Eddie Kamae

Eddie Kamae (4 August 1927 - January 7, 2017) was a Hawaiian musician, one of the founding members of Sons of Hawaii. He was a 'ukulele virtuoso, singer, composer, film producer and primary proponent of the Hawaiian Cultural Renaissance*. Eddie Leilani Kamae was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, and raised both there and in Lahaina, Maui. His grandmother was a dancer for King David Kalākaua's court. He learned to play the 'ukulele with an instrument his bus driver brother found on the public transport. Eddie would sit by the radio and try to play with any rhythm section he was hearing, usually Latin, classical and jazz tunes. When he was 14 years old, his father would take him to jam sessions where Eddie would get up on stage to play, earning accolades from the audiences who threw money at the performers' feet. Kamae began going to Queen's Surf to listen to the Hawaiian music being played. In 1948, Kamae and Shoi Ikemi formed the Ukulele Rascals, the first known professional all-ukulele act. Eddie began to teach 'ukulele. 2006 'Ukulele Hall of Fame Inductee Herb Ohta Sr., also known at Ohta-San, was mentored by Eddie. Eddie Kamae died on January 7, 2017 at the age of 89. Sons of Hawaii Kamae was introduced to Gabby Pahinui in 1959, and the slack key virtuoso demonstrated a new way to make the 'ukuleke talk story. Eddie himself would come to be known for his inventive methods of plucking all four strings simultaneously, playing the chords and melody at the same time. They bega...

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