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Ray Kane, christened Raymond Kaleoalohapoinaoleohelemanu Kane, born on Oct 2, 1925 on the island of Kawai, died of respiratory failure on Feb. 27, 2008.

Mr. Kane was one of the first people to bring the slack-key guitar into the concert hall. In 1973 he he gave what is believed to have been the first full-length solo slack-key guitar recital at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu.

In 1987 he was named a National Heritage Fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Mr. kane wanted the slack-key guitar to live forever and to make sure the next generation gets the same opportunities that he had. In an interview he said: "The music I play is not really my music. It was given to me."

Mr.Kane is survived by his wife, Elodia, a traditional singer who often performed with him. He leaves seven children, many grandchildren and two siblings.


I was very fortunate to have heard Mr. Kane play.

May he continue to play with the angels.

Love, Inda

Aloha is found in silence,
lived in peace,
and passed on in love.

Traditional Hawaiian
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I remember being in Hawaii reading Ray Kane's full name wondering how I would pronounce it.

May he rest in peace.


Ray Kane (1925-2008)
"This is the music I love. It's the music I've been playing for over sixty years. That's a long time, but I want it to live forever. You know, the music I play is not really my music. It was given to me. All I've done is take care of it while it was my turn and try to make sure the next generation gets the same opportunities I've had. That's all I've done. And I've loved every minute of it. You better believe it!"
Last edited by yoko
Thank you for this beeeautiful post dearestest Inda!

Rest in peace Dear Ray Kane (player of the Hawaiian harp Hula Tiki Nut)

Originally posted by dear Inda:

Mr.Kane is survived by his wife, Elodia, a traditional singer who often performed with him. He leaves seven children, many grandchildren and two siblings.


Ray Kane playing slack-key guitar at home
in Nanakuli, O'ahu

Photo by Lynn Martin, 1992

Slack-key guitar playing in Hawai'i

Pua Sardinia (Gardenia Flower)," composed and performed by Raymond Kane

First phrase, 116 kB .AU

Complete stanza, 429 kB .AU

Spanish and Mexican cowboys who worked on
the numerous cattle ranches throughout Hawai'i introduced the guitar to the islands. They brought a playing style that
influenced the development of k� h� 'alu (slack-key guitar).

They say that the art of the slack-key guitar is to Hawai'i as the flamenco guitar is to Spain and the Delta blues guitar is to Mississippi. Each style represents the music indigenous to the particular areas as expressed through a single instrument--the six string guitar. Each style is a unique contribution to the world of music. Slack-key guitar music is a uniquely Hawaiian
synthesis of traditional Hawaiian vocal styles with elements of Western music. In slack-key guitar, the
six strings are loosened or "slackened" to produce an open chord when strummed. This remarkable and creative style is traditionally learned by imitation, without tablature or scores.

tunings have names, such as "taro patch," "wahine," and "mauna loa." Like
Hawaiian songs, some tunings are said to be passed down from one person to another. In older times,
some tunings were regarded as secret, much like a recipe for a favorite food or the text for a special

mele chant. It is not unusual for a slack-key guitarist to turn away from an audience to tune, so that no one can copy his private tuning.

Slack-key tunings give rise to specific melodic and harmonic patterns, sometime called "runs" or "vamps." These patterns form the building blocks for composition and improvisation. In the Hawaiian language, the slack-key vamp and the transitional phase of a hula are both called k�holo, another tie between pre-European Hawaiian music and slack-key guitar style.

The melodic and harmonic contour of slack-key resembles ancient Hawaiian chant, mele. The slack-key guitarist plucks out the melody on the treble strings, while plucking out a harmonizing rhythmic line on the bass strings. The guitarist may also intersperse strummed chords within the plucked melodic line.

Slack-key tunings also allow the guitarist to insert ornaments such as hammer-ons, hammer-offs, and harmonics. Called ho'op�p�, or "bells" or "chimes," the guitarist produces harmonics by touching the string above the fretboard at specific vibration nodes without making contact with the frets. Slack-key ornaments resemble vocal ornaments in Hawaiian chanting.

Have the heart of a gypsy, and the dedication of a soldier -Beethoven in Beethoven Lives Upstairs


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  • raykane
Last edited by Teo
May this Master of beauty rest in peace ... and bless the inhabitants of Celestial Paradise with his music and with his voice.
While I am writing I am listening to the samples of amazon. So beautiful! What it must be to hear it on the shores of Hawaii!!
What harmony and inner echoes!
Love and peace.
Margherita 2Hearts
Will have to come back here to read more.
Thank you all for your prayers and thank you Teo for all the information you have posted for us.

Ray Kane will continue to play his beautiful music until eternity.

Love, Inda

Aloha exists beyond motives,
desires or opinions. It is sustained
by love, fortified by compassion,
and it expands in power and beauty
as we give it away to all who come into our lives

Traditional Hawaiian
Last edited by Inda
Thank you Sylvie for adding your prayer
for Ray Kane.

Love, Inda

Aloha is the center of all things Hawaiian. It is through aloha that all other Hawaiian values have meaning. The spirit of aloha affects everything we do, not so much in words, it doesn't come from the mouth, it comes from the action. To show you have aloha is from your action and how you deal with things.

Na'auao Pane'e

Mt. Haleakala

Ray Kane will always send a song filled with Aloha down to Hawaii.
Last edited by Inda

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