updated: 07/27/08

My name is Julie Strietelmeier and I’m obsessed with ukuleles. Let me back up a bit… I actually taught myself to play fingerstyle guitar years ago when I was a teenager. I always liked the idea of playing whole songs (melody and chords) all by myself because I didn’t have the opportunity to play with other people and I wasn’t a singer. I had several guitars through the years, but always had a thing for small travel guitars. I tried several of them but when it came right down to it, I just wasn’t very good at playing the guitar period. So after years of plunking around from time to time, my guitar took up permanent residence in its case. Very sad, I know…

Then in October of 2007, I somehow happened upon two videos of people playing songs on the ukulele. The first video that I saw was a YouTube video of Jake Shimabukuro playing a My Guitar Gently Weeps (Beatles) on a ukulele and the second video was Michael Wagner playing a tune called Spooky. I was completely blown away because in all my years of researching, buying and trying various travel guitars, I’d never even considered a ukulele. Heck, I never even had a clue that people played fingerstyle on these little instruments. A few days after seeing those videos, I ordered my first ukulele (a concert sized Koa Pono PKC-1E) and a few hours after unboxing it, I posted my first attempt at playing a tune.

A few weeks later and I was still obsessed with this instrument, so I decided to start up a new website devoted to it. I’m no stranger to running a website. I run another popular site called The Gadgeteer, where I review consumer electronics, gadgets and gizmos. That site is over 10 years old now!

My plans for this site are to write reviews of instruments, accessories, CDs, DVDs and books. I know I have a lot to learn about this wonderful little instrument, but I hope that my opinions will be helpful. Wish me luck growing ukulelereview.com. 🙂

julie strietelmeier

My ukulele collection (which is in constant flux) currently consists of the following instruments:

GString C1 Sun Concert
Boat Paddle Ukulele – Custom Concert
Mike DaSilva – Custom Concert
Risa Uke Solid – Concert sized travel ukulele