For over thirty years, Keola Beamer
's artistry has helped breathe new life into slack key guitar music while remaining true to the soul of its deeply Hawaiian roots. Born February 18, 1951, in Honolulu, Keola grew up in one of Hawai'i's most famous music families. The Beamers can trace their involvement in Hawaiian music and hula at least as far as the 15th Century.
Keola's sixth Dancing Cat album, Ka Hikina O Ka Hau (The Coming Of The Snow)
, is not a traditional slack key recording. "It poses a simple question," he says. "Can the palette, coloration and tonality of Ki ho'alu add an indefinable something to the interpretation of songs written by truly great composers?" The answer is a wonderful surprise.
The album features eighteen arrangements of classical compositions by Satie, Ravel, Stravinsky, Mendelssohn, Rimsky-Korsakov, Dowland, Piazzolla
and others, as well as two more Hawaiian inspired pieces. For the first time Hawaiian Slack Key guitar tunings have been used to interpret the works of classical composers, resulting in a romantic, winter oriented album that uniquely blends both the Hawaiian Slack Key and classical music traditions.
Arranged for two or three guitars, specifically for Keola by musicologist, guitarist, and linguist Daniel O'Donoghue, Ka Hikina O Ka Hau (The Coming Of The Snow)
highlights Keola on acoustic nylon string, acoustic steel-string, and electric guitars, overdubbing multiple tracks to create a truly unique sound.
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