Masters of Hawaiian Music: George Kahumoku Jr., Led Kaapana and Jeff Peterson

The New York Times dubs Masters of Hawaiian Music “Virtuosic keepers of a cultural flame.” Three master slack key artists share Hawaii’s unique folk styles with origins in early 19th century Hawaiian paniolo (cowboy) culture. George Kahumoku Jr, Led Kaapana and Jeff Peterson were raised in rural areas where immersion in Hawaiian music and culture was both entertainment and education.

Four-time Grammy-winning slack key guitarist George Kahumoku Jr. is known as “Hawaii’s Renaissance Man.” Since 2003 Kahumoku has been the host of the live Slack Key Show: Masters of Hawaiian Music, guests of which have been featured on his compilation recordings. Led Kaapana has been one of Hawaii’s most influential musicians for decades. He has many recordings to his credit, including a project with Allison Krauss, Jerry Douglas and other bluegrass legends called Waltz of the Wind. He has worked with Dolly Parton and Chet Atkins, as well as with Hawaii’s top talents including Aunty Genoa Keawe and Barney Isaacs. Jeff Peterson is a star of the next generation, having won the 2017 Na Hoku Award for Best Instrumental Album. Five of Peterson’s songs are featured in the award-winning George Clooney film The Descendants.

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George Kahumoku Jr., slack key guitar, vocals
Led Kaapana, slack key guitar, vocals and ukulele
Jeff Peterson, slack key guitar

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Photo © Shane Tegarden