The History of the Ukulele

by Ukuleleria Providencia 25 September, 2020

The History of the Ukulele

Aloha! friends of the Ukulele brotherhood, in today's blog I want to tell you something that happened to me while I was studying music. Once my teacher asked me the history of my instrument and what was the name of each piece? After singing a lot, I decided to tell him that I didn't know the history, to which he replied: How do you call yourself a musician if you don't know the origin of your own instrument?

That feeling stuck with me and since then I promised that I would never go without investigating about the things I like. Today I want you to be excellent Ukulelists, and for that I will tell you something that you always have to keep in mind.

The history of the Ukulele

The Ukulele is a plucked string instrument (that is, its sound is due to vibration with the fingers) that finds its origin on the Island of Hawaii.

But to know how it was created, we have to travel to Portugal, back in the 23th century, when a British ship with migrants of various nationalities set sail for the new continent, and it was in Honolulu, Hawaii where it made landfall on August 1879. (look, my birthday haha) of XNUMX.

Among the crew members who disembarked was João Fernándes who was going with the intention of getting a better life. Well, this Portuguese musician traveled with a Cavaquinho, a 4-string instrument considered the older brother of the Ukulele.

When João got off the boat he began to play the instrument that immediately caught the Hawaiians who called it Ukulele, (Uku means flea and Lele jump) practically jumping flea due to its peculiar sound.

After the Portuguese fulfilled their working time in the plantations, some settled in Hawaii and dedicated themselves to the construction of furniture and instruments, such as the Cavaquinho and a very special one with a sweeter sound ... THE UKULELE.

It is not known who really launched the instrument for sale, nor who was the one who decided to call it that, we only know that it was around 1886 when we had the fortune to arrive at the moment of having this beautiful invention.

The official presentation was in 1889, on the British yacht Nyanza in the port of Honolulu. A trio of women, including Princess Victoria Kaiulani, did the honors.

How the Ukulele was linked to royalty by King Kalākaua and the last queen of Hawaii , that was built with Hawaii Koa wood and was a symbol of respect for the earth and nature, made the instrument an indisputable symbol of the island of Hawaii.


The Ukulele became popular around the world around the year 1920 when it was used by various artists to play jazz mainly, then in the 60's it had a second wind when artists like Hendrix and El Rey, Elvis Presley began to use it. .

Many artists today continue to introduce the Ukulele into modern culture, such as Paul McCartney, Madona, LP, Julieta Venegas, and Natalia Lafourcade ... just to name a few.


Well, there it is, they can't tell you more, now you know the history of the instrument that you are playing or that you are just starting to play, it never hurts to have a little culture about the things we like, we hope there is. enjoyed and share this new wisdom with your friends.


Ukuleleria Providencia
Ukuleleria Providencia


Guadalajara store team

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