I regard myself as a complete novice when it comes to Hawaiian music, so when IanB suggested I did a series of posts on Hawaiian tunes I was a bit reticent. But reading Nerd’s Eye View‘s trip to Hawaii (and particularly her visit to the Ukulele Gallery) has put me in the island mood. So, I had a go at tabbing out Papalina Lahilahi.
The arrangement is just a simple melody with the accompanying chords. If you want to work up a solo version, it’s easy to do. Hawaiian melodies are usually very strongly based on the chords. You can create an arrangement by holding down the chord shapes and strumming the chords while there are no melody notes. Here’s my attempt at it.
According to this article in the New York Times, “In Hawaiian songs, lovemaking is referred to poetically by mentioning mist, spray, rain.” Which makes the line in this song, “Your dainty cheeks/Always damp from sea spray,” sound decidedly icky.