Category Archives: recordings

what Iʻm listening to . . . KAHULANUI !!

Hula Ku’i — a new CD by Kahulanui. New arrangements of vintage midcentury songs, complete with vintage instrumentation and crisp playing techniques, and produced to gold-medal blue-ribbon standards on Charles Michael Brotman’s Palm Records label.  “Hawaiian swing at its finest,” writes Skylark Rosetti in … Continue reading

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Top Five Albums of Historical Significance — My Picks

We all love lists. Or at least magazine editors and bloggers like to that lists of “The Best . . . ” would sell lots of copies, or result in lots of hits. There are many ways to compile such … Continue reading

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Slack Key Guitar / Kī Hō‘alu: A Listening Guide

Kī hō‘alu literally means “loosen the key.” It characterizes the Hawaiian playing style, in which the standard guitar tuning is altered by slackening the strings.  The playing style, executed by a single player, combines plucking a bass line on the … Continue reading

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on my mind . . . how is “historical significance” defined in Hawaiian music?

Following on the previous post, here is one more set of thoughts before I post my selection of “Top Ten Albums of Hawaiian Music–The View from 2012.” What is historical significance? Is historical significance defined by the achievement of excellence … Continue reading

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on my mind . . . Top Ten Albums of Hawaiian Music — the view from 2012, Pt. 1

Aloha Dear Readers! This kind of list-making is frequently an annual undertaking and usually occurs at yearʻs end. Iʻm coming back around to a birdʻs eye view from a slightly different place. We have Honolulu magazineʻs two high-profile projects: “The … Continue reading

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What Iʻm Listening To: Natalie Ai Kamauu

It is so rare when the luxury presents itself to sit with a CD and listen to it from start to finish. Equally rare–or perhaps more so–is the experience of having a CD draw in the listener by its very … Continue reading

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SONGS: Gabby Pahinuiʻs recordings of “Hiʻilawe”

In the last post I pointed to early printings of the mele “Hiʻilawe”–in a 1902 songbook (where the mele appears with two different tunes) and in the newspaper Ke Aloha Aina in 1906. The song is now forever associated with … Continue reading

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Queen Liliʻuokalaniʻs Songs — Looking for Recordings?

In 2010 there are several posts about archival sources for Queen Lili‘uokalaniʻs songs. It was on my mind to complement those posts with a post or two (or maybe more) about recordings. Here, at long last, is a roundup of … Continue reading

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E Ō Maui: Irmgard Farden Aluli & Puamana

The musical legacy Mauiʻs Farden family stretches epically over at least four generations of musicians, entertainers, recording artists, songwriters, kumu hula, educators, and ambassadors of aloha. In her generation, Irmgard Farden Aluli had garnered attention as an entertainer and songwriter, … Continue reading

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Hawaiian Music Submissions to the Grammy Awards for 2011

In a sweeping restructuring of categories announced back in April 2011, The Recording Academy will no longer recognize Hawaiian music with its own category. Rather, Hawaiian music is incorporated into a new and broader category named “Best Regional Roots Music” … Continue reading

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