Steel Trappings

Haumana: A Student's Journey Through Hawaiian Music and Steel Guitara

Haumana: A Student's Journey Through Hawaiian Music and Steel Guitar

February 1, 2017 • Steve TylkaEducation and Training

Ed. note: This is the first installment of an ongoing feature that will be authored by Steve Tylka. Here Steve will share his journey as he learns about the Hawaiian steel guitar. Steve hopes his experiences will benefit anyone thinking about embracing this instrument that's so very important to Hawaiian music and culture.

Aloha Friends,

I first experienced steel guitar in the 1990s while enjoying a family vacation in Waikiki. We spent most of our days under the shade of a Banyan tree behind the Moana Surfrider hotel. During the day hotel staff played Hawaiian music over the hotel's public address system which was followed by an afternoon filled with live performances by local steel guitarists. It immediately occurred to me that I was experiencing something magical and to this day I have been unable to mind music as beautiful and rich as that I have experienced on the beach of Waikiki.

Growing up in a musical family, I was encouraged to seek out lessons after acquiring my first steel guitar. While searching online I came across lessonswithtroy.com, a website offering numerous steel guitar classes. Troy Brenningmeyer guides the student step by step through his arrangements of many classic songs, offering demonstrations of the material covered in his video lessons. As I progressed through Troy's website I learned of another steel player offering video courses similar to those I had grown accustomed to. Mike Neer's website, "Steelin' From The Masters," introduces Mike's views on steel guitar as well as his skill as an arranger. In utilizing both websites I was able to develop a better understanding of the steel guitar while gaining confidence to move forward in my studies.

It wasn't long before I sought out formal lessons on steel guitar. I quickly discovered Alan Akaka's Ke Kula Mele School of Hawaiian Music. Being a fan of Hawaiian music and Hawaiian Steel Guitar I was familiar with Alan Akaka and his many achievements. I quickly arranged my first steel guitar lesson and have been a studying under Kumu (teacher) Alan regularly ever since. In studying under Kumu Alan Akaka, I have gained tools which allow me to grow as an instrumentalist. Alan nurtures and develops the musical abilities of each student while providing opportunities to demonstrate ones skill as a developing musician at his annual Steel Guitar festivals throughout the Hawaiian Islands.

In closing, I would like to thank everyone I have met through the steel guitar community. I have discovered an extension of myself which seemed just beyond my grasp. Mahalo to Alan Akaka, Troy Brenningmeyer, Mike Neer, and Addison Ching for everything you do for the steel guitar community! I look forward to writing more in the future, and I hope this article finds all of you in good health.

Until next time friends,

Aloha

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HIMELE Events
2023 Festivals and Workshops
Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Ka Makana Ali‘i
February 18, 2023 – Ka Makana Ali‘i Shopping Center, Kapolei

Kona Steel Guitar Festival
March 23-25, 2023 – Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa, Keauhou, Hawai‘i

Kaua‘i Hawaiian Steel Guitar Symposium *
May 3-4, 2023 – Sheraton Coconut Beach Resort, Kapa‘a, Hawai‘i

Kaua‘i Steel Guitar Festival
May 4-6, 2023 – Sheraton Coconut Beach Resort, Kapa‘a, Hawai‘i
May 7, 2023 – Kukui Grove Center, Lihue, Hawai‘i

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Windward Mall
June 10, 2023 – Windward Mall, Kāne‘ohe

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Week
July 10-15, 2023 – Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival
July 14, 2023 – Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Festival
July 15, 2023 – Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival Keiki Kine at Kāhala Mall
August 19, 2023 – Kahala Mall, Honolulu

2023 Northern California Hawaiian Steel Guitar Symposium *
September 24, 2023 – Odd Fellows Lodge, Cupertino, CA

Maui Steel Guitar Festival
October 14, 2023 – The Shops at Wailea, Wailea, Hawai‘i
11:00 AM - 4:00 PM HST
October 15, 2023 – Queen Ka‘ahumanu Center, Kahului, Hawai‘i
11:00 AM - 4:00 PM HST

2023 Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Livestream Broadcasts

Facebook LiveYouTube
All broadcasts originate from the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Facebook Page and YouTube Channel. Festival broadcasts may also stream from the respective festival's Facebook Page.


Livestream Steel Guitar Saturday
January 28, 2023 – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Ka Makana Ali‘i
February 18, 2023 – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST

Kona Steel Guitar Festival
March 25, 2023 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 12:00 Noon - 3 PM and 5 PM - 8 PM HST

Livestream Steel Guitar Saturday - Live from Molokai!
April 22, 2023 (tentative) – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST

Kaua‘i Steel Guitar Festival
May 6, 2023 – Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 12:00 Noon - 3 PM and 5 PM - 8 PM HST

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Windward Mall
June 10, 2023 – 11:30 PM - 4:00 PM HST

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival
July 14, 2023 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 4PM - 6:30PM HST


Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Festival
July 15, 2023 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 11AM - 2PM and 4:30PM - 6:30PM HST
Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival Keiki Kine at Kahala Mall
August 19, 2023 – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST

Livestream Steel Guitar Saturday
September 9, 2023 – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST

Maui Steel Guitar Festival
October 15, 2023 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – Queen Ka‘ahumanu Center, – 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM HST

Livestream Steel Guitar Saturday
November 19, 2023 – 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM HST


Other Events
HSGA Virtual Festival 4
February 4, 2023 Facebook LiveYouTube

2023 AISGC Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival *
July 27-29, 2023 – Towne Square Community Center, Winchester, IN
Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association (HSGA) 2023 Festival *
September 21-23, 2023 – Odd Fellows Lodge, Cupertino, CA
* Registration Fee Required

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About HIMELE
HIMELE is a Hawai‘i non-profit corporation that supports music enrichment and education for people of all ages. Our purpose is to educate, promote, and perpetuate Hawaiian music, Hawaiian culture and Hawaiian musical instruments.