Recently I got my hands on a Ukulele Chord Changer from Troubadour Music. For those of you that don’t know, a chord changer is a device that straps on to the neck of your ukulele and allows you to play chords at the press of a button. My initial interest in the Chord Changer was sparked when my dad asked whether I thought he could play the ukulele with his arthritis.
Who is it for?
The ukulele chord changer isn’t for everyone, so if you already know a few chords and have no trouble with your hands then it’s probably not for you. It’s aimed at people with reduced fine motor skills and young children. In my dad’s case, he has quite a short range of motion in his fingers and would almost certainly struggle fretting the more difficult chords than involve four fingers. I actually think it suits young kids pretty well too – my youngest son Max is 3 and I’d like to get him playing soon. I think the chord changer would be a great help to get him started.
Does it work?
I’ve been using it on my Peavey Jack Daniels concert uke and it seems to fit pretty well but struggles with some of the chords that are fretted higher up the neck – I think this is because it’s better suited to a soprano uke. Generally it plays the chords pretty well and is easy enough to use. There are 8 chord buttons on top of the device that allow you to play 8 chords but through being a little selective with your strings and a few button combinations you have access to a lot more.
Obviously there will be limitations, you’re not going to be hammering on, pulling off, sliding and generally embellishing your chords but that’s not really what the ukulele chord changer is about.
How much does it cost?
The uke chord changer and songbook set costs $32 direct from Troubadour Music. At the moment there aren’t any distributors in the UK but I believe that is set to change soon. Mine came pretty quickly from America (around 5 days or so) and bearing in mind that was over Christmas that’s pretty good going.
Despite the fact that I can play chords fine, I think it’s a pretty good addition for me to have. It’s going to be really useful for my youngest son to start to learn ukulele and it’s also going to be great to help my dad out.
22 thoughts on “Ukulele Chord Changer Review”
Interested to know if this will still work for a left hander like myself?
Hi Phil, apologies for missing your comment. If you own a left handed uke thn unfortunately I don’t think it would work. The only way I could see it working is with a ukulele strung for a right hander but played left handed. I hope that helps you.
I also am a beginner and have arthritis. Will this fit on a concert size uke?
Hey Vangie, all I can say is that it fits my concert pretty well, so in theory it should but it’s probably best dropping the guys at Troubador an email to see what they’re saying.
Hello. Will this device fit a tenor ukulele?
Probably not Margaret, I believe they have been created with a soprano and concert in mind.
Ok. Thanks, Dave.
I’ve not long bought my first Uke and struggling with the chords. I’ve only got small hands and stubby fingers, and just can’t reach and put enough pressure on the strings. I saw these Chord Changers on ebay and thought about treating myself. The postage from America adds quite a lot to the price, if they’re expected to be available here soon, i’d rather wait.
Have you heard any more details yet whether there are any Uk suppliers yet ?
I have a Baritone ukulele & wondered if the chord changer would work for me as I have arthritis & my fingers don’t work that well
Hey Lesley, I don’t think it would fit on a Baritone I’m afraid. It might be worth dropping Troubadour an email to see what they say though.
Thanks Dave. I will try contacting them
I have arthritis in my thumbs. It’s difficult to apply enough pressure on the neck of my soprano to have the chords ring out because of the pain in my thumbs. I like the chord changer, but changing chords is not the problem as much as the lack of strength in my thumbs. Do you know of any devices that could help with this problem?
Hi Erin, the chord changer isn’t actually so much about changing chords as it is helping you to play those chords. It still sounds like it might be what you need.
Hello my name is peter I am 91 years old i have
recently bough a ukulele and also a chord changer
from Ebay AU the changer only cost $42. 00 . I am
very happy with it bye from peter
I bought one of your ukulele “Chord Changers”, after showing it to a lady at a music store and the choir director at my church , they both said that all of the chords are not correct. What is the procedure to return this one and getting another chord changer with all of the right chords?
The Changer does work perfectly on soprano ukuleles….it must be
placed BETWEEN the nut and the 8th fret line.
i would like to purchase this. How much is it? I live in Hamilton, Ontario, how much for delivery or is there a music store where I can buy this.
Hey Christine, you can buy them from https://www.ukechordchanger.com/
How do I avoid the loud clicking when certain buttons are depressed?
Hi Dixie, I’m not sure, maybe a little oil to loosen the mechanism?
To whom it may concern,
Will this chord changer work on a banjolele?
My uke is a concert one. If the chord changer doesn’t work will you take it back and refund what I paid for it? Thank you. Beth