Hawaiian-Bluegrass: The Unlikely Connections Between Two Genres

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Last week I was sent out on mission to discover what connections could be found between two unlikely genres of music. When beginning my investigation I was determined to pick two genres that, on the surface seemed to have little in common but once you looked a little closer you would see that they are not that different after all. After some research I decided on Hawaiian folk and bluegrass music. At first both genres sound very different but with some examination connections are easily made. Musically the two genres link through their chord progression as well as their simple melodies and rhythms which are paired with rich textures.In order to see these connections some background information on both of the genres will help to paint a clearer picture. Hawaiian Folk music was first documented around 1778. Hawaii began a period of acculturation, with the opening of many styles in European music, including the hymns introduced by Protestant missionary choirs. Paniolos, Spanish-speaking Mexican cowboys, were especially influential. They introduced string instruments such as the guitar, while Portuguese immigrants brought the braguinha, similar to a ukulele. In the 1880s and 90s,King David Kalakaua promoted the growth of Hawaiian culture. Throughout this period, Hawaiian music evolved into a new individual style. Hawaiian folk music includes varieties of chanting, called mele and another meant for highly dance known as hula. Traditional Hawaiian music

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