Brief History of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar


Hawaiian Slack Key guitar (ki ho`alu) is one of the world’s great acoustic guitar traditions. However, due to Hawai`i’s isolation (the islands lie furthest in the world from any major land masses), ki ho`alu remains one of the least known traditions. Ki ho`alu, which literally means “loosen the key,” is the Hawaiian-language name for this unique finger-picked style. The strings (or “keys”) are “slacked” to produce many beautiful tunings, almost always based on a Major tonality. They often contain a full Major chord, or a chord with a major seventh note, or a chord with a sixth note. Each tuning produces acharacteristic resonance behind the melody; and each has its own characteristic color and flavor, like a beautiful basket of fruit…)

Brief History of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar

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