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Kika KilaHow the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Changed the Sound of Modern Music$
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John W. Troutman

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781469627922

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469627922.001.0001

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Hawaiian Troubadours and the Global Reach of the Kīkā Kila

Hawaiian Troubadours and the Global Reach of the Kīkā Kila

(p.104) 4 Hawaiian Troubadours and the Global Reach of the Kīkā Kila
Kika Kila

John W. Troutman

University of North Carolina Press

Relying principally on letters, scrapbooks, interviews, and other personal recollections by musicians such as Joseph Puni and Queenie and David Kaili, this chapter illuminates the experiences of steel guitarists laboring in Europe and Asia during the early to mid-twentieth century. Their stories, while often quite personal and unique, speak to common themes encountered by performers navigating interpersonal relationships as well as broader, geopolitical forces during this period. Letters home from steel guitarist Kiwini Panui in London reveal the joys and curiosities of encountering new lands and new peoples, as well as new communities of Hawaiians already abroad. The recollections of Tau Moe and his daughter Dorian, meanwhile, demonstrate not only the challenges encountered by foreign audience dynamics and expectation but also a stunning tale of intrigue behind enemy lines in Nazi Germany. Their extensive touring also launched a craze for steel guitars that continues to shape popular music in India by guitarists such as Garney Nyss, Sri Brij Bhushan Kabra, and Debashish Bhattacharya.

Keywords:   Queenie Kaili, David Kaili, Joseph Puni, Kiwini Panui, Tau Moe, Dorian Moe, Garney Nyss, Sri Brij Bhushan Kabra, Debashish Bhattacharya

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