Preowned. Circa 2019. Beautiful custom Josh Rieck tenor ukulele handcrafted in Sioux Falls, South Dakota with the utmost attention to detail and a focus on tone. This is one of those “hidden gem” ukuleles. Rieck ukuleles rarely show up on the open market and are truly wonderful instruments that offer a beautiful aesthetic and a fantastic playing ukulele.
J. Rieck Biography
Seeing luthierie as a beautiful crossroad of music and visual art, Josh Rieck began studying the craft in 2002 at Minnesota State College – Southeast Technical in Red Wing, MN. After graduating with honors from the Guitar Repair and Construction course he moved back to his hometown, Aberdeen, SD and started String Theory Musical Instrument Repair and Custom Construction, performing guitar repair for local music shops while also beginning to build various acoustic and electric instruments.
Because of the local demand, Josh also began to work with violin family instruments while studying double bass performance degree at Northern State University. Double bass studies continued in 2007 at the University of South Dakota under Dr. Rick Rognstad, at which point the business also moved to Sioux Falls.
After completing his masters in 2009, Josh went full time in a newly expanded location in Sioux Falls. During the 2012-2013 academic year, Josh studied the history of musical instruments at the National Music Museum.
As of 2016 the name of the business has changed to J. Rieck Lutherie – this reflects the shift in focus to primarily new instrument construction.
This beautiful custom Rieck tenor ukulele was handcrafted of Carpathian spruce top with a gorgeous set of flamed black walnut wood on the back and sides. The walnut was locally sourced from a tree in Sioux Falls and is exceptional in figure and color. The ukulele also boasts a rich dark Gabon Ebony wood fingerboard and bridge with a curly Hawaiian Koa wood bound fingerboard, top and back binding, back headstock plate, back center seem line, and matching end graft. Elegant black walnut and mother-of-pearl rosette with “crown” accent inlay and a single diamond shaped mother-of-pearl inlay on the twelfth position for quick reference. Black walnut top head stock veneer with Rieck logo inlaid in mother-of-pearl, and a bound head stock in Hawaiian Koa wood in keeping with the earthy feel of this instrument – a subtle but elegant touch. Head stock back plate of Hawaiian Koa wood. Black Walnut wood neck. Side sound port for monitor-like experience. Professional Waverly tuners for smooth and precise tuning. Waterborn Acrylic finish on the body with a satin style neck. 17″ scale. 1.5″ nut width. There is a small ding on the back binding that is purely cosmetic in nature. See photos for more details.
A beautifully handcrafted custom ukulele with great ease of play, comfort, and tone. Rieck utilizes a bracing pattern on the soundboard that is a hybrid of an scaled X brace, giving the instrument wonderful rigidity, with the benefits of a traditional fan brace system below the bridge. The back utilizes a ladder bracing system, which offers greater projection. The result is a remarkable tone with excellent projection, a more present mid-range, with fantastic clarity. The walnut gives the instrument a slightly darker sound but balanced beautifully with the brightness offered by the Carpathian spruce. A highly recommended build and a wonderful instrument handcrafted by a skilled luthier who finds excellent balance between aesthetics, function, and tone. ID#:210033