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Hawaii

Music

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HAWAIIAN MUSIC:
The history of Hawaiian music began in the mid 1800’s, when visitors from all over the planet came to visit. They brought instruments such as the violin, guitar, ukulele, piano, accordion, and flute to Hawaiian culture. “Hawaiian music was rooted in old religious chants and hymns, which the native Hawaiians then mixed with the musical rhythms, sounds, and instruments that they heard from international visitors, immigrants, and missionaries.” (surfing for life website). Hawaiian secular music was influenced by Mexican, Italian, German, and Burmese people.
In the 1800’s, Mexican people (paniolo) came to Hawaii and brought their guitars. They taught the Hawaiians to play in the “Spanish” style. The Hawaiians had innate musical talent and quickly became interested in the guitar. At first, they would follow the Mexican guitar style and tuning but eventually, they adapted the tuning of the guitar to suit their own traditional Hawaiian songs and chants. They would loosen the guitar strings or “slacking” them. This allowed them to play bass on the loosened bass strings while playing the song’s melody on the treble strings. They played with a steady rhythm and used a “finger picking” style. The slack key guitar method became so popular that families began developing their own unique styles and were very protective of their string tuning secrets. This slack key, or ki ho’alu, style has been labeled Hawaii’s “back porch,” folk, and soul music. It has a very relaxing sound and captures the “aloha” spirit.
Hawaiian music is also distinguished by its steel guitar style. This style was developed largely by accident. “In adapting the guitar to suit their own musical styles, Hawaiians often used a steel object and later a crafted steel bar to slide along the strings, producing a unique tone which was then integrated into developing the Hawaiian sound.” (surfing for life website). The steel guitar was featured in several Hawaiian bands in the early 1900s.
Hawaiian music has also been influenced by gospel music, American pop such as Stephen Foster, country and western, ragtime, swing, European light opera, and jazz. The Hawaiian culture blends all of these international styles into their own sophisticated rhythms and guitar styling. A few important Hawaiian artists include, Gabby Pahinui, The Tau Moe Family, The Sons of Hawaii, and Queen Liliuokalani who wrote the famous song, “Aloha Oe” in 1883. King Kalakau was known as the “Merry Monarch” for his love of music and hula dancing. He was also a skilled musician and prolific composer.
Information for this section came from: http://www.surfingforlife.com/music.html

Song Title
(click on title for midi)
HawaiianTranslation
English Translation

`Ahulili

He aloha n `o `Ahulili
He lili paha k iala
I ke kau mau `ole `ia
E ka `ohu kau kuahiwi
 
Eia n e ka `olu
Ke `ala kpaoa
A lawa kou makemake
E manene ae kou kino
 
`Ako aku au i ka pua
Kui n wau a lei
A i lei poina `ole
No n kau a kau
 
Pa`a iho oe a pa`a
Ka `i`ini me ka `ano`i
He`ano`i n ka pua
Ka beauty a`o Mauna Hape
 
Ha`ina mai ka puana
He aloha n `Ahulili
He lili paha k iala
I ke kau mau `ole `ia
A love for `Ahulili
He might be jealous
For not always being on
The mist of the mountain
 
Here is the cool
Heady fragrance
And your desires satisfied
As your body shudders
 
I have plucked the flower
Strung into a lei
A lei never forgotten
From one season to the next
 
Hold on tightly to
Your desire and your love
The craving for your blossom
The beauty of Happy Mountain
 
This is the end
A love for `Ahululi
He might be jealous
For not always being on

A love for `Ahulili

E huli, e huli mkou
E huli, e huli mkou
Kou maka, kou lima,
Me kou kino e
Ke aloha
 
I mua, i mua mkou
I hope, i hope mkou
Kou maka, kou lima,
Me kou kino e
Ke aloha
 
I lalo, i lalo mkou
I lalo, i lalo mkou
Kou maka, kou lima,
Me kou kino, e
Ke aloha
 
I luna, i luna mkou
I luna, i luna mkou
Kou maka kou lima
M e kou kino e
Ke aloha
 
E huli, e huli ho`i mai
E huli, e huli ho`i mai
Kou maka, kou lima,
Me kou kino, e
Ke aloha
Turn, let's all turn to the right
Turn, let's all turn to the left
Your eyes, your hands,
Your body
Express love
 
Forward, let's all go forward
Back, let's all go back
Your eyes, your hands,
Your body
Express love
 
Down, let's all go down
Down, let's all go down
Your eyes, your hands,
Your body
Express love
 
Up, let's all go up
Up, let's all go up
Your eyes, your hands,
Your body
Express love
 
Return, let's all return
Return, let's all return
Your eyes, your hands,
Your body
Express love

Pua Mana

Pua Mana
Ku`u home i Lahaina
Me n pua `ala onaona
Ku`u home i aloha `ia
 
Ku`u home
I ka ulu o ka niu
O ka niu k kilakila
Napenape mlie
 
Home nani
Home i ka `ae kai
Ke knane a ka mahina
I ke kai hwanawana
 
Ha`ina
`Ia mai ka puana
Ku`u home i Lahaina
Ua piha me ka hau`oli
Pua mana
My home in Lahaina
With fragrant flowers
The home I love
 
My home
Stands among coco palms
Majestic coco palms that
Sway gently
 
Lovely home
Home by the sea
The bright moon shines over
The whispering sea
 
Tell
The refrain of
My home in Lahaina
Filled with happiness