Creating music and memories with a Canadian family run business
The beginning sounds a lot like a Journey song. Just a small town girl (that’s Lou), livin’ in a lonely world, took the midnight train going anywhere … erm, or more accurately drove her Honda civic without air conditioning across Canada in a heat wave to start a new job.
A singer in a smoky room, a smell of wine and cheap perfume, for a smile they can share the night (that’s Dave, the singer, minus the wine and cheap perfume). Guitar slinger by day, Dave spent his evenings immersed in the local music scene, singing lullabies & capturing hearts with his wit and wicked dance moves.
Our mutual love for music and the ocean resulted in a fast relationship and soon we found ourselves committed to each other for life.
When, 8 years later we found ourselves in a bit of a pickle – Lou being laid off as a result of the 2015 downturn in Calgary with a 3 month old and a 4 year old at home – Dave got to work fulfilling his destiny. During the latest ukulele boom he was amazed by how quickly they were selling despite how cheaply they were made. Most people were essentially ending up with a toy ukulele, one that did not produce high-quality sounds, resulting in frustration with their new hobby, and turning them off learning an instrument altogether.
Using his industry knowledge and music background, Dave was determined to design a better – and still affordable – alternative that would give aspiring musicians a better chance at success, Honolua Ukuleles was born.
And the moral of the story friends, is Don’t stop believin’.
Honolua Ukuleles is proud to be a family-run business, headed by us, a Canadian husband and wife team, Dave and Louise Simpson. We have a deep love for all things Hawaii, along with a deep appreciation for Hawaiian culture. Honolua Ukuleles gets its name from one of our favourite places on earth: Honolua Bay, a marine preserve in Maui. Our ukulele models are also named using the Hawaiian word for some of our favourite ocean animals.
We’ve instilled this same love for Hawaii in our sons, Ray and Vance, and the four of us also share a passion for beaches, baseball, and music. In fact, some of our best memories as a family involve music. Along with producing beautiful, high-quality ukuleles, it is our hope we’ll help you make lasting memories doing something you love: playing music.
Our careful design process is based on producing the best possible ukulele at an affordable price so anyone who wants to play music can do so on a real instrument.
All of our ukuleles include features you don’t typically find on similar-priced models, including:
In our experience, most people fall into one of two categories: those who play an instrument, and those who WANT to play an instrument.
At Honolua Ukuleles, it is our mission to turn as many aspiring musicians into ukulele players as we can. That’s why we design REAL instruments. Ones that are meant to be played, that inspire creation and singalongs. Because as good as a ukulele looks on your mantle, it looks even better in your hands. And thanks to our meticulous design process, your ukulele will sound as good as it looks.
We also know how important it is to put more wood back into the ground than we take out of it. With that in mind, we’ve partnered with One Tree Planted to plant one tree for every ukulele sold. And these aren’t just any trees we’re planting: whenever possible, we plant the same species tree as what that specific ukulele was made out of, and we plant it in the same area where the wood was sourced from.