Music

Musical implements include drums of carved wood and lashed animal hides, flutes, percussive instruments, rattles, bullroarers, and plucked stringed instruments. Such instruments would accompany voiced chants and dance.


thumb `Ohe hano ihu - were used principally to serenade lovers. The sound is produced by closing one nostril with the thumb and blowing air through the other nostril across the hole closest to the node. Covering the sound stops with the fingers makes a variety of soft, melodious sounds, which in ancient times represented love chants and calls of birds. Today the `ohe hano ihu is also used by musicians to impart a unique, haunting sound to their compositions.

Material: Hawaiian bamboo
Size: Varies


thumb Hokiokio - were used by lovers to communicate with or to entertain each other. As with the `ohe hano ihu, air was blown through the nose hole (any hole that is comfortable) with one nostril. Covering the stop holes with the fingers produced different melodius tones.

Material: Gourd
Size: Approximately 3-6 inches high


thumb Puniu - are used by hula dancers and chanters to keep rhythm. This drum is tied to the leg just above the knee and beaten with a braided cord.

Material: Coconut with natural fibers, kala or raw hide drum head
Size: Varies


thumb `Uli`uli - used as a hula implement before decorative feathers were attached.

Material: Coconut or la`amia and lauhala with ali`ipoe
Size: Varies


thumb Kupe'e - One of the most distinctive dance ornaments from ancient Hawai'i is the kupe'e niho 'ilio, the dog-tooth leg ornament. Not only visually striking, the overlapping teeth also make a distinctive percussive sound during vigorous stamping leg movements, so the kupe'e is very effectively used during hula ku'i (a form with vigorous leg kicks and stamps, made famous on Moloka'i). The kupe'e, depending on size, may use from hundreds of teeth to upwards of a thousand teeth per side! drilled dog teeth are strung, and then intricately laced into a network that, over the course of making, takes on a trapezoidal form. The network is flexible yet strong, and is framed by a framework for lacing onto the dancer's leg, below the knee. There are few modern kupe'e niho ilio in existence, and only a handful of people in the world have resurrected the lacing methods from ancient times.

Material: dog canine teeth
Size: varies