Archive for the History Category

Meet the Hawai‘i Family That Makes the World’s Most Famous ‘Ukulele

Posted in Articles, History on January 6, 2017 by unofficialkamakaukulele

Meet the Hawai‘i Family That Makes the World’s Most Famous ‘Ukulele

Or download it here


Kamaka family.

1916-2016 100 Year Anniversary

Posted in History with tags , on January 22, 2016 by unofficialkamakaukulele


kamaka100logoCongrats on your 100 year anniversary Kamaka!

Below is the headstock that will be on all 2016 models.  More info coming as it’s released.



Fred Kamaka Sr. A Candid Moment

Posted in History, Videos on September 6, 2012 by unofficialkamakaukulele

Trinimon, over at Ukulele Underground, posted this video he made of Fred Kamaka Sr. during the Kamaka Factory tour.  What I loved most about it were the moments you could see the love and joy Fred has for the instruments, and the history of this fine company.


Fred Kamaka – A Candid Moment from Carlton Chong on Vimeo.

PBS: Kamaka Heartstrings

Posted in History, Videos on May 21, 2012 by unofficialkamakaukulele

This has shown up on YouTube, wanted to repost it here.  A wonderful documentary on Kamaka Ukulele.

George Harrison

Posted in History on March 10, 2012 by unofficialkamakaukulele

George Harrison was a huge advocate for the ukulele.  He loved playing them, and even giving them away.  On one trip to Hawaii I was told a story that George would go around the island and buy all the Kamaka’s he could find (now I don’t know if it was a certain size he was after, or if he just bought any and all), and he would then give them away.

Below you’ll find a letter that George wrote on Flea Market Music letterhead about the ukulele as well as videos of George playing some of his Kamaka’s.

Eddie Vedder’s Kamaka HF-3

Posted in History, Photos on February 13, 2012 by unofficialkamakaukulele

I’ve had this ready to post for a little while, just got sidetracked.  Eddie donated his Kamaka HF-3 to benefit Ferry County Rail Trail Partners (FCRTP) a little while back, and they auctioned the ukulele off on ebay.

This ukulele sold for $17,100, anyone know what the most expensive uke ever sold was???

Here is the info, and photos from the auction:

“This Kamaka ukulele was purchased new from Dusty Strings music shop in Seattle by Pearl Jam’s lead vocalist Eddie Vedder. It was lightly used for a period by Vedder only and is now being auctioned to benefit Ferry County Rail Trail Partners (FCRTP). Vedder has been a longtime supporter of FCRTP and now you can become one too. The winner of this auction becomes a lifetime FCRTP member just like Eddie.

Bonus materials included: Eddie provided a hand written note as well as personal guitar picks and stickers that will accompany the ukulele.  In the note he states that this ukulele was used during the recording of his just-released solo CD Ukulele Songs. Also of note: The canoe photo with the [I  Ferry County] sticker was taken by FCRTP president Bob Whittaker during a recent visit with Vedder and the picture is featured prominently on the songbook. YES, this is this same ukulele in the songbook photo that is up for auction here. You can Google Ferry County Rail Trail to get to our website and see more details.
100% of the proceeds go directly to FCRTP, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located in northeast Washington State.  Their mission is:  To preserve the rail corridor for the long term economic benefit of Ferry County and create a non-motorized trail.”

Kamaka HF-3 serial no. 110387


Custom 1 Off Humuhumunukunukuapua’a Ukulele

Posted in History, Photos on February 3, 2012 by unofficialkamakaukulele

Here is one of the most beautiful Kamaka’s ever made.  It was a 1 off Custom that Casey built using an amazing set of Master Grade Koa.  The inlay work was done by Craig Lavin and features the Hawai’i state fish, the Humuhumunukunukuapua’a.

I got to see and play this while at the NAMM show this year, and it is an amazing instrument!

It is for sale at Hawaii Music Supply (one of my favorite ukulele shops), you can see more of it, and even buy it HERE.  I hope it finds a good home!