Hawaiian War Chant

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"Hawaiian War Chant"
Song
Written 1860s
Writer(s) Prince Leleiohoku
Language Hawaiian
Recorded by Crowel Glee Club, Tommy Dorsey, Les Paul & Mary Ford, Bill Haley & His Comets, Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys
Performed by Hilo Hattie, Shinji Maki, Sandi Griffiths and Sally Flynn

"Hawaiian War Chant" was an American popular song whose original melody and lyrics were written in the 1860s by Prince Leleiohoku.[1] The original title of the song was Kāua I Ka Huahuaʻi or "We Two in the Spray." It was not written as a chant, and the Hawaiian lyrics describe a clandestine meeting between two lovers, not a battle. The English title therefore has nothing to do with the song as it was originally written and performed in Hawaii.

History[edit]

Under the original title, the song was recorded around June 1911 by the Crowel Glee Club, and released by Columbia Records.[2]

English lyrics by Ralph Freed were written in 1936 and the melody changed somewhat at that time by Johnny Noble. Tommy Dorsey recorded it on November 29, 1938, and it was released on Victor Records in the United States and Canada.[3] In a 1942 performance, Dorsey's band featured drummer Buddy Rich and trumpeter Ziggy Elman for this song.[4] The song was featured in the 1942 film Ship Ahoy starring Eleanor Powell, Red Skelton and the Tommy Dorsey Band.

She[who?] also credited comedy bandleader Spike Jones for popularizing an uptempo comedic version of the song. Jones' February 1946[5] Victor recording, with Carl Grayson on vocal, reached number eight on the charts, according to Joel Whitburn.

Sources[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "William Pitt Leleiohoku". Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2013-06-19. 
  2. ^ Rockwell, T. Malcolm (2007). Hawaiian & Hawaiian Guitar Records 1891 - 1960. Kula, Hawaii: Mahina Piha Press. p. 184. 
  3. ^ Rockwell, T. Malcolm (2007). Hawaiian & Hawaiian Guitar Records 1891 - 1960. Kula, Hawaii: Mahina Piha Press. p. 220. 
  4. ^ Gilliland, John (1994). Pop Chronicles the 40s: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40s (audiobook). ISBN 978-1-55935-147-8. OCLC 31611854.  Tape 2, side A.
  5. ^ Rockwell, T. Malcolm (2007). Hawaiian & Hawaiian Guitar Records 1891 - 1960. Kula, Hawaii: Mahina Piha Press. p. 552. 

Further reading[edit]

Young, Jordan R. (2005). Spike Jones Off the Record: The Man Who Murdered Music. (3rd edition) Albany: BearManor Media ISBN 1-59393-012-7.