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Hanohano Ka Lei Pīkake: Keali’i Reichel

As far as contemporary Hawaiian music goes, Keali’i Reichel is one of my favorite artists. Everything he does is great, live or in the studio.

Hanohano Ka Lei Pīkake is a simple tune so it’s natural to teach it to beginning students. You don’t find an easy and great-sounding song everyday. The problem is singing it like Keali’i!

It is not in the key of the recording (Ab) so you can’t play along. But if you want to learn it, spin the song on repeat for a couple days until you know how it’s supposed to sound really well. Then pick up your ‘ukulele and start strumming the chords and humming. Unless you’re competent in the Hawaiian language, definitely don’t try singing the words right away! They are relatively difficult and will taking some studying on their own. So learn the timing and chord changes while humming and then (and only then) try to add in the words.

Hanohano Ka Lei Pīkake
By Keali’i Reichel

Meet The Author:

Brad Bordessa

Brad plays 'ukulele on the Big Island of Hawai'i. He writes original music, performs, and hunts unicorns - all with only an 'ukulele.

3 comments… add one
  • georgie Jan 12, 2015, 2:57 am

    Nice sound. As a newbie in this kind of albums i have to discovery a lot of gems yet…

  • Ingeborg Ruess Feb 4, 2015, 10:39 pm

    Alooooha Brad
    Thank you very much for posting “Hanohano Lei Pikake”.
    Keali’i Reichel is also one of my favourite Hawaiian Musician.
    Lucky I am, I own the CD Kawaipunahele since it was released. So, I have the english translation:-))
    But, there is still a question left, maybe you can help me out in answering that.
    Referring to my very limited understanding about Hawaiian language, I guess the meaning behind the
    words written dawn, it is a love song for a person he really wants to be close to.
    At least let me tell, it’s a pleasure to see you grow in many ways, in the music scene, your work on your webpage. I use to give the URL to my Uke fellows in Switzerland and Germany.
    Hope to see you to the 10th anniversary down on Pahala
    Aloha a hui hou

    • Brad Bordessa Feb 5, 2015, 6:27 pm

      Aloha Ingeborg, I think you hit the nail on the head. My Hawaiian won’t turn up any more than the translation can provide. They say only the composer truly knows the meaning of a Hawaiian song with deep kaona (hidden meaning). Keali’i is a quiet guy, but very nice the few times I’ve met him. I’d try and ask him personally if you get a chance! Thank you for sharing the site, ~Brad

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