Ukuleles continue to increase in popularity as many songwriters are using them to write their original songs on instead of their favorite guitars. Some of this can be attributed to the portability a uke affords, and it’s also easier to find chords and fingerings on the instrument—you can capo them too.
American Songwriter received the new Fender Dhani Harrison uke for review and it is truly a stunner. Dhani is the son of the late Beatle, George Harrison, and he’s a creative instrumentalist and songwriter in his own right. In the family home, Dhani’s father was known for keeping ukuleles in his living room for friends to jam on when they came to visit. It appears that Dhani has carried on and extended this tradition with the new and unique Fender collaboration uke.
The finish on the body and headstock is Sapphire Transparent Blue (also available in turquoise) with visually arresting fretboard inlays and a carved face on the back of the tenor-sized body. Built-in electronics include volume, tone, built-in tuner, battery light, and an easy-to-access battery for quick replacements. Additionally, the headstock of the Dhani Uke is shaped like a miniature Stratocaster with a bit more tilt to keep the strings in the nut.
Some ukulele manufacturers go cheap and simple on the tuning machine heads, but this signature model has close-ratio chrome enclosed tuners for more accurate tuning and stability. Obviously, Dhani had a lot of input on all of the details for this model because the neck profile is the best of any ukulele I have played. It’s not too wide and not so small that you can’t chord on it easily.
The real bone nut adds to the tone as does the solid wood body, neck, and walnut fingerboard. I’m also a fan of the way Fender tastefully engraved Dhani’s signature into the back of the headstock. This uke is very easy and comfortable to play and it comes with a nice Fender custom gig bag. If you’re looking to upgrade your ukulele game, the Fender Dhani Harrison Uke should be on your consideration list. Whether you’re writing songs on it or just sitting on the back porch strumming, it is a great instrument value at only $279.99 (street price).
This is not a toy ukulele, it’s a quality-built instrument that will last for years.