Remembering Hawaiian Slack Key Master Cyril Pahinui

Cyril Pahinui at Hi`ilawe

Cyril Pahinui
Aired on NPR’s Newscast,” Nov. 19, 2018
By Heidi Chang

Hawaiian music fans are mourning the loss of a musician who was a member of one of Hawaii’s most respected musical families. Their music has touched many around the world and been featured on countless albums, including the soundtrack of the movie “The Descendants.” Heidi Chang has this appreciation.

Listen to the Story (45 seconds)

(Cyril is playing “Hi’ilawe” on guitar)

Cyril Pahinui was a Hawaiian slack key guitar master, who contributed to three Grammy Award-winning albums. In 2017, he was honored as a heritage fellow by the National Endowment for the Arts. Cyril performed with many of Hawaii’s top musicians, including his father and brothers in the legendary Gabby Pahinui Hawaiian Band. Cyril was inspired by his father, the legendary Gabby Pahinui.

“My father would tell me, son, follow your heart, play how you feel, and do the best you can,” said Cyril.

Cyril’s health had been declining for several years. He died on Saturday in Honolulu.  He was 68.


Remembering Beloved Hawaiian Musician Martin Pahinui, NPR

Remembering A Legendary Hawaiian Musician (Gabby Pahinui), NPR

Soundtracking “The Descendants” With “Real” Hawaiian Music – NPR

Bla Pahinui – NPR profile

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