“You look so cute!” commented a program participant upon seeing my square dancing outfit, cowboy hat, and cowboy boots in keeping with the program’s western theme.
Thirty people signed up for my monthly “Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Paniolo Songs” on Thursday, February 20, 2020 at Kaunoa Senior Center for adults 55 and better on Maui.
During the “Hawaiian History Moment of the Month” we talked about Ikua Pudy, the Native Hawaiian who stunned the American West at the World Championship finals in Wyoming by winning the steer-roping contest in 1908. An enormous bronze statue of Ikua Pudy roping a steer was pulled into the Parker Ranch Shopping Center in Waimea on the Big Island of Hawaii on February 23, 2003. Thus in Purdy’s honor we selected paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy), country and western songs for the theme for February’s sing-along program.
We continued the Sing-Along with Mitch Miller format of projecting the song lyrics and ‘ukulele chords on a screen at the front of the room for singers and ‘ukulele players to see. My husband wore his palaka (Hawaiian cowboy) shirt and accompanied us on his u-bass. We sang each song twice and one participant jumped up to dance hula to Ulupalakua, a Hawaiian song about an upcountry ranch on Maui.
We sang the following songs during the 70-minute program:
- Paniolo Country
- I’m An Old Cowhand
- Could I Have This Dance
- Hey Good Lookin’
- Home On The Range
- Ring of Fire
- King of the Road
- Red River Valley
- Take Me Home Country Roads
- Hawaii Aloha
You can listen to audio recordings of some of the songs we played and more on my website at https://ukulelemeleonmaui.com/meles-music/. You can also watch videos of some of our sing-along programs and more on my YouTube Channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/melefong/
The next Sing-Along with Mele Fong Series – Folk Songs of the 1950s & 1960s will be on Thursday, March 5 at Kaunoa Senior Center.
Aloha, Mele Fong aka Ukulele Mele