OMG, I literally am so dumbfounded with myself that in a span of 2 months, I bought two new ukuleles. It doesn’t really mean I’m not happy with my previous purchases, though. I.just.had.to. Lol. I was looking at some solid wood Enya models but I’m getting a lot of mixed reviews, so I decided to look elsewhere. Plus, it makes me really anxious about the ukulele’s state if I purchase it through an overseas store.
Anyway, unlike my last purchase, which is a pineapple soprano ukulele from Flight, my latest acquisition was from and made by a local luthier in Pampanga. I got the the KM Tenor Ukulele made by luthier Kently Morales (now, don’t mistake it for KM ukuleles made by Kevin Mulcock who’s based in England). I also did some research about the KM brand and initially, I thought it stands for the master luthier’s initials. But it’s actually a tribute to his late daughter, KirstenMiel.
The KM Tenor Ukulele
The ukulele’s top is made of Spruce, with Acacia back and sides, which makes it a solid wood ukulele. It literally smelled of wood when I took it out of the gig bag. Yeap! It came in a padded gig bag (a freebie that I wasn’t expecting). I bought it from Concor Music Store on Facebook, which, I think, is the official distributor of KM Guitars and Ukulele. Gilbert, the music store owner, took it upon himself to make impromptu videos for comparison of the models I looked at before I placed my order. Talk about topnotch customer support! He made sure it was shipped right after I paid for the uke and sent me updates about the shipping. The good thing about it is it came the next day even when he told me that it might take 3-7 days (that’s another good customer service practice–under promise, over deliver)!
You might ask what made me buy from them. Well, I really looked for some reviews on Facebook, including comments on posts. I’ve checked out several other makers, but this one stood out so I went ahead and contacted the seller.
Here’s a photo I took earlier. I don’t really want to put it on top of the table or on the floor so I just held it in my hand. My arms aren’t super long so I had to tilt it to fit the uke within the phone’s frame (sorry for the messy background):
I bought this ukulele for PhP 3500, plus PhP 450 for shipping (roughly $82 USD for shipping and the ukulele). I made the payment via online bank transfer. By the way, shipping cost will depend on the buyer’s location. This uke’s design is simple, nothing fancy but I like it more like that. Well, that’s just me. The KM ukuleles can also be customized with nice inlays on the fretboards and rosettes around the soundholes, as well as other specs that a buyer might want for the instrument.
The action of this tenor uke is low (which is very important, of course), and the fret wires are smooth on the sides, so I didn’t get any cuts on my hand. The neck and headstock were constructed in just two, instead of the usual 3 pieces, which ensures it’s sturdinesss. I didn’t really know what the fretboard’s material but I’m assuming it’s the usual rosewood. I might ask the seller to find out and will update this post. The bridge is a tie-bar type of bridge, like the one on my pineapple ukulele. I think this is the only type of bridge they make for their ukes. I prefer this type, too so that’s good.
I might get another one (or more. lol) from the same seller, probably one that’s customized according to my personal preference (Mahogany top, back, and sides, with Florentine cutaway).
What It Feels and Sounds Like
As of this writing, I’m still trying to get the hang of using a tenor ukulele (this is the largest one I have, to date). Oh, and did I say that it “sings” beautifully in a deep, full voice, too? The sound is much louder and warmer than my SQOE concert. The resonance is pretty good, too, due to its all solid wood construction. I’m thinking of changing the strings to low G to make the sound even richer (I can’t wait for my Oasis Warm Low G in the mail hahahah!). Anyway, I’ll be posting videos of my new child, but I still have to practice.
In case you’re interested, you may contact Concor Music Store through Facebook Messenger. Gilbert is pretty responsive, so you can expect him to reply within an hour.
Note: I paid for the ukulele so this isn’t a sponsored post. I highly recommend this brand as their products are high quality, considering the one I got isn’t top-of-the-line.