As if the ukulele wasn’t portable enough . . . Monty Ross, an electrical engineer based in Washington, has developed a AA-battery-powered, solid-body, electro-acoustic ukulele, known as the Ukelation. The Ukelation features an under-saddle pickup along with a built-in speaker and effects including echo, chorus, tremolo, flanger, and phaser. Though the body size is similar to that of a soprano, the uke features a tenor scale length and is strung in low-G tuning. Also of note, the company is committed to sourcing “orphan wood” from the “scrap heap,” and their wood choices include koa, maple, walnut, and cherry.
In order to cover the costs of custom parts and tooling, Ukelation is currently running a Kickstarter campaign. The company hopes to ramp up production in the spring of 2015 and expects the first batch of instruments to be ready for customers by summertime.