Sunday, February 10, 2008

Hawaiian Quintet PPIE Instruments

Nina C asks:
"I'd like to know what all the instruments were in the picture, particularly the instrument on the left front. It looks kind of like a tenor scale ukulele, is it a parlor guitar or some other instrument?"

I trust our readers will be able answer this in about 10 seconds. If you know, please leave a comment by clicking on the "comment" link below.

By the way, the leader of this quintet is Henry Kailimai, who penned "On the Beach at Waikiki." Henry Ford caught the quintet's gig at the Hawaiian Pavillion and liked them so much that after the PPIE he hired them to be the Ford Motor Company's house Hawaiian band. They recorded under the name of The Ford Hawaiians.


John said...

My guess would be that there are three guitars, an ukulele in the back left and the front center looks to be a mandolin. It's hard to tell given the resolution of the picture, but looking at the headstock size the guitars are all 6 strings, may be parlor sized. The front center looks very much like my bowl back mandolin.

Hope this helps.

-John Moen

Nina Coquina said...

The guitars on the front and rear right look to be normal sized. The one on the front left is smaller, which is why I asked if it might be something other than a parlor guitar. I agree that the middle seems to be a mandolin and the back left a ukulele.

I was thinking John King might know what these were.

Gary said...

Michael Simmons should know, too. Michael, you out there?

ukulele said...

It's a typically-sized guitar of the period. The high-resolution image that I scanned at the Hawaii State Archives leaves no doubt. JK

patsy said...

Seems like a smallish guitar, front-left, perhaps a parlor-style instrument, although I can only detect 4 pegs, which makes me think it could be a tenor guitar (would need to see a higher-res picture). The other two are likely regular guitars, and there's that uke in the back. The middle instrument looks a bit big for a mandolin...mandola, maybe?

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