THE SITE IS BEST VIEWED WITH GOOGLE CHROME AND A MONOCLE
Saturday, May 30, 2009
by Tony Lindsey & Friends
Circa late 1950s/early 1960s
By hunting, you can still find a place or few hidden in the shadows of the glittering tourist attractions at Wakiki...and even in the middle of the action on Honolulu town's Hotel Street...where local people go to enjoy this kind of music. But mostly anymore, you have to go to neighborhood clubs and country taverns...and there are dozens...to hear it live.
Now because local people like all kinds of music and like to dance, in any given set you'll hear everything: top rock, cowboy, cotchy-cotchy (Latin, if you're not local), thirties show tunes, Hawaiian songs as popular now s they have been for a hundred years...and any of a couple dozen tunes from elsewhere that Hawaiians have taken to heart. These, you'll observe, have certain similar characteristics: they're sentimental, ballad style, somewhat old-fashioned...and only a few enjoyed any amount of lasting or widespread fame anywhere but here. Please Don't Ever Think of Me, It Wouldn't Be the Same Without You, Out in the Cold Again are three of these that have been so literally adopted that most local people would realize with surprise, and only if reminded, that they were not local songs from the start. Tony now adds Like Strangers and I Don't See Me in Your Eyes Any More to this select list.
So wide a repertory demands musicians more versatile and accomplished than the combos playing only pop-rock in establishments where you have to wear shoes, pay cover charge and spend half and hour to find a parking place that costs more than a whole round would in the neighborhood or the country.
Here, too, the musicians' contact with the audience is more direct, more personal: the entertainment is seldom limited to the bandstand. That's where it starts, but it takes in the whole room. People understand, appreciate and enjoy the happenings. They talk with the musicians, sing along from the tables, join the act with or without invitation and sing, play music, dance hula if and when and how they feel like it. The entertainers may wind up in the house, applauding customers who have taken over the bandstand. The scene is always as lib, occasionally hazardous, but it's more fun that way...for the musicians and the customers.
When anything or anyone hits big, everyone tries to figure out why. Like: did Tony Lindsey make Blue Darling a hit, or was it the other way around? That's like asking which is the more important part of a cup of coffee: the cup or the coffee? In any event, if local- style music is your cup of coffee, then Tony Lindsey & Friends is your cup of tea.
Tony Lindsey comes from Molokai, where his father was sheriff. While the large family of brothers and sisters were growing up to follow more conventional occupations, Tony elected otherwise. After high school graduation in Honolulu, he was off to the mainland for seven years, studying art before and after military service.
Home again in Honolulu, he was for several years an artist and designer for one of Hawaii's first, largest and best-known houses. From the same time, and for recreation, he played music too...as other people play golf, or whatever. Like so many other Hawaiian entertainers, he prefers music to be his fun, not his work.
Well-known to other Hawaiian musicians, well-known to the Island public too, his making a hit record probably seems a Cinderella thing to everyone else. And, in a way, it is...if you remember how long Cinderella worked away before she was discovered.
BLUE DARLING - Tony Lindsey
Tony tells it this way: some twenty years ago on the mainland, he started this song to apologize to his mother for being a bad kid. But she didn't live to hear it. And so, when he came home he could seldom be persuaded to sing it even for family, let alone in public. But those who did hear it didn't forget it, and they wouldn't let him forget it either. Everyone who remembers the song from the early fifties also remembers how hard it was to get Tony to sing it, then. Though as time went by, he sang it more and more often. It grew in popularity. Others sang it. It became a standard with practically every musician who entertains at the local places. And still, it was almost unknown to other musicians, other audiences. At this point, family and friends insisted that Tony copyright it. Many groups wanted to record it...and did...but Tony, realizing by now that a recording would have to happen, wanted to release the first one himself: the song was, after all, dedicated to his mother. His single, released just weeks before this album, and played only on Hawaiian-music radio, out-sold any other single by any other artist on any other label. This of course astounded the "hit-makers" but not the people. The people know how long and how well, how many have loved Blue Darling
NANAKULI - Unknown
Several individuals or combinations are said, or claim, to have composed this song...but two things are for sure: everybody has known and sung it for a number of years and it is generally thought to have been made as a rally song for a group of young political activists from this district of Oahu.
O ka leo o na manu (The people say)
E ho'i mai e pili. (Come back to stayu.)
Keiki o ka 'aina i ka pono (True children of the land)
A'o Nanakuli ea (Of Nanakuli)
E ho'i mai e pili. (Come back to stay)
PLEASE DON'T EVER THINK OF ME (I'LL BE LEAVING)
NA LIMAHANA - Charles R. Lindsey, Sr.
Tony's father wrote this song for the working man: a tribute of respect for useful work well done. Tony and Friends play it in the old Hawaiian slak-key style, the way his father used to do.
1. Aloha na kanaka e huli ana i ke ola (Aloha to the men seeking a living)
O na 'aina like 'ole puni ka honua (In the different lands around the world)
E ola no 'oe a mau loa. (May you live forever.)
HUI: He inoa keia no na limahana (CHORUS: This is a song dedicated to the working hands)
E luhi mau ana i keia noho ana. (Always laboring for a livelihood.)
2. Kou mau kalena ua kaulana (Your many talents are famous)
E ho'oi ae mau ana i na 'ike o ke ao (Always improving in the knowledge of the times)
A'i pono ho'i ia no ka lehulehu. (For the benefit of everyone.)
3. Kaulana 'oe Hawai'i a puni ka honua (Hawaii you are famous around the world)
I ka noho lokahi ana o ka lehilehu (For everyone getting along together)
A'e luhi like ana no ka no ka pono o ka 'aina (And laboring equally for the good of the land.)
OUT IN THE COLD AGAIN - Kochler & Bloom
KU'U LEI ANUENUE - Sam Septimo
A name song for the composer's daughter. It means Rainbow Lei.
1. E Leianuenue, (O Leianuenue)
Ku'u pua makamae (My precious child)
Me 'oe mau ke aloha (Love is always with you)
I na kau a kau. (Forever and ever.)
2.He makana onaona (A sweet gift)
Mai ka lani ki'eki'e (From the high heaven)
I hoapili mau na'u (To be close companion always to me)
E hau'oli mau ai. (And always make me happy.)
3.Nanea au i ka lohe (I enjoy listening)
I ka nahe o ko leo (To the sweetness of your voice)
Ka hene o ko 'aka (The merriment of your laughter)
I piha me ka 'oli'oli. (That fills me with happiness.)
4. Ho'opili mai ho'i au (I'll always keep close)
Ma nei poli aloha (To this loving heart)
He lei ha'aheo na'u (A child for me to cherish with pride)
E milimili mau ai. (To caress always.)
5. E o mai i ko inoa (Answer to your name)
E Leianuenue (O Leianuenue)
Ku'u kama, ku'u lei, (My child, my darling)
Me 'oe mau ke aloha (Love is always with you.)
KAU'IKEAOULI - Traditional
A name song for Kamehameha III. In other days, the singer listened to ka wai, the stream; today na manu, the birds.
Lei aku au i ke ala (I am wreathed in fragrance)
Ke ala o ka 'awapuhi (The fragrance of the ginger)
Onaona wale ho'i ia uka (Sweet indeed in the uplands)
I ka uka 'iu'iu a'o Nu'uanu (In the far uplands of Muuanu.)
Noho aku au ho'olono (I sit and listen to)
Ka hoene mai a na manu (The soft sound of the birds)
Ke ala onaona o ka 'awapuhi (The sweet fragrance of the singer)
Kau'ikeao-lani he inoa (Royal Kavikeao, a song to honor the name.)
NA WAI KAULANA - Alice I. Namakelua
Composed in the middle 40's for the Maui float in the Kamehameha Day parade, this song praises the four famous streams of west Maui and other well-known features of that island. The streams are Wai-ka-pu (water of the conch); Wai-luku (water of destruction: site of a decisive 18th century battle between rival chiefs); Wai-ehu (foaming water); Wai-he's (slippery water: because of algae). At Kepaniwai (the water dam), a park in lao Valley, Wailuku Stream was dammed with bodies after a battle. And the Kula (plains) district is on the slopes of Haleakala mountain.
Ka'apuni 'Oe a puni o Maui (You tour around Maui)
E 'ike e na wai eha (And see the four streams)
'O Waikapu, 'o Wailuku, 'o Waiehu (Waikapu, Wailuku, Waiehu.)
Kaulana na wai eha (Famous are the four streams)
He 'inikiniki malie (And nipped gently is)
'O Waihe'e i ka makani Kili'o'opu. (Waihee by the wind [named] Kilioopu)
Na wai kaulana ia a'o ku'u 'aina. (These are the famous streams of my land.)
'Ike ana i ka nani o Maui (Seeing the beauty of Maui)
I Kepaniwai o 'lao (Kepaniwai at lao)
Ke kokoio a ka uwahi o Kula (The drifting of the dust of Kula)
Mehe uhiwai ala no ka uka. (Like fog there in the uplands.)
IT WOULDN'T BE THE SAME WITHOUT YOU - M. Wilson
KU'U HOA - Pono Beamer
1. He aloha ku'u ipo (Love to my sweetheart)
Ku'u hoa maka onaona noho i ke kuahiwi (My gentle-eyed companion living in the mountains.)
2.E ho'i mai no kaua (Let's return, we two)
Me a'u pili ku'u 'i'ini a ka pu'uwai. (It's my heart's desire.)
3.O ka pa konane (The shining)
A ka mahina la ahuwale no ka pae 'opua (Of the moon reveals the cloud-bank.)
4. Ha'ina ka puana (The story is told of)
Ku'u hoa maka onaona noho i ke kuahiwi (My gentle-eyed companion living in the mountains.)
I DON'T SEE ME IN YOUR EYES ANYMORE - B. Benjamin, G. Weiss
THE COVER DESIGN: a favorite pattern for a Hawaiin quilt: Pua Kukui...candlehut flower...the flower of the island of Molokai, where Tony Lindsey was born and raised.
PRODUCER: Don McDiarmid, Jr.
ENGINEER: Ken Hiller
LINER NOTES: Jean Sullivan
COVER DESIGN: Nieman Advertising
RECORDED IN HAWAII AT COMMERCIAL RECORDING STUDIOS FOR HULA RECORDS, INC., P.O. BOX 2135, HONOLULU, HAWAII 96805
PLEASE DON'T EVER THINK OF ME
OUT IN THE COLD AGAIN
KU'U LEI ANUENUE
I came across this record on a few blogs and managed to track down some audio from WFMU's site. I would love to hear more from this honky-tonkin' caterwaulin' queen. Listen to the tracks below and I think you will too!