.
Tenor-sized with a three-quarter body depth, and available in a choice of Blue Sapphire and Turquoise stain finishes, Harrison's signature uke has a solid ovangkol top with laminated ovangkol on the back and sides. These tonewood choices should give it a warmer, rounded tone,
It is not every day you see a ukulele with a pickup and preamp system but that's all part of the plan, with the Fender electronics system designed to make work gangbusters for live performances and find its place in a mix. The preamp is mounted on the instrument's shoulder and has controls for tone and volume, plus an onboard tuner.
Each of the finish options has its own distinctive inlays on the walnut fingerboards, with custom engravings on the rear of each uke. On the headstock – which pleasingly matches the top's finish – you'll find some sealed nickel tuners. Elsewhere, there is a walnut bridge and bone nut, a scale length of 17", and a 35mm nut width that's ideal for kids.
Harrison says he hopes the ukulele will bring joy to those who play it, particularly children learning their first stringed instrument. After all, from the uke, it's just a hop and a skip to the guitar.
“We wanted to make it accessible,” said Harrison. “It’s the best thing for kids to learn when they’re learning rhythm and chord structure, because they’ve got little hands. I always found it hard playing big guitars when I was a kid, so I played a lot of ukuleles.“
Priced £229 / $279, the Dhani Harrison Signature Ukulele is out now. See Fender for more details.