Dhani Harrison has carved out a unique career as a prolific multi-instrumentalist, composer and songwriter, and his take on the ukulele is no different.
Designed by Fender, the preamp features separate volume and tone controls, as well as a built-in tuner.
This tenor ukulele features a ¾ body depth, which gives it unique tonal characteristics.
Chosen by Dhani, his signature ukulele’s unique aesthetics include symbols that personally inspire him.
In a world full of musicians, Dhani Harrison is undoubtedly prolific.
He has composed scores for movies, television programs and video games. He boasts an extensive discography, whether solo or with his bands, thenewno2 and Fistful of Mercy. And, he has collaborated with some of the most respected artists around the globe.
But when Fender approached Harrison about working on an instrument that would carry his name, he wanted to bring it back to something that was near and dear to his heart.
“I tried to think, if I did a signature model with Fender, what would it be?” Harrison recalled. “The first thing I thought of was that it had to be a ukulele.”
The son of Rock and Roll Hall of Famer George Harrison, Dhani Harrison grew up around countless instruments, including a variety of ukuleles. Some of the sounds that influences Harrison at a young age included 1940s English entertainer and ukulele player George Fromby and Hawaiian uke legend “King Bennie Nawahi.
“Ukuleles are supposed to bring joy,” said Harrison. “I guess that was one of the things that my dad loved [about it], sort of after the first and second World Wars, both times the ukulele would come out. When England was a mess, you’ve got all these people playing ukuleles, and it was just such a joyous thing.
“I [also] spent a lot of time in Hawaii going up, and I just got really into the ukulele.”
Harrison hopes his namesake model can bring those same uplifting feelings to others who may be interested in the ukulele, whether adults looking for a creative partner to bring on on the road with them or children just beginning their musical journey.
“We wanted to make it accessible,” Harrison said. “I’s the best thing for kids to learn when they’re learning rhythm and chord structure, because they’ve got little hands. I always found it hard playing big guitars when I was a kid, so I played a lot of ukuleles.
“It’s also very light, but it’s not flimsy, and that’s the thing I like about it. It’s a good solid, traveling [ukulele]. This would be great on the road.”
Harrison also infused some of his own unique style into his uke’s ovangkol body.
One version boasts a striking Sapphire Blue Transparent finish, while the other is a light Turquoise. Both also feature matching headcaps and unique inlays and engravings of symbols that personally inspire him.
And now that his signature ukulele is seeing the light of day, Harrison couldn’t be prouder.
“This is kind of a rite of passage,” he said. “The first time you get handed your own signature model says something about you - a reflection of your design and what you choose. I’m really, really happy.”