Of course, I met both Steve and Lucas through my dad, but unlike most folks who filter through the shop who are solely focused on obtaining a Wayne Henderson instrument, they both stopped long enough to talk to me too. Lucas and his grandparents have become frequent visitors to Rugby and I now consider them good friends to my dad, so it was super flattering that they always include me too. Lucas is the most positive, extraverted person I know, and I definitely had trouble believing he was 16 when I met him. Not just because he laid on a pretty heavy slather of flirting, but because he was completely devoid of that cape of insecurity and brooding most teenage boys shroud themselves with. It was Lucas who introduced me to Zac Brown, got my dad to play on stage with him, and of course the most important thing, somehow convinced John Mayer to write me a little note (with a heart!!) on his Born and Raised CD cover saying that I had built a great guitar. (I might have wet myself a tiny bit when I read that, but that is beside the point.) Also, because I assume we are all friends here, I will also unnecessarily share that I had already bought that CD twice because I pre-ordered it on Amazon but it didn't come fast enough so I bought another copy at Target the morning it came out...Now I have three, so if you missed buying this album, let me know because I might have an extra...Aaaanyway....
|I apologize for the quality of these pictures-forgot my camera at home and had to use my telephone...|
That little tidbit of advice came in handy upon the finish of ukulele number 11, as when I strung it up, expecting just as great a sound as the koa uke, there was something just a little bit off. There was a little buzz on one fret on the bottom string, and it was infuriating me that I couldn't get it out. That is the most frustrating thing about hammering frets into the fingerboard as opposed to using the fret press, which I often do because I can't find the straight metal piece that needs to be affixed into the press since ukulele fingerboards are straight (as opposed to the curved piece used for curved guitar fingerboards). Also, I haven't figured out how to change the thing even if I had been able to locate it. Hammering the metal makes for the frets to not always be uniformly pressed into the fingerboard, and the uneven fret is that is usually responsible for the string buzzing after it is strung up. Eventually we got it straightened out, but not after a little more frustration and a lot more filing of the frets.
|Mockingbird on heelcap of Steve's guitar.|
|4 panel back.|
Steve, who lives in Los Angeles, came to Rugby to pick up his two new instruments and while he was visiting, I took him to explore a little bit of the back country sticks of Rugby. Even though we were caught in a bit of a thunderstorm, we tripped along the trails of Grayson Highlands and I enjoyed each drenched step. Hopefully he and his three LA friends who joined us had as good a time as I did. It was truly a treat to get to visit and spend time with him and his friends Eric, Trish, and Ian.
Side note, Steve is one of the biggest supporters of my blog, so if you enjoy reading this, be sure thank him for encouraging me and pestering me to keep it up. I also thank him for becoming such a great friend and supporting me in this somewhat ridiculous endeavor of making instruments instead of working as an environmental advocate at a nonprofit somewhere. It is always such an exciting day when I meet that rare visitor who actually cares what the weird girl in the corner of my dad's shop is sawing on over there. Steve, hope my ukulele did you proud!
|All brazilian uke pictures courtesy of Steve.|