Page 14

Alive_Jan_2016

Hawaii Calls The music and A L I V E E A S T 14 B A Y j a n u a r y 2 0 1 6 instruments of Hawaii DR. LAWRENCE E. ANDERSON Founding Director and Conductor Emeritus Danville Community Band The music of Hawaii is unique in many ways and has evolved through the centuries. The customs, culture and music of the Polynesian Islands and other foreign lands, all contributed to what we know as Hawaiian music today. Before the Europeans arrived in the islands, the Polynesians basically had only chants and dances, rather than the melodies and rhythms heard in more modern times. Much of the early music was religious in nature. These ancient Hawaiian rituals were a means of preserving history, honoring deities and organizing genealogies. Chants were often accompanied by an Ipu (a gourd drum) or a Pahu, (a sharkskin drum). Later, many musical influences came from America and Europe. The most influential group of people were the missionaries who came to the islands in the 18th Century from New England. They brought with them the music and instruments they played in their homeland. These influences changed much of Hawaiian music. Many Hawaiian songs have hymn-like melodies stemming from the early songs taught by the missionaries. The music of Tahiti and Samoa also had a great influence on Hawaiian music. Both the Tahitian and Samoan styles of music use faster and more complicated rhythms. The early 20th Century saw the emergence of “Hapa Haole” music (part Hawaiian, part white). These songs generally used the English language for the text and in 1906, the first recordings were made. By 1912, Hawaiian music became popular on the mainland. The years 1930 to 1960 were known as the Golden Age of Hawaiian Music. It wasn’t long before music eclipsed pineapples as a major export of the Hawaiian Islands. The music of the islands enjoyed phenomenal momentum on the mainland. Music and other Hawaiiana became a national rage. New York’s Tin Pan Alley produced music based on Hawaiian themes and sheet music sold by the thousands. Around the turn of the century, famed band leader and composer, Albert “Sonny” Cunha, a Hawaiian, Yale alumnus, adopted Moanalua Hula into Yale’s school song, Boola, Boola. Cunha hired Johnny Noble and his orchestra, and Noble introduced a new jazz style to Hawaiian music, hence, modern Hawaiian music came of age. Other modern influences came


Alive_Jan_2016
To see the actual publication please follow the link above