Custom Grimes Concert Ukulele


Preowned. A work of art! Custom Steve Grimes Concert Ukulele built on the island of Maui, HI. If you were looking for the best of the best in high-end ukes, look no further! The time invested on each piece is a testimony to over 50 years of guitar and ukulele luthiery and can be seen in the quality of instruments he handcrafts and the world-class tones they produce. Absolutely incredible in all aspects of construction and sound.

Steve is at the forefront of discussion in terms of contemporary luthiery theory and technique while remaining firmly rooted in his understanding of classical construction. The application of these two knowledge bases equates to an instrument with both sound structural integrity and exceptionally refined tonal qualities. His wealth of knowledge in working with various tone woods and materials coupled with his understanding of finish work has led to an extensive contribution to the guitar and ukulele communities on the local, national, and global platforms.

Steve Grimes Bio Information

The Focus of Steve Grimes’ instruments building career has been the arch top guitar for over thirty five years. He produces six arch top models, two double-soundhole flat top guitars (steel string and nylon string), two singles soundhole model flat tops, two models of arch top mandolins, and several sizes and styles of ukuleles. Grimes began building instruments in Seattle in 1972, and moved the business to Hawaii in 1982. He met Keola Beamer, a master “slack key” guitarist, and collaborated with him on the double hole flat top guitar design. The result was the creation of the “Beamer” and “Hapa” model guitars.

  • In 1991 Grimes teamed with Ned Steinberger to produce a “stress free” flat top guitar design, where the string tension is applied to a tailpiece, rather than the soundboard, thereby increasing sustain and volume. Gibson Guitars acquired the rights for this guitar in 1993.
  • In 1998, Grimes was selected to be among 22 arch top luthiers from around the world to build a guitar for Scott Chinery’s “Blue Guitar” collection, which spent one year on exhibit in the Smithsonian Gallery of American History.
  • In 2002 Grimes collaborated with legendary jazz guitarist Larry Coryell on a flat top, oval hole guitar, and the result was the “LC” model. He is currently working on a guitar design with George Bensen and Ibanez.

The hallmark of Grimes guitars is the close attention to detail, and the careful voicing of the soundboard, from arch tops to ukuleles, before the back plate is glued on. Grimes customizes each instrument to fit specific requests from the player, including tone, dimensions, aesthetics (woods, inlay, finish color, embellishments, etc). In addition to ukuleles finely handcrafted for world-class musicians such as Jake Shimabukuro, Keola Beamer, and Barry Flanagan, Steve has also made over 330 arch top guitars and 250 flat tops for such artists as George Benson (4 guitars), Larry Coryell (3 guitars), Leo Kottke, Earl Klugh, Keola Beamer (4), Walter Becker (8), Steve Miller (8), Pat Simmons, Willie Nelson and others.

This beautiful Custom Grimes Concert Ukulele is handcrafted from master grade Brazilian Rosewood back and sides with a gorgeous set of Sinker Redwood as the soundboard. Sinker redwood are redwood trees that were harvested and sent downriver to processing mills but sank at some point along the way. They are extremely difficult to recover and are often buried under silt that has accumulated over the years. Nonetheless, these logs are highly sought after by luthiers for their structural and tonal characteristics, having been subjected to low oxygen levels at extreme cold temperatures at the bottom of the river floor. Aesthetically, the darker colored streaking is characteristic of a sinker redwood.  It is very stiff and lightweight, making it ideal for soundboards and uniquely distinct in its structural properties when compared to a typical redwood. The back and sides, being old growth Brazilian Rosewood, is among the most desirable woods in the guitar and ukulele community and most commonly tucked away by wood enthusiasts for special builds. This set of Brazilian Rosewood has been in Steve’s personal wood collection for an extensive period and has now been masterfully handcrafted into this gorgeous concert ukulele. Gabon ebony wood fretboard and bridge with a Hawaiian curly Koa wood rosette, matching Hawaiian curly Koa wood bound headstock, top and back binding, and matching end graft. A multi-ply wood top and back black-white-purple-white -black purfling for aesthetic appeal and a black-white-black side purfling line are a few attributes that display a subtle elegance offered by this beautiful ukulele as it keeps with the earthy theme of the instrument. The bridge also incorporates a small curly Hawaiian Koa wood inlay at the base of the bridge. Meticulously inlaid  side position markers on 5, 7, 10, 12, and 15 for quick top-down reference and a Honduras mahogany neck for added stability. Open-geared Gotoh UK-700 machine tuners for precise tuning with little weight added to the headstock. High gloss nitrocellulose lacquer finish for mirror-like finish.

Brazilian Rosewood is sought after by musicians and luthiers alike for its powerful and rich low end. In addition to the low end this instrument also boasts perfect intonation, remarkable sustain, and great clarity on each note. The Redwood adds a wonderful warmth to the sound as well. A great pairing of woods and a remarkable sound. This beautiful uke plays absolutely wonderfully and offers great depth and range all the way up the neck.  A recording level instrument from one of Hawaii’s most highly regarded luthiers, Steve Grimes. ID#230064

Price: SOLD

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