This is a 1920s invention ... lets take a soprano ukulele and make it LOUD!!!!
Banjos are well known for being LOUD!!!! Ask any of the long suffering members of a banjo players' household. The ukulele at the time was rather quiet and got lost in the ruckus ragtime bands of the time period. Putting two and two together ... the Banjolele!
At first most banjoleles, or banjo ukes, were soprano sized plucky little things. Today they are available in all ukulele sizes and a variety of qualities. Of interest are the new Gold Tone brand plastic body banjoleles.... they are concert sized, come in a variety of clear colors, have solid maple necks and sound really great. And only $159! Check them out at Bounty Music in Maui.