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Tools for the Task: Soprano Ukes Under $300

Tools for the Task: Soprano Ukes Under $300

If you haven’t joined the ukulele craze, say “aloha” to these 10 sopranos and let the good times begin.

Kala

KA-SEM Exotic Mahogany
Mahogany is used for the neck, top, back, and sides of this soprano, which also features a GraphTech NuBone nut and saddle, an amber-satin finish, and a walnut fretboard.
$99 street
kalabrand.com  

CORDOBA

15SM
This uke’s all-mahogany construction is intended to deliver full, rich sound, and features include an abalone rosette, ABS binding, and a sleek satin finish.
$89 street
cordobaguitars.com  

LUNA

Vintage Mahogany with PreampOutfitted with a UK-T2 preamp and onboard tuner, this uke features mahogany for the body and walnut for the bridge and fretboard.
$99 street
lunaguitars.com  

MAGIC FLUKE

Flea
With 3-ply Australian hoop pine for the top and acoustically resonant thermoplastic for the body, these colorful ukes offer easy playability with plenty of personality.
$225 street
magicfluke.com
 

MAHALO

Java Series MJ1TBK-U
These ukes incorporate Indonesian rosewood for the fretboard and bridge, nyatoh for the arched-back body, and are outfitted with NuBone XB bridge saddles.
$42 street
mahalo-ukulele.com  

PONO

AS
Solid acacia for the top, back, and sides, and ebony for the fretboard and bridge compliment the rope-marquetry rosette and bone nut and saddle on this soprano.
$299 street
koolauukulele.com  

IBANEZ

UEWS5
The cutaway and C-shape neck makes for even easier access to all frets on this mahogany uke, while the abalone rosette and chrome open-gear tuners provide some nani.
$99 street
ibanez.com  

LANIKAI

SPST-S
This morado-body uke has a solid spruce top for good projection and punchy tone, and features include a NuBone XB nut and saddle.
$189 street
lanikaiukuleles.com  

ALVAREZ

AU90S
Utilizing a modified take on traditional fan-style bracing to optimize response, this uke also features a solid rosewood bridge and a bone nut and saddle.
$179 street
alvarezguitars.com  

GRETSCH

G9100
Pearloid dot inlays and open-gear tuners provide a classic look, while a genuine bone nut and saddle assist with resonance for this mahogany top, back, and sides uke.
$99 street
gretschguitars.com

While Annie Clark was named the 26th greatest guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone in 2023, she couldn’t care less about impressing an athletic stamp on either her sound or her image.


Photo by Alex Da Corte

On her eighth studio release, the electroacoustic art-rock guitarist and producer animates an extension of the strange and singular voice she’s been honing since her debut in 2007.

“Did you grow up Unitarian?” Annie Clark asks me. We’re sitting in a control room at Electric Lady Studios in New York’s West Village, and I’ve just explained my personal belief system to her, to see if Clark, aka St. Vincent, might relate and return the favor. After all, does she not possess a kind of sainthood worth inquiring about?

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U.S.-made electronics and PRS’s most unique body profile make this all-American S2 a feast of tones at a great price.

Many sonic surprises. Great versatility. Excellent build quality

The pickup selector switch might be in a slightly awkward position for some players.

$2,029

PRS S2 Vela
prsguitars.com

4.5
5
5
4.5

Since its introduction in 2013, PRS’s S2 range has worked to bridge the gap between the company’s most affordable and most expensive guitars. PRS’s cost-savings strategy for the S2 was simple. The company fitted U.S.-made bodies and necks, built using the more streamlined manufacturing processes of PRS’s Stevensville 2 facility, with Asia-made electronics from the SE line.

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A Gibson Explorer (left) and a Dean Z model.

In a legal battle over guitar body designs between Gibson and Dean, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the 5th circuit has ruled that Dean has the right to appeal an earlier decision by a Texas court, ordering Dean to stop selling guitars that Gibson says infringed on its iconic body shapes.

In a legal battle over guitar body designs between Gibson and Dean, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the 5th circuit has ruled that Dean has the right to re-try an earlier decision by a Texas court, ordering Dean to stop selling guitars that allegedly infringed on longtime Gibson body shapes, including Dean’s V and Z Series instruments, according to a report in Bloomberg Law published on Tuesday.

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Slash's Blues Ball Band Rig Rundown
Rig Rundown: Slash's Blues Ball Band with Tash Neal

The rock ’n’ roll icon brings his blues-rockin’ Orgy of The Damned to the people headlining the S.E.R.P.E.N.T. Blues Festival tour.

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