How to Make Hawaiian Musical Instruments

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Hawaii has a rich musical heritage that is carried on in the rhythmic beat if the ipu and resonant pounding of pahu drums at hula performances throughout the islands.

While many of the musical instruments that accompany hula today can be traced back to early Polynesian roots, others - including the ipu heke (gourd drum), ipu hiokiokio (gourd nose flute) and the uliuli rattle - are considered to be uniquely Hawaiian.

In the past, the only written information available on making Hawaiian musical instruments lay in the dusty notes of the early anthropologists. Now, for the first time, the manufacturing processes of eighteen traditional Hawaiian musical instruments are documented with carefully researched instructions, step-by-step photographs in an easy-to-follow craft guide.