I've been playing lots of ukulele lately, it's a great sound that really lends itself to a surprising number of songs, from Bob Marley to U2 to The Beatles.... Since the concert ukulele only has 4 strings, it isn't possible to play all the parts in certain songs, like "Here Comes The Sun" or "Hotel California".... To accomplish this, I made a hybrid instrument with 6 strings, strung & tuned exactly the same as my ukulele. It's much smaller than a guitar, about the same size as a tenor ukulele, but the 2 added strings allow me to play all the parts, and still retain that beautiful ukulele "island-vibe"... It's got my favorite Fishman pickup built-in & it sounds incredible... Between these 3 instruments, I can play anything..... Here they are, all lined up & ready for work, at The Sea & Sand Resort in Laguna Beach
Sunset view of Santa Barbara after a recent gig at the Hilton Waterfront Resort
When I play a Beach Wedding, or a location without AC power, I bring a different set of equipment.....
I can use any one of my Acoustic / Electric guitars & ukuleles, and I have 2 battery powered amplifiers, Roland "Street Cube". I can plug a microphone and guitar or ukulele into this amp, with separate controls for each. This is an extremely portable & versatile system for smaller gatherings, in unique locations...
Here's a photo of a soundcheck at Pebble Beach !
Part of the fun is the guitars & all the toys..... I'm honored to be an official Taylor Guitars artist and to play Taylor Guitars at every performance & recording session. .... Bob Taylor has created some of the most incredible-sounding acoustic guitars I've ever played.... My main instrument is a 2013 Taylor custom drednaught Acoustic/Electric Guitar, equipped with a Fishman Presys Blend pickup system, and a wide variety of Roland and Fishman amplifiers for every application, from Beach Weddings with zero electricity to Concert venues for thousands of people... I can easily patch into any large-scale sound system using a single direct-box & microphone. I also use a Taylor GS-Mini guitar,. Larrivee C-09 handmade acoustic, Custom made Fender Telecasters, Fender Stratocasters and 2 Orangewood guitars for travel gigs, all equipped with the same Fishman pick-up systems.. For amplification, I use up to 3 Fishman Loudbox Mini's & 2 Roland Street Cubes, depending on the type & size of the venue. These particular set-ups provide exceptional sound for acoustic guitar and voice, requiring practically zero space.... I'm also very proud to be partnered with Joyo Effects, who provide me with exceptional signal processing pedals, to enhance the sound of my acoustic & electric guitars. Currently I'm using Joyo Digital Reverb & Digital Delay pedals for acoustic guitar, and Joyo Amp Modeling & Vintage Overdrive for electric guitar.... Thank You Joyo !
Here's my new Lanakai Koa Ukulele..... I use it for "Over The Rainbow", "Hey Soul Sister", "One Love" by Bob Marley, even some U2 & Beatles songs... It's got my favorite Fishman pick-up built-in, so I can play it through my amplifier, just like an acoustic/electric guitar.