Ki-Ho Alu Foundation, Inc. - Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival



Welcome to the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival. Please feel free to email us with your comments & suggestions. Kī hō`alu, translating literally from the Hawaiian as “loosen the key,” indicating the tuning in slack key guitar technique, is a musical tradition dating back to 19th century paniolo who played around the campfire after completing a day of ranch work. Slack key has become known as one of the world’s great acoustic guitar methods, especially since the Grammy Awards at one time recognized Hawaiian music as a category all its own. Food & beverages will be available for purchase. In addition to beverages available for purchase, multiple food vendors will be available. No outside food & beverages allowed. Gabby Pahinui 1921-1980 Gabby Pahinui helped to lay the foundation for Hawaiian slack key guitar playing. Although he recorded only one internationally released album, Gabby Pahinui Hawaiian Band Vol. 1. His influence continues to be reflected in the playing of Hawaiian slack key players and American guitarists including John Fahey, Leo Kottke, and Ry Cooder. During an early-'90s interview, Pahinui's son, James "Bla" Pahinui. Also a skilled slack key guitarist, he recalled, "My dad got away with a lot of stuff because it worked. He touched so many people because he shared what was in his heart in such an honest and direct way. Pahinui recorded the first slack key recordings in 1946. He continued to lead his own band, the Sons of Hawai'I, until the early '70s when he formed a new group with his sons Charles, Cyril, and James. Their first steps towards international fame came when Ry Cooder traveled to Hawaii to record Gabby Pahinui Hawaiian Band, Vol. 1, during a two-week-long session at Pahinui's home in Kona in 1975. The home had been the site for nightly jam sessions for many years. The same year, Pahinui made a guest appearance on Cooder's album Chicken Skin. ~ Craig Harris, All Music Guide

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