Careful readers of Buzz know Dave King as the author of comic Bob’n’Dave, but on his first record, he assumes his alter-ego as the Duke of Uke. The comic artist, a larger-than-life character rarely seen without his ukelele, plays to the strengths of his instrument, focusing on tropical jams and love songs (sometimes both). His vocals are appropriately airy and psychedelic. The slow “Be My Love” is a gentle intro, and “Guru” is an amusing and original love song. He finds the funkiest sound his instrument allows, while producer and accompanist Jeremy Bobbitt provides beachy percussion, bass, and the occasional more-exotic sound. Closer “She’s the Bomb” has the highest production value (to the point of being over-the-top), with record scratches and even a countdown to an explosion. “Aquanaut” sounds like the lost soundtrack to a silent comedy short, and “Graves” is as poignant as the title suggests.
Duke of Uke is available at That’s Rentertainment! and the Caffe Paradiso.