Playlist for MUS 478B Fall 2010: HULA

From Ancient to Modern. From kuahu to ʻauana. Here we go!

A. HULA PAHU

There are many excellent recordings to choose from. The CD Hawaiian Drum Dance Chants (Smithsonian Folkways SF-40015) makes available important historical recordings by chanters Kuluwaimaka, Pua Ha‘aheo, Katherine Kanahele, and Mary Kawena Pukui, recorded in the 1930s. The CD Ancient Hula Hawaiian Style (HanaOla HOCD 2010) adds mid-century recordings by Lokalia Montgomery and George Naope; hula pahu repertoire is also recorded by their contemporaries Tom Hiona on Hawaiian Chant, Hula and Music (Folkways FW-8750) and Henry Pa on Mele Inoa Vol. 2 (Noelani NRS-103)–two LPs not re-issued on CD or online. Maiki Aiu Lake, the teacher of teachers in the 1970s and 1980s, recorded the core “trilogy” of hula pahu repertoire on her CD Maiki (Hula HS-588). More contemporpary chanters who have recorded hula pahu repertoire in include Kaha‘i Topolinski on the LP Nou e Kawena (Pumehana PS-4926) and on the CD Nā Kumu Hula / Songs from the Source Vol. 1 (State Council on Hawaiian Heritage SCHH-1); Keith Kalanikau Awai on Hana Hou! (Do It Again) (Pan 2033), Noenoe Zuttermeister Lewis on Hawaiian Drum Dance Chants (Smithsonian Folkways SF-40015), the Brothers Kanilau (Randy and Keli‘i Chang) on Mele Oli (Sounds True M-007), Michael Pili Pang on Hawaii–Traditional Hula (Arc EUCD-1794), and Pekelo Day on Mai Nā Kūpuna Mai (Ululoa UL-106).

1. “Kaulilua i ke anu Wai‘ale‘ale.”  The Hawaiian Festival Contingent, Festival Music from Hawai‘i (Hibiscus HLS-71). The performance chosen for my class playlist is from a 1976 performance at the 2nd South Pacific Festival of Arts held in Rotorua, New Zealand. The chanter here is Hoakalei Kamau‘u, an important chanter, teacher, and advocate of traditional hula and whose recordings are too few and far between. Music from many of the delegations performing at the Festival were released by Hibiscus Records, a New Zealand label specializing in Pacific music.

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2. ” ‘Au‘a ‘ia e Kama e kona moku.” This mele is symbolically charged for contemporary Hawaiians. It reports a prophecy of a poet and historian named Keaulumoku. He counsels performers and audiences to hold fast to lands and heritage, for great changes were about to engulf the Hawaiian people. While one source identifies the recipient of the prophecy as ‘Aikanaka, a chief who ruled several centuries before the arrival of Europeans, another source identifies the recipient as Nāmakahelu, a chief in the time of Kamehameha I. The version selected for this playlist is one of the most recently issued recordings of this mele by Maui-based kumu hula Pekelo Day. Mai Nā Kūpuna Mai (Ululoa UL-106).

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B. Hula ‘Āla‘apapa

Mele hula with ipu accompaniment that predate the Kalākaua era do not possess the symmetrical patterning of stanzas that emerged in the later 19th century in the hula ku‘i and its chanted counterpart that came to be called hula ‘ōlapa. There may be refrains repeated in different sections of the mele, but there is no expectation of consistent line stanza lengths. The mele were as long or as short as needed.

3. “Hole Waimea,” performed by Lokalia Montgomery on Waikiki Records (45-532) and reissued on Ancient Hula Hawaiian Style (HanaOla HOCD-2010). What exquisite ipu playing by a master teacher whose students included Maiki Aiu Lake. The mele, associated with Kamehameha I, is found in manuscript and newspaper sources as dedicated to Kamehameha II.

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4. “Holo Mai Pele,” on Uwōlani (Liko LR-2003). Hilo‘s Hālau o Kekuhi is acknowledged as the preeminent guardians of hula repertoire dedicated to the volcano goddess Pele. Moreover, much of the repertoire has a clear lineage dating back generations preceding the Kalākaua era in the late nineteenth century. Many newer  compositions by the most recent four generations of the Kanaka‘ole family are informed by the pre-19th century structures and sensibilities of the inherited repertoire.

C. HULA ‘ŌLAPA

5. “Aia lā ‘o Pele i Hawai‘i,” performed by Ka‘upena Wong, with kāhea by Pele Pukui Suganuma. Mele Inoa (Poki SP-9003) is an LP that has not yet been remastered onto CD. Although this mele is dedicated to Pele, its strophic structure and repeated tune point to late 19th- or early 20th-century composition, and prominent scholar Kīhei de Silva has suggested linking the vivid descriptions in this mele to eruptions in 1880 and 1881.

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6. “Nani wale ku‘u ‘ike,” performed by Maiki Aiu Lake on Maiki (Hula HS-588). A late 19th- or early 20th-century mele, taught by Maiki Aiu Lake as taught to her by Lokalia Montgomery, using the feather-decorated ‘ulī‘ulī gourd rattle.

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7. “He Lei No Kapi‘olani” [Aia i Haili kō lei nani] by Sonny Ching, on Ho‘oūlu i ka Na‘auao (Four Strings FSCD 7489). Sonny Ching is kumu hula of Nā Mamo o Pu‘uanahulu, which has won numerous awards in preeminent hula competition events.

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8. “No ka Moku Kiakahi ke aloha” performed by Keali‘i Reichel on Melelana (Punahele PP-007). A recent composition by Keali‘i Reichel from within the past two decades, yet this mele is in the structure of its late 19th-century counterparts. This mele was reissued on the anthology Kamahiwa (Punahele PP-010).

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“CROSSOVER” — what I call those mele that were handed down as both chanted hula ‘ōlapa and sung hula ‘ku‘i

9. “Lili‘u E” by Aloha Pumehana Serenaders on Hula Gems (Poki SP-9013). Kumu Hula Darrell Lupenui is the lead voice heard on this CD. This track is a wonderful teaching tool, for introducing the concept of “crossover”–what I call mele that were taught in both chanted hula ‘ōlapa and sung hula ku‘i modes. It is exactly the same mele poetic text, yet it takes on two completely different characters both musically and choreographically.

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D. Hula Ku‘i

10. “Puamana” by Irmgard Aluli and Puamana. From Irmgard With Love (Mountain Apple MACD-2049). A classic hula ku‘i song, performed by the composer herself and her group consisting of two daughters and a niece. This song is a perennial favorite among hula students, and among novice musicians at kani ka pila.

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11. “I Ali‘i No ‘Oe,” performed by Genoa Keawe. Luau Hulas (Hula HS-514). Genoa Keaweʻs album Luau Hulas and its predecessor Party Hulas (Hula HS-507 were both produced with use by hula dancers in mind. The arrangements are straightforward; the first and last stanzas are repeated while stanzas in between are sung only once, and there are no instrumental breaks inserted. These two recordings also represent Genoa Keawe‘s signature ha‘i most excellently.

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12. “Ko‘ula” by Raiatea Helm with Robert Cazimero. Hawaiian Blossom (Raiatea Helm RHCD-8001). Raiatea Helm is one of a handful of singers hailed as successor to Genoa Keawe‘s signature ha‘i style of singing. The soaring vocal lines invite wide sweeping gestures in choreography.

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And finally, wrapping up the listening excerpts for hula ku‘i are two compositions from recent recordings.

13. “Ku‘u Pua Lovely,” performed by Nā Kama. Kamakolu (Makani MR-003).

14. “Hanohano Helumoa,” performed by Ho‘okena. Nani Mau Loa (Ho‘omau HOCD-10xx).

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