In being on the look out for nice Ukuleles I come across a few small, possibly part time luthiers from Japan who's Ukuleles I usually only see advertised for sale in music shops, and if they have any web presence it is in a language that is difficult for me to translate. Very often there is little information on them beyond a name and sometimes a brand name, however the instruments they make look very well made and worthy of note.
He trained under Yukinobu Chai and is I believe based in Tokyo. As ever I have fun with translation so again I think he only works part time as a luthier but has been doing so since before 2003.
Satoshi Wakisaka - Kige Workshop
Based in in Otsu, Shiga Prefecture he learned to make guitars in 2007 from Serge DeJonge in Canada, (who was Larrivée's first employee). I have seen 16 fret (to the neck) Supersoprano, Concert and a 410mm (16..1 in) model he describes as a "Mini Tenor" All of the examples I have seen feature a zero fret too. As ever I have trouble with translations and finding information using western scripts?
He learned to make instruments at the Robert-Venn School Of Luthiery in the USA in 1980. He started his business in 1982 making all sorts of fretted instruments including Guitars and Ukuleles. He is currently based in Hachiouji, Tokyo and his designs range from the fairly traditional to the quite imaginative, with very much a "what if?" attitude
This is a different person to Takahiro Shimojima.
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