The Argus of 6 February 1936 related the news that a chair of guitar playing had been set up in the music conservatory of Madrid by the Spanish Government. The argument for this move was that it would preserve the playing of the guitar against the onslaught of movies and jazz music — apparently young people were voting with their feet, listening to the radio rather than the strumming of folk tunes.
This seems to put the idea of a conservatorium in an unfavourable light. It is then the case that, once a thing cannot support itself in the popular imagination, it has to be conserved by government decree. Nevertheless, did the headline of this article (with now forms the title of this post) mean that the jazzy ukulele would now be the popular choice of the young Spaniards, or did it mean that since the guitar has now made the grade for ‘conserving’, the ukulele might someday be ‘preserved’ in a similar way?