Saturday, August 28, 2010

On Pacific Island music (then - my KRRC radio theme songs)

Now I am certainly not an expert on Pacific Island music, but I have run across it from time to time.

Back when I attended Reed College, I had a show on the college radio station, KRRC. The show had a name (I named it after a former classmate who transferred out), an impressive advertising campaign (assembled via a typewriter, cut-outs from newspapers, and a photocopier), and a theme song. The theme song was taken from a record in the library (back then, the entire library consisted of records). The record included a collection of artists, and was entitled Hawaiian Steel Guitar 1920's To 1950's.

The theme song that I chose for my radio show was "Indiana March" by Roy Smeck. This was a fast number, played on the steel guitar in a semi-Hawaiian style. If Sousa had ever been forced to abandon brass and woodwinds, perhaps he could have played this march. I couldn't find an online copy of Smeck's rendition, but I did find a video with Sol Hoopii's version.

I used this as my radio show theme song for a while, but eventually I dropped it and switched to the next track on the same album, M. K. Moke's "Moana Chimes." This is a much slower number, very peaceful, and had absolutely nothing to do with the rest of the music that I played during my radio show (your typical early 80s mixture of Devo, Talking Heads, Wall of Voodoo, and the like). Again, I couldn't find the original version, but I did find this tribute video.

But that was almost 30 years ago. What about now? Well, you'll have to go to my Empoprise-IE Inland Empire blog to find out more.
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