Episode 23 – Kilin Reece – Two Centuries of Hawaii’s Strings

Fascinating dive into history from our friend Kilin!

Kilin Reece and I worked together at Ko’olau Guitar & Ukulele many years ago. Previously he had worked at Santa Cruz Guitar Co. And after leaving Ko’olau he took over the warranty repair work and you can see Kilin’s website for his business KR Strings HERE.

Kilin is working on a book and display at Bishop museum on Hawaiian music and how it entwines with the evolution of stringed instruments and popular music. In this interview he touches on the first steel string guitars made by C.F. Martin for Hawaii in collaboration with Hawaiian musicians. Musicians like Mekia Kealakaʻi and the creation of the dreadnaught shape. The first Hawaiian stringed instrument, the “ukeke”, the role of the steel guitar, mandolin, violin and of course, ukulele.

Kilin is also a fantastic musician and a wonderful creator. He headed the new Octave Mandolin project for Pono. Here’s a look at a video we shot of him demonstrating that instrument.

When we have these in stock they will be at the Pono section of our website HERE.

Comments 3

    1. I play mandolin, guitar, and baritone ukelele. To say I am excited about the mandolin baritone and the 8 string baritone that I discovered on the site is a huge understatement! I vow to bring these instruments to the attention of others and found a way to acquire them personally. I have found the life saving power of this instrument, the ukelele, since the 1970s

  1. It’s amazing how these different instruments sound! I am hoping to own some in the future! haha

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