I got my new Enya Tenor Uke just a little while ago. It took a superhuman effort to drive all the way back from town before ripping the packaging apart.The traditional ukulele tuning runs like this, from top to bottom when holding the instrument…gCEA. The lower case g represents a “High G.” It gives a crisp sound. It SOUNDS like a uke. “Low G” tuning replaces the top string with one that’s thicker, and sounds an octave lower. It is essential for playing “alternating bass” which is commonly found in the kind of music I love which runs towards blues, folk, and country. You can’t get that with the High G tuning, technically called “reentrant tuning.”
I bought my first Enya uke in concert size. At the time it was the only size they offered. I got it since living on a small boat is tough on stuff and the Enya is made with a carbon fiber body that is impervious to water and moisture and can take tougher knocking around than a wooden uke. I love the thing and it had absorbed me for hours while bobbing around on the end of a rope off of Anna Maria Island and here deep in The Swamp off the Saint Johns River in Central Florida.The down-side of the instrument is that the frets are moulded into the fretboard so, naturally, they are made from the same carbon fiber material as the body. In the product description of the uke they specifically say, “NOT compatible with wound strings or strings containing metallic compounds.” Low G strings are generally wound with metal and while the uke material can take being banged around, the use of the wire-wound strings eats away at the frets, eventually ruining the instrument. (Before anyone comments, I KNOW they make unwound Low G strings, but many of THOSE contain metal particles in them and Enya says DON’T USE THEM.)When Enya blew up the size of the uke from Concert to Tenor they embedded metal frets so, as the product information in the ads says, “The frets are upgraded to metal material this time, with rounded edges. They never wear, and they never scratch your hand. Please feel free to put on the low G string.” The ukulele is shipped with reentrant tuning, so when I ordered it I also ordered a Low G string, too.