Ukuleles are inherently charming, and Fender amplifies (literally) that charm with the Dhani Harrison Signature model. A tilted four-inline headstock with vintage-style tuners? On a glued-in mahogany neck? It’s a Fender and then some.
Dhani’s dad, George, loved the humble uke and had a sizable collection, so the Dhani Harrison model didn’t exactly come out of nowhere. Its tenor body has a solid ovangkol top and veneers on sides and back, available in two finish colors. The 17″ scale on the walnut fretboard is on the long side, offering more string tension, especially handy if you want to drop that pesky high-D string an octave with a heavier string for a more guitar-like approach.
Unplugged, picked or strummed, the body projects with distinct string separation. However, players are going to want the Dhani uke for its amplified properties, courtesy of the Fender preamp. Fingerpicked standards (“Here Comes The Sun,” anyone?) take on new character, and traditional uke techniques, with or without the classic felt plectrum, are bright and, well, sunny. Crank it up – the stiff ovangkol and shallow body help with feedback resistance.
Uke enthusiasts will want to add the Dhani to their collection of pineapple-shaped and coffee-can ukes. Harrison fans will love the unique graphics, including Dhani’s signature. Fender collectors, Harrison fans, amplified ukuleleists – this one’s for you.
This article originally appeared in VG’s October 2021 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.