The Duke

WESTMINSTER, CA — Bill Tapia delighted audiences with his music for nearly a century. He passed away just 30 days shy of his 104th birthday.

In the last decade of his career, Bill traveled and performed throughout the world with his best friend, Pat “Palika” Enos. Together, they designed the Bill Tapia™ signature custom ukulele brand.

Bill entrusted Pat with his legacy – to maintain the highest standards for ukuleles that bear his legendary name.

Bill Tapia was celebrated worldwide as the “Duke of Uke.” He performed with Bing Crosby, Billie Holiday, Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong, and just about everyone who was anyone in the early Hawaiian music scene.

He taught ukulele to Shirley Temple, Clark Gable and many others from Hollywood’s Golden Era. In Bill’s hands, the ukulele became a magical instrument.

Now, you can create magic of your own. Built to Bill’s exacting standards, Bill Tapia ukuleles will take you wherever you want to go, musically.  Bill never compromised with his music and neither do his signature ukuleles.

Each instrument is hand-crafted, using rigorous construction methods to ensure great sound, high quality, and sublime playability.

Bill Tapia was known for his flamboyance as well as for his masterful ukulele playing. It showed in the dapper way he dressed, in the customized cars he drove, and especially in his favorite musical instruments. Bill designed his signature ukulele to be as flashy as he was – but he also demanded that it be elegant.

No detail was overlooked in bringing this beautiful ukulele into existence. It strikes the eye with a flourish guaranteed to quicken the pulse of every true ukulele lover. From the gold tuners to the tortoise shell bindings, polished bridge, and fine mahogany grain that lies beneath the “Bill Tapia Red” lacquer, each instrument is uniquely beautiful.

But the beauty doesn’t stop there. You’ll also find beauty in the way it feels in your hands, in the way it responds to your fingers on the Aquila strings and rosewood fretboard – and especially in the clear resonance of its voice.

Bill worked on the design of his signature ukulele right up until his death. He demanded quality, beauty, and smile-provoking playability. That’s exactly what he got.

Each Bill Tapia ukulele will include a fine quality case with screen print logo as shown below at no additional cost.

Bulk wholesale pricing will be available to qualified dealers. Please contact Pat Enos at (800) 416-8838 for more information.  MSRP: $345.00 (For more information, please visit

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