Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Sol Hoopii and Hawaiian Slide Guitar

Players like Sol Hoopii, Bennie Nawahi, Sam Ku West were huge influences on American popular music during the 1920's when they all came over to the west coast from Hawaii so I thought it would be nice to take the time to revisit these guys.

Actually, there are some who even think that the main source of slide guitar in pre-war blues actually came from this Hawaiian steel guitar craze! Personally, I think this is doubtful - take for instance, W.C. Handy at the Tutwiler train station seeing an anonymous bluesman using a pocketknife slide as early as 1903. Still though, there is no doubt that Hawaiian music had its effect on the blues...Blind Willie Johnson used a First Hawaiian Conservatory Stella guitar. In fact, you can even tell that musicians like Louis Armstrong and Bing Crosby styled their singing upon how Hawaiian steel guitar was phrased.

Here's a sample of this great music...

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