North American 21st c. small importers/distributors click for more

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Beaver Creek soprano Ukulele
Beaver Creek Soprano
(the good one)
There are a number of North American importers and retailers who have a range of Ukuleles they import, usually from China, and then brand with their own name. They are usually better than the budget end, (though may include a budget end model) and some can be quite good quality


Nalu apparently means wave in Hawaiian, but in this case its a company based in Los Angeles, California founded in 2011 who market 3 ranges of, (very expensive for a Chinese import that looks like a Koyama), Ukulele with a laser etched wave motif on the sound hole. The ranges are:
Ahua - Simple solid mahogany with few embellishments, PPS nut and saddle. All acoustic with a matte finish, in Soprano, Concert, Superconcert or Tenor Scale
Hokua - Mahogany with binding and lots of inlay, Black Tusq nut and saddle. Can be acoustic or electro-acoustic (with a cutaway), gloss or matte finish and comes in Soprano, Concert, Superconcert or Tenor Scale
Kaiko’o - Sitka Spruce top with Zebrawood back and sides, binding, and lots of inlay. Can be acoustic or electro-acoustic, (with a cutaway), a black gloss finish and comes in Concert, Superconcert or Tenor Scale
One extra for the money though is they promise to send the owner a new set of strings every year

Oriolo Guitar Co.

Founded in 2010 by professional musician Don Oriolo (who also happens to own the rights for Felix the cat). There is a range of Guitars and Mandolins plus a number of colourful Soprano and Concert Ukuleles most of which heavily feature Felix the Cat and it looks to me that Nanjing Aileen are the OEM and most of the non Felix designs are available elsewhere In 2014 from the website it looks like they have stopped doing Ukuleles but the facebook site shows some still being sold

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