Sonny Lim

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Sonny Lim
Sonny Lim, Slack Key Guitarist
Background information
Origin Waimea, Hawaii County, Hawaii
Instruments Slack-key guitar
Associated acts Lim Family, Makaha Sons of Ni’ihau
Notable instruments
Slack-key guitar

Elmer "Sonny" Lim is a Hawaiian musician and slack key guitar player from Waimea (Kamuela) on the Big Island of Hawaii. Sonny is part of the musical Lim Family, which is also famous in the 50th State.

Sonny's father, Elmer Lim Sr., who was a Paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) on the famed Parker ranch and later worked for the ranch himself. In this respect, Sonny carries on the slack key tradition born amongst Waimea Cowboys over a hundred years earlier. Like Ledward Kaapana, however, Sonny learned primarily from Kaapana's uncle, Kalapana slack key master Fred Punahoa, who moved in with Sonny's family for several weeks to teach him.

In addition to playing with the Lim Family, Sonny played with the Makaha Sons of Ni’ihau (using the stage name "Kohala") in the late-1970s, and he has shared the stage with many other Hawaiian artists such as Cyril Pahinui.

He can be heard on the Grammy Award-winning anthology album, "Slack Key Guitar Volume 2", as well as his solo debut album, "Slack Key Guitar: The Artistry of Sonny Lim," which was a Grammy Award finalist although it did not win.

Both albums available on Palm Records.

External links[edit]