Dancing Cat’s second slack key guitar compilation CD draws
from Dancing Cat recordings in the ongoing Hawaiian slack key guitar masters
series, including two previously unavailable bonus tracks. The many artists on
this album represent the very best from Hawai’i. This collection contains both
vocal and instrumental tracks, demonstrating how slack key can be played solo,
in duets or with varying accompaniment (‘ukulele, acoustic steel guitar and
two or more guitars). This compilation serves as a great introduction to the
wealth of artists and styles characterizing slack key guitar today. Review
This second album in Dancing Cat Records’ Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Masters
Series produced by George Winston follows its successful Hawaiian Slack Key
Guitar Masters. Again the masters of the genre are featured in several well-
known tunes such as Lili’uokalani’s “Aloha ‘Oe” (played here by George
Kahumoku) and “‘Ulili E” (Dennis and David Kamakahi), as well as modern
originals and two tracks that had not been available on CD before: “Ulu Niu
Ke’eke’e” (George Kahumoku and Kekuhi Kanahele) and “Slack Key Serenade”
(Leonard Kwan and Ozzie Kotani). The liner notes provide complete information
on each song’s original album. A balance of instrumental and vocal tracks, the
compilation is a terrific starting point for exploring the artistic and
stylistic diversity in modern slack key. Instruments on this album include
everything from traditional mouth bow, ‘ukulele, and percussion stones to
12-string slack key and modern acoustic guitars. Elder statesman Ray Kane
lullabies us with his simple instrumental “Popoki Slack Key” (popoki means
“little cat”); renowned improviser Cyril Pahinui and Sol Hoopii-influenced Bob
Brozman combine 12-string slack key and acoustic steel guitar interpreting
“Hilo E” and “Lili’u E” in a style evocative of the 1920s. Showing off how
slack key works solo, in duets, or with mixed accompaniment, this is one of
the most beautiful slack key compilations out there. –Erik Macki —
- Audio CD (July 27, 1999)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: Double CD
- Label: Dancing Cat Records
- Run Time: 70.36 minutes
- #71 in Hawaiian Music
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