By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – A little instrument is seeing a big surge in popularity.

At Vintage Instruments at Broad and Lombard, assistant manager Sarah Larsen strums away on a ukulele.

She says there’s been a sales crescendo lately, “I think a lot of people are getting kind of tired of overly autotuned and overproduced music.  And they really like the organic sound of the ukulele.”

She says you can get a ukulele for as little as $75, and musically they do most things a guitar can do with a lot more portability.

“A lot of people around town are starting to take it on as a second instrument, which is great, because it means the music scene here is becoming more diverse.”

And, she says, they have a unique sound because unlike guitars, the strings are positioned high to low.

“They’re tuned with a high string here, so you’ve got a G on top. And the C, E, and then an A on the very very top here. So, it’s an interesting style.”

Larsen says there’s a Ukulele group at Penn, and even a Philadelphia Ukulele Orchestra.

Whatever the reason, the National Association of Music Merchants says ukulele sales have nearly doubled over the last two years.

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