View Full Version : Hawaiian songs that are must learns?

10-22-2010, 04:19 PM
Any suggestions.
In the few months I've played uke, It's just been whatever I could find tabs for.
I've played Brudduh Iz's Somewhere Over the Rainbow, but I think it's time to teach myself to play something by ear and to showcase what my soprano was made to play, I would like some Hawaiian/ukulele songs that are easy to ear train with.
Thanks, guys. You have been really helpful.

mm stan
10-22-2010, 04:58 PM
Aloha Calebcat,
Try TropicalStormHawaii...Got tons of Hawaiian songs...Have fun and enjoy!! Keep Strumming them strings...MM Stan...

Ukulele JJ
10-23-2010, 03:03 AM
I've always thought that Aloha Oe was the quintessential "Hawaiian" song.

But I'm as Haole as the day is long, so take that with a grain of salt. :-)


10-23-2010, 03:17 AM
I'm not sure what a Hawaiian song is anymore. Many songs that Ha ole's like me think of when we think of Hawaiian music were made up in Hollywood or some other Mainland location. Over the Rainbow certainly fits into that category. There are, of course true Hawaiian native songs. I haven't been playing that long, but songs which pop into my mind when I think of Hawaii and the ukulele include:

Pearly Shells
Blue Hawaii
Aloha Oe
Hawaiian Wedding Song
White Sandy Beach
Over the Rainbow
Little Grass Shack
Harbor Lights
Beyond the Reef
Lovely Hula Hands

Interestingly, at the last SEUkers meeting we were given a lesson by Wally Choi (http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1135170763) (Wally (http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/member.php?34558-Wally-Choi) was formerly a member of the Royal Drifters, which pre-dated Hawaii becoming a state) on how to play "Crazy G." I had heard Jake play it before, but Wally, who grew up in Hawaii, told us its one of the first song most kids in Hawaii learn to play.

Ian Chadwick has a treasure trove of old ukulele books on his excellent website (http://www.ianchadwick.com/ukuleles/uke_music.htm). Several are dedicated to Hawaiian music.

The Wikipedia article on Hawaiian music (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_of_Hawaii) has some interesting info on on this.

10-23-2010, 05:19 AM
Traditional, Contemporary, Hapa Haole, Slack-key or Kī Ho`alu, Jawaiian are several categories/classifications of Hawaiian music. As far as what are quintessential songs? I think any of the Traditional mele (songs with Hawaiian lyrics) like Aloha 'Oe (http://www.nalu-music.com/ukulele-tablature/aloha-oe-with-ukulele-accompaniment/) written by Queen Lili`uokalani can fall in that area. A lot of the songs mentioned above are Hapa Haole songs, english lyrics with a Hawaiian tune. The original wedding song was Lei Aloha, Lei Makamae and the Hawaiian Wedding Song is the english version (by Al Hoffman and Dick Manning) of Ke Kali Nei Au written by Charles King in the mid 1820's. Over the Rainbow and White Sandy Beach are contemporary songs. Refer to the following threads for other traditional and contemporary songs.