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Getting Started
(C6th Hawaiian Tabs)

Hawaiian Steel Guitar

Click HERE to hear me play Moon of Manakoora (download) recorded on the D9th lap steel tuning, which is nothing more than dropping the 4th string on your C6th from a G note to an F#. So the tuning from high (string 1) to low is: E, C, A, F#, E, C). I used the same 1936 Bakelite Rickenbacher pictured to the right. Rick Aiello kindly rewound the pickup's for me with 38-guage wire and rejuiced the magnets. Nice!

Here are my D9th tabs for the beautiful Hawaiian song, Moon of Manakoora.

Here's a decent lap steel at an affordable price (I've had good experience with Guitar Center simply because they offer FREE shipping). My preference is to buy a used classic from The Golden Years of music and pre-WWII. Albeit, please don't get me wrong, the tone of a long-scale 24 1/2" Jerry Byrd Frypan is MUCH better, but you'll pay 8 times more! Compare the sounds for yourself and you'll hear why the Byrd Frypan costs so much more...

Jersey Lightning
Byrd Frypan

A Great Run From Jeff Au Hoy

Used Lap Steels

You don't know what you're missing out on without a lap steel in your life! Many come with old-timey amps too. Hawaiian steel guitar is real music! Bali Hai

Elderly Instruments

 C6th Chords

Billy Hew Len
 (Cool: plays with a missing left hand!)

The Lap Steel Guitar

Beautiful Kahana
(by Jerry Byrd | Tabs for 'Beautiful Kahana'

My Steel Videos

Helpful Advice For Steel Guitarists

Uptown, Downtown
(album & backing tracks, by Tommy Roots)

One of my favorite artists...
Bobby Ingano
(playing 'E Aloha No Honolulu')

Tom Morrell & The Time Warp Top Hands
(live jamboree 1984; Download MP3)

What A Friend In Jesus | Track

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The Song That Inspired Me To Learn Pedal Steel Guitar

Lessons Available by Alan Akaka
(Good stuff!)

Download Any Entire Website
(free open source 'CYOTEK')

Buddy Charleton - ISGC 2001
(I edited the song for steel guitar only version)

David J. Stewart playing a 6-string 1936 Rickenbacher steel guitar.

I am a grateful born-again Christian.
Music makes the world a better place!

Below is one of the most sought after lapsteel guitars in the world. The 1 1/2" horseshoe pickup identifies it as pre WWII. 7-strings were more rare than the 6-strings. Through-the-body strings are much preferred as they produce a nicer tone than strings attached to a flange at the bridge. Brass Dunlop finger picks are my favorite!

Prewar Rickenbacher, 7-string, 1 1/2" horseshoe pickup, through-the-body-strings ... NICE!

As strange as it may sound, steel guitar is associated with Hawaiian music everywhere except in Hawaii. Anywhere in the world, when people think about Hawaiian music, they think about the steel guitar. But in Hawaii, the ukulele is the official State instrument.

There is still much anger and resentment amongst Hawaiians against the United States for stealing their land and turning all their beautiful beaches into hotel developments. Now there's talk of building a train system in Honolulu, which would be good to reduce traffic, but it is ruining paradise. Many of the themes in Hawaii's music centers around the destroying of their homeland.

Albeit, if you ever visit Oahu, you will see many rainbows, as it rains often because of the high mountains. Oahu is overrated if you ask me. If you drive up and down Beretania and North King Streets, you'll see hundreds of homeless people living on the streets. So much for paradise.

Jerry Byrd's Wealth Of Knowledge

Jerry Byrd Instruction

Psalms 150:4, “Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.”

Search this website    

Listen 2 Hawaiian Radio...

The steel guitar is an awesome instrument that's a legendary part of American history. In the 1930s thru 1950s, everyone wanted to learn to play lap steel guitar. It is a different story today, but that makes it even more rewarding to play steel as a rare novelty that few people can do. Guitar and bass players are dime-a-dozen, but steel players are rare indeed.

My name is David J. Stewart. I've been playing steel guitar since 1992. I want you to learn to play Hawaiian steel guitar. That is my desire. I don't want your money and have nothing to sell. I link to some websites that do sell things, but only because I want you to know all that's available to learn the steel guitar. My website is packed full of instruction and helps to get you started. God gave me the gift of music, and I want to share it with others freely. My most recent steel recordings.

There's tons of tablature already available for the pedal steel E9th and C6th tunings; but hardly anything for us non-peddlers, so I decided to publish this website to help those who want to learn the beautiful lap steel. Although I use B11th, D9th, and the Bill Leavitt tuning , most of what I play is C6th, which offers the most chord possibilities. 

Lloyd Green Page
("Summer Clouds" by Lloyd from 1974)

Of course, if you play E9th pedal steel, you can just drop your 4th and 8th string (E notes) down to Eb and you have a C6th on the 1st fret. Strings 10, 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4 are respectively: C, E, G, A, C, E. Just avoid the 9th string. You can't beat playing C6th on an old Sho-Bud! That's in fact exactly what Jerry Byrd played... a Sho-Bud D-8 guitar with no pedals.

Amazing C6th Pedal Steel

And if you play C6th on the pedal steel , you have an extended C6th tuning to play everything on my website. So whether you play E9th pedal steel or C6th pedal steel or C6th non-pedal steel, this website will offer many helpful things.

C6th Tabs | C6th Scales

Chord Locator | Rhythm Tracks

Hear me play...
Rainbows Over Paradise
*Download| Track | Tabs

Awesome 3-Hour Hawaiian Jam
(Bobby Ingano, Jeff Au Hoy, Alan Akaka and inspiring musical student artists)

C6th Hawaiian Tabs

“There is only one thing that separates the great players from the not so great, and then the non-players. It is simple: the great ones have been at it for as long as they can remember, and the thought of quitting was not an option. The urge to throw in the towel can be overwhelming. They never learned anything any easier than you can. They never learned anything more quickly than you can. They never had an angel of God visit them in the middle of the night giving them special instructions on how to play.” —in loving memory of my friend Jeff Newman (1942-2004)

Here's some great background music for around the house—the song 'Paradise'
(This is just one of those songs that sounds great being played over and over.)

The steel guitar is a great instrument for disabled people (with either missing fingers/hand to learn). The reason is because with a few adaptations and a determined spirit, anyone can play the steel guitar. Some of the most beautiful playing is just playing in single note style. Here's another single note style instrumental: His Name Is Wonderful.


You don't need an expensive recording studio with all the bells and whistles. Here's a recording I made , playing the pedal steel E9th, using just a small handheld ICD PX720 recorder (there are many similar nice recorders, like the PX312). A digital recording studio, like the Boss BR-600 is great, but you can record with much less, like I did here. My favorite means of recording is with desktop software, using MixCraft.

Here's another one, Harbor Lights , played on a S-6 long scale Frypan using the C6th tuning.

Watch me play Sweetnin' in A6th (treble to bass: E - C# - A - F# - E - C# - A - F# ), same as C6th, just 1 1 /2 tones lower in pitch. The high E is the same as a high G on C6th. Here's the track I used (more tracks available HERE. Here's some tabs for 'Sweetnin.'

Here's 2 favorites Hawaiian songs, Mapuana and Hana , which I recorded playing a $99 Artisan (same as Rogue) lap steel tuned to B11th. They are junk as far as quality, but they do carry a note. Check out this nice Supro Jet Airline reissue from the 1960's. You get what you pay for, so don't expect the same superb tone from a cheap steel guitar, but I highly recommend the Supro Airline for newer players, before you invest thousands in an expensive high quality lap steel like Canopus.

Here's My Yellow Ginger Lei . I backed-up the singer using a 1936 S-6 Rickenbacher Bakelite, C6th. Rickenbachers are worth every penny for their great warm tone (both pre and post war bakelite model guitars. The Silver Hawaiian sounds metallic and hollow to me).

E Mama E | E Mama E Tabs and Rhythm Track for E9th lap steel. Here's Song of the Islands which I played live at a public gathering. Here's Paper Roses that I played on the E9th pedal steel. And here's several more E9th songs from my heart. You may freely share them:

The best way to learn to play Hawaiian steel guitar is to LISTEN to lots of Hawaiian steel guitar, to become well acquainted with the instrument and what it can do.

Get out your steel guitar and try to play along with some of these songs (files are 24 kbps mono). The C6th tuning is best, I think, but many different tunings were used by these various steel guitarists.

I love the intro which Barney Isaacs Jr. (1924-1996) does on Beyond the Reef, which is played during every commercial break in Honolulu on You can hear what an 8-string can do, giving you some great low notes to rake across. I tabbed out the intro for you, which is really awesome.

Check out what you can do with bar slants on an extended C6th.

Buddy Merrill
(Check this kid out. He plays a quadruple neck Fender, doing some great tone swells and bar techniques)

Recording King Lap Steel

My 2020 Steel Recordings

Sebastian Muller - Old Tunings
(great backing tracks & tabs available)

Lap Steel Stands

Sol Hoopii Gospel | Part 2

*If this webpage appears off the screen on your computer, adjust the size by rotating the mouse wheel while holding down the CTRL key. It's a challenge to build my website to work in all browsers.

Streaming M3U Audio
(how to hear the .m3u files on this website)

Making Recordings

Learning Timing

My Letter from Jerry Byrd 1993
My Letter from Jerry Byrd 1999
My Signed Aloha Card from 1993

 Jerry Byrd Classics

Dave Hum - I Love This Guy!
(I love this beautiful man! He's the world's greatest banjo artist!)

Buy Original Dave Hum Backing Tracks And Tabs
(to help support Dave's family)

Banjo Heaven
(my banjo blog with dozens of free backing tracts I've made)

Jerry Byrd Live Honolulu Concert 1985
(Jerry and his trio at the Halekaulani hotel in Waikiki)

Hawaiian music is not about a place; but rather, making the best of life wherever you're at. No one appreciates Hawaiian steel guitar more than people living up in frigid Canada and Europe. Music comes from the heart. To me, Hawaiian music is about Heaven, and all the blessings awaiting every born-again Christian, somewhere far beyond the sun. 'Tis one life will soon be past, only what's done for Christ will last.

(It's just a regular guitar tuned differently.)

Learn 12-string Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar
(by George Kahumoku Jr. | DVD & Book)

A Really Nice Slack Key Course | CD
(by Mark Nelson)

How To Play Slack Key Guitar
(really cool stuff — G Taro, Drop C, F Wahini)

My Ukulele Recordings from 2015:
(I used a $200 electric Oscar-Schmidt ukulele, handcrafted in Indonesia. I overdubbed two ukuleles and recorded it using MixCraft. All standard tuning.)
(An awesome website for ukulele fans!)


There is a sweet tonal spot on certain lap steel pickups, such as Rickenbacher horseshoes and Excel Frypans. Turn your tone control knob all the way muddy, and then come back just a little bit. DON'T turn the knob all the way bright. If it's set right, your steel will sound somewhat like a horn in a brass band, which is a highly desired sound for Hawaiian steel.

Also, don't listen to the bogus hype that because Excel Frypans only use cosmetic horseshoes that they don't sound as good as horseshoe pickups. Not so! The stock pickups are awesome and equal any Rickenbacher!

All the talent in the world means nothing if you have not desire. Success is 90% perspiration, and 10% inspiration. You can do it!

My Hawaiian Album 2001

Kalalau Valley on Kauai, Hawaii

Waikiki Islanders

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Click Here for bigger chart below

There are literally hundreds of M3U songs on this page for you to listen to. I cannot provide download links for most of the music, but you can listen to beautiful steel guitar, which is in my opinion the most wonderful music in the universe. It reminds me of Heaven!

All my personal recordings are downloadable and many of the rhythm tracks! You're welcome to freely use them as you wish. Also, check out my videos!

I have compiled many of these songs into a Hawaiian playlist (122 so far) if you just want to hear these songs as background music while relaxing or working around the home. Enjoy!

Hawaiian music is like any other genre, you have the good and the bad. As a Christian I try to only promote that which is good, modest, decent, and pleasing to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Playing Harmonics

Barney Isaacs Jr. - Moon Of The Southern Sea

Alan Akaka Lessons (tabs & tracks)


Learn "Adventures In Paradise" On
Jerry Byrd's Amazing "C Diatonic Tuning"!

Hawaiian MIDI Files
(great for importing song chords into BIAB)

Greg Cutshaw
(295 free tabs & audio; Greg has generously made and shared these AWESOME backing tracks; Greg has backing tracks for Harbor Lights, Georgia Steel Guitar, Song Of The Islands and Many more songs.)

Frypan Medley
(Here's an example of Greg's playing & rhythm tracks. You can download the tracks HERE. Don't miss all 24 PAGES! Here's page 1.)

Learn 'Texas Playboy Rag' on C6th
(tabs, song and backing track)

Honolulu Eyes
(tabbed as recorded in 1959 by Jerry Byrd
using his amazing C Diatonic tuning!)

Beyond The Reef in D | Key Of F
Maui Steel Guitar Festival 2018 - Troy Brenningmeyer, Bobby Ingano, Greg Sardinha and Addison Ching!

Jerry Byrd 1978 Hawaiian Jam!

It Was A Trip, On Wings Of Music
(an autobiography by Jerry Byrd)

I added a 1953 bakelite Rickenbacher S-6 to the song, “God Understands.” Here's how to play Bud Tutmarc's “P-Tah” that he's famous for. I use a slightly different tuning than Bud (high to low: E, C#, G#, E, Bb, F#). I used an E9th pedal steel for the ending parts. Here's the original song, so you can play along. Enjoy!


One of the most beautiful aspects of steel guitar playing, whether it be Hawaiian, Gospel or Country music is using bar vibrato, i.e., slightly moving the bar back-n-forth on the fret to produce a wavering sound, which pulls on the heart of the listener!

“When one is as good as they want to be, that's as good as they're going to get.” —Jerry Byrd (p. 109, “It Was A Trip On Wings Of Music”)

Also, learn to pause on a single note while playing. If you get the timing right, it is beautiful.

Alfred Apaka Lyrics & Chords


I like the Dunlop brand steel bars because the end facing the player is receded, which allows your thumb a place to easily do reverse slants. It really helps! I prefer the longer 3/4" by 2 7/8" bar.

I use my larger pedal steel bar on my long-scale Frypan, but I have to be careful not to slip while doing reverse bar slants.

*Jerry Byrd Biography
*Jerry Byrd Steel Instruction

Stardust On C6th Pedal

STARDUST is my favorite C6th song on pedal steel, performed by Tommy Roots. I met Tommy at the ISGC in 1995-1996, and he was a great personality, apt to teach and a nice guy. Here's a nice rhythm track and even better, Tommy explains in this MP3 session HOW TO PLAY Stardust!

Here also, Tommy Root explains in this MP3 HOW TO PLAY “Shadow Of Your Smile.” The song was originally recorded by Tommy as a solo, so there was never a rhythm track. It is a beautiful song!

John W. Peterson (on steel guitar) - Twilight Melodies

Kalalau Valley on Kauai, Hawaii

Lani McIntire and His Orchestra -
 Song of Hawaii

Addeo - More Hawaii in Hi-Fi

Super Jam 1996

*Hal Rugg, Paul Franklin Jr., Tommy White, Jeff Newman - I had the privilege of recording these artists live in St. Louis...

Above: I only got a partial recording on Crazy, but it's some great pedal steel guitar.

Tablature of a great solo run by Jerry Byrd, for the song “HAOLE HULA.”

Goodbye Hawaii | Song 2

Mike Neer has some great advanced tabs and top quality backing tracks for Coconut Grove (A7th), Sweetnin' (A6th - Mike tabs it exactly like the original song) and other cool songs. The A7th tuning (high to low: E, C#, A, F#, E, C#, Bb, G) provides some awesome chord expansion for C6th fans. Herb Remington's A6th (high to low: E, C#, A, F#, E, C#, A, A bass) is really cool. The A6th is simply a C6th with a high G lowered 3 half tones. You've got to try these tunings!

Jeffran College
(instruction for C6th & E9th steel guitar)

Learn Great E9th Hal Rugg Chops

Hawaiian Jukebox

Lloyd Green Tuning Seminar (MP3, 21:54 minutes long, Texas Steel Show, October 1992)

I began playing pedal steel guitar in 1992 and didn't truly learn how to tune until decades later. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of learning to tune BY EAR. Lloyd explains how in the preceding awesome seminar. Use the tuner, but then fine-tune by the SOUND YOU HEAR. When you hear the “crisp bite” in the major chord, you're where you want to be! WHAT A DIFFERENCE TUNING BY EAR MAKES!

Psalms 144:9, “I will sing a new song unto thee, O God: upon a psaltery and an instrument of ten strings will I sing praises unto thee.”

“I never quit thinking about the instrument; I never quit trying to strive for new ideas. I felt like it was important to keep forging ahead. If I stopped, there would be no reason to keep continue playing. It’s an endless adventure playing the steel guitar; you’re only limited by your imagination. As long as you got a good brain, you can think and play anything on the instrument. It’s an endless journey.” Lloyd Green, interview 2001, 'Steel Guitar Rag' magazine

Various Artists -
All the Best of Hawaii
1. Blue Hawaii
2. Hawaiian Wedding Song
3. Lovely Hula Hands
4. Pearly Shells
5. Aloha Oe
6. Kaimana Hila
7. Hawaiian Tattoo
8. Polynesian Love Song
9. Isa Lei

Toia Mai

11. Papia-Tahiti Nui
12. Farewell For Just A While
13. Pania Of The Reef
14. Pokarekare Ana
15. Under The Sun
16. When My Wahini Does The Poi
17. Cheryl Moana Marie
18. Haere Mai
19. Now Is The Hour
20. Tofa Felengi

Bud Tutmarc Plays Mapuana

“During the years 1935 to 1940, steel guitar was king.”
—Jerry Byrd, “It Was A Trip On Wings Of Music,” by Jerry Byrd (1920-2005); 2003, p. 117


Poss Miyazaki - Hawaiian Exotic
1. Ta-Huwahuwai
2. Sweet Leilani
3. Love Song Of Kalua
4. Little Grass Shack
5. Hilawe
6. Moon Of Manakoora
7. Blue Hawaii
8. Malihini Mele
9. Hawaiian Wedding Song
10. Mama Iti E Papa E
11. Beyond The Reef
12. Aloha Oe

All The Best Of Hawaii

1. Blue Hawaii
2. Hawaiian Wedding Song
3. Lovely Hula Hands
4. Pearly Shells
5. Aloha Oe
6. Kaimana Hila
7. Hawaiian Tattoo
8. Polynesian Love Song
9. Isa Lei

Toia Mai

11. Papia-Tahiti Nui
12. Farewell For Just A While
13. Pania Of The Reef
14. Pokarekare Ana
15. Under The Sun
16. When My Wahini Does The Poi
17. Cheryl Moana Marie
18. Haere Mai
19. Now Is The Hour
20. Tofa Felengi

Playing Single Note Style

Steel Guitar Forum
(Bob Lee's Copedents)

Twin Steel Guitars -
Kayton Roberts
& Little Roy Wiggins

1. Twin Steel Boogie
2. Take Your Pick
3. Georgia Steel Guitar
4. Kentucky Waltz
5. Through The Night
6. Near The Cross
7. Boot Heel Drag
8. Aloha
9. Love Theme
10. Kayton's Waltz
11. Maiden's Prayer


Hawaiian Beach Boys - Bali Hai (1973)

1. Hawaii Sang Me To Sleep
2. Flower Lei
3. Song Of Old Hawaii
4. Bali Hai
5. Moana Chimes
6. Pretty Red Hibiscus
7. Sweet Gardenia Lei
8. It Happened In Koloha
9. King Kamehameha
10. Pidgin English Hula
11. Lovely Hula Hands
12. Aloha Beloved

“Steel guitar is a Hawaiian instrument by birth and what I consider to be the signature sound of Hawaiian music. Having undergone many changes, both physically and musically, in the hundred-plus years of its existence, it is, I will say without hesitation, one of the most difficult instruments to master.” —Jerry Byrd, “It Was A Trip On Wings Of Music,” by Jerry Byrd (1920-2005); 2003, p. 110

About Guitar Strings

There are 3 types of guitar strings: wound, semi-flat, or round-wound (flat). The higher string gauges are all plain. Only the lower strings are wound. I used to use semi-flat wound because they are brighter and more responsive than flats; but flats are the most comfortable on the left hand while sliding and they're quiet. For the past few years I have just used standard guitar strings because they are easy to find and have better harmonics than flats or semi-flats in my opinion.

WEAR A LEI (B11th tabs)

Jerry Byrd Instruction Course
(comes with rhythm tracks and tabs)

Who Plays Steel on 'SPONGE BOB'?
(Answer: Gary Brandin)

If you have multi-track recording studio software like MixCraft (which is a program for less than $100), then you can input any rhythm track onto one track, and then add some authentic ocean waves on another track from Hawaii (that I recorded while on the island of Kauai). Here's another recording of waves. Waves really enhance your backing tracks while playing for a crowd. Listen to Blue Hawaii that I made with waves. While visiting in 2011, I recorded these wave sounds at 11 p.m. in Kauai. MixCraft also allows you to slow down songs to learn tough guitar parts.

Ukulele Chords For Hawaiian Songs

Hundreds Of Hawaiian Ukulele Songs

Ukulele Chord Chart (.pdf)

Ukulele Transposing Chart (.pdf)

Tunings Of The Pros

Every student of the steel guitar should start learning without any guitar effects. To the degree that effects are used, the player is drowned out. Check out Bud Isaacs.

Note: The above CD also includes background play-along tracks for all 10 songs (listed here).

(the highest quality steel guitars... you get what you pay for! You can't go wrong with a Canopus!)

The B11th Tuning

Tear Drop (by Doug Beaumier)

Cool Capo/Slide Converter
(instantly turn any guitar into a lap steel)

Videos by Jerry Byrd
*Sand (by Jerry Byrd | B11th Tabs)

Volume pedals are essential to proper lap steel technique. You'll miss so very much without a volume pedal. Using the volume control knob or floor pedal, raise the volume while going into a note, and then to back-off after playing the note. This is for seamless chord changes, volume swell effects and personal expression. Here's Jerry Byrd's opinion on volume pedals (MP3).

Getting Started

String Gauges

Scotty's Music

Leonard T. Zinn (1924-2022)
Indy Gospel Show - Leonard Zinn - 1994

An Interesting New Tuning?

Jerry Byrd's 'C Diatonic' Tuning

Come A Little Closer
(tabbed in C diatonic tuning as recorded by Jerry in 1958)

Jerry Byrd YouTube Channel Check out Jerry Byrd's Diatonic tuning, which he used in 1960 to record the solo on " Next To Jimmy" by Ferlin Husky.

Hilo Hawaiians - Honeymoon in Hawaii

King Keoni And His Islanders -
This Is Hawaii

Here's me playing "His Name is Wonderful" on a Long scale S-6 Jerry Byrd Frypan.

Gospel Split track RT/CDs are available. I use "MixCraft" to split and slow the tracks. This lets you make rhythm tracks. Nice!

'TRAVELER' Lap Steel Project

Watch video

Sweet Leilani on a Fender 1000 Pedal Steel by Basil Henriques
[Basil Henriques, 1963 Fender 1000 Twin 8 steel guitar. Pat Henriques, Rhythm Guitar (Hofner Golden). Clive Morton, Acoustic Bass. Recorded 1967 and available on " Live at The Castaways" Volume 1. Volume 2]

Luke Leilani &His Royal Hawaiians - Hawaiian Paradise

Kana King & His Hawaiians - The music of Hawaii

All Star Hawaiian Band - Steel Guitar Magic - Hawaii's Golden 16

Webley Edwards - Hawaii Calls Show

The Surfmen -
Colorful Romantic Hawaii

Lani McIntire and His Aloha Islanders - Hawaiian Melodies

9. Paradise Isle
10. Beautiful Kahana
11. Hilo March
12. Mai Poina Oe La'u
13. Maori Brown Eyes
14. Drowsy Waters
15. Dreams of Old Hawaii
16. Hawaiian Sunset

Micky Curtis and His City Crows - On The Beach (1966)

1. Beyond The Reef
2. Stranger On The Shore
3. La Mer
4. The Moon Of Manakoora
5. Moonlight Swim
6. Harbor Lights
7. Love Song From "Mutiny On The Bounty"
8. Nakapueo-ke Ke Aloha Mekanani Au Kaupo

Peter Posa -
Beat of Polynesia (1965)

1. My Little Grass Shack
2. Maui Chimes
3. Blue Hawaii
4. Hawaiian War Chant
5. Polynesian Love Song
6. Ukulele Lady
7. Chulu Chululu
8. Hawaiian Wedding Song
9. Lovely Hula Hands
10. Moon Of Manakoora
11. In The Royal Hawaiian Hotel
12. Beyond The Reef

Marty Robbins, Jerry Byrd & Various

1. Down Where the Trade Winds Blow (1957)
2. Beyond the Reef (a great steel intro)
3. Blue Hawaii
4. My Little Grass Shack
5. I Hear Hawaii Calling
6. To You Sweetheart Aloha
7. Song Of The Island
8. Moon Of Manakoora
9. Pearly Shells
10. Sweet Leilani
11. Sleepy Lagoon
12. The Magic Islands
13. Aloha Oe

Living Strings -
Hawaiian Memories (1970)

1. To You, Sweetheart, Aloha
2. My Isle Of Golden Dreams
3. Beyond The Reef
4. Now Is The Hour
5. Hawaiian Memories
6. Tiny Bubbles
7. Aloha My Tani - Aloha Oe
8. My Little Grass Shack
9. Pearly Shells

Pete Drake's
Talking Steel Guitar

Barney & Jules - Hawaiian Shores

1. Paradise Isle
2. Beautiful Kahana
3. The Moon Of Manakoora
4. Hawaiian Shores
5. Mai Poina Oe Iau
6. Harbor Lights
7. Girl In The Yellow Holoku
8. Sand
9. Mauna Kea
10. Beyond The Reef

Alvino Rey (1959)

Barney Isaacs Jr.

1. Aloha Hui Ku'uipo
2. E Mau
3. Ho'o Mali Mali
4. Lei Momi
5. Moon of the Southern Seas
6. Nalani (written by his father)
7. Tahauala
8. The Lady in the Lauhala Hat

Some of the best steel guitar tones ever produced were on pre World War 2 amplifiers. Here's a unique website where you can find information, pictures, and even schematics of pre WW2 amps to build your own!!! Oahu | Volu-Tone

Lani McIntire - Hula Blues

Johnny Pineapple & his Orchestra - Hawaiian Holiday

Kalua Beach Boys -
South Sea Island Magic (1960's)

The Surfmen -
The Sounds Of Exotic Island

1. Quiet Village
2. Tahiti Sunrise
3. Bali Ha'i
4. Bamboo
5. Jungle Romance
6. Forbidden Island
7. Taboo
8. Moonlight In Paradise
9. Luau
10. Fire Goddess
11. Orchid Lagoon
12. Moon Over Manakoora

The Surfmen -
The Romantic Lure Of Hawaii

1. Lovely Hula Hands
2. Beyond The Reef
3. Orchid Lagoon
4. Hano Hano
5. Mahala Pua
6. Aloha Oe
7. Bali Hai
8. Hawaiian Wedding Song
9. Jungle Romance
10. Moon Of Manakoora
11. Polynesian Fever

Various Artists - Hawaii Compilation

1. Polynesians - Lullaby Of Birdland
2. Polynesians - Minoi Minoi
3. Polynesians - Vana Vana
4. Andy Iona And His Islanders - Maui Girl
5. Andy Iona And His Islanders - My Tane
6. Andy Iona And His Islanders - Tahu-Wahu-Wai

Moon Of Manakoora

Haleloke Kahauolopua - Hawaiian Blossoms (1951) - no album photo

1. Hawaiian War Chant
2. White Ginger Blossoms
3. Lei Aloha
4. Sweet Leilani
5. Yaaka Hula Hickey Dula
6. Kuu Ipo
7. Ke Kal Nei Au (Wedding Song)
8. Lovely Hula Hands

Santo & Johnny - Hawaii (1961)

1. Adventures in Paradise
2. Aloha
3. Blue Hawaii
4. Hawaiian War Chant
5. Hawaiian Wedding Song
6. Isle of Dreams
7. Now is the Hour
8. Pineapple Princess
9. Reflections
10. Sea Shells
11. Song of the Islands
12. Sweet Leilani

David Stewart -
Hawaiian Steel Guitar (2001)

1. Aloha Oe
2. Beyond the Reef
3. Hawaiian Wedding Song
4. How Great Thou Art
5. I'll Weave a Lei of Stars
6. In the Garden
7. Moon of Manakoora
8. Song of Old Hawaii
9. Song of the Islands
10. Sweet Leilani
11. To You Sweetheart, Aloha

Alfred Newman and Ken Darby - Ports of Paradise (1960)

1. Ports Of Paradise
2. The Enchanted Sea
3. Blue Tahitian Moon
4. Farewell For Just A Little While
5. Now Is The Hour
6. Isa Lei
7. Whispering Wind
8. My Little Grass Shack
9. Forever More
10. Madonna Of The Flowers
11. To You Sweetheart, Aloha

The Polynesians -
Hawaiian Wedding Song

1. Hawaiian Wedding Song
2. Hawaiian War Chant
3. Queen of My Heart
4. Lehua
5. Rose Lani
6. Where I Gave My Heart to You
7. My Yellow Ginger Lei
8. At The Barefoot Bar


(24 1/2" and 22")

A short-scale makes doing bar slants easier; but the long-scale has a sweeter tone. I prefer the long-scale (played with a pedal steel bar). Unless you are a die-hard 8-string player, 6-strings is best (the strings are spaced further apart). ALWAYS buy the stand and legs with the case, because the aluminum guitar gets heavy after a while. The case is the SAME exact size with or without the legs and stand. I didn't believe it until I saw it. The stand rests neatly under the guitar in the case.

Felix Mendelssohn & His Hawaiian Serenaders - Mamula Moon

1. Let Me Whisper I Love You
2. Hilo March
3. Samoan Farewell Song
4. Medley: Forget Me Not / My Honolulu Hula Girl / Weave A Lei
5. Rhythm Of The Islands
6. Goodbye Hawaii
7. Medley: Down On Ami Ami Ani Ani Isle / Little Brown Gal / On The Beach At Waikiki
8. Mamula Moon
9. Hawaiian War Chant
10. Twilight Blues
11. Sweet Gardenia Lei
12. Goodbye Blues
13. Carefree Waltz
14. Yaaka Hula Hichey Dula
15. Paradise Isle
16. To You Sweetheart Aloha
17. It Happened In Kaloha
18. Serenade To A Pagan Moon
19. Blue Bahamas
20. Moon Over Miami
21. Caravan
22. The Hula Blues
23. La Cucaracha
24. Twelfth Street Rag
25. Moon Of Manakoora
26. Limehouse Blues
27. Sing Me A Song Of The Islands

David Stewart and His Band-in-a-Box - MP3's from Videos I've Made

1. I Love You So Much it Hurts
2. I Can't Help It | 2nd | 3rd
3. Bars of Steel | 2nd Version
4. Farewell Party | 2nd | 3rd | 4th
5. Blue Spanish Eyes | 2nd | 3rd
6. Hana | 2nd | 3rd | 4th | 5th
7. His Name is Wonderful | 2 | 3
8. Beyond the Reef | 2nd | 3rd
9 Beautiful Kahana | 2nd
10 Bali Hai
11 Indian Love Call | 2nd
12 It is No Secret | 2nd | 3rd | 4th
13 Just a Closer Walk | 2 | 3 | 4
14 Lord I Hope This | 2nd | 3rd
15 Lovely Hula Hands | 2nd | 3rd
16 Midnight Silence
17 Mona Lisa | 2nd Version
18 Sweet Leilani | 2nd Version

Various Artists -
I Will See You in Hawaii

Frank Chacksfield and his Orchestra - Hawaii

Various - Vintage Hawaiian, Volume  5

Poly and His Hawaiian Ensemble - Hawaiian Sunset

Chick Floyd - Hula La

Alf Barrie - A Lei of Stars

1. A Lei Of Stars
2. Moonlight In Waikiki
3. For Ever And Ever
4. Evening In The Islands
5. The One Rose
6. South Sea Island Magic
7. That's The Hawaiian In Me
8. The Hands I Love
9. Sea And Sand
10. Soft Green Seas
11. Maui Girl
12. Serenade To Nalani

Andy Iona and His Islanders
 - Kuu Lei

1. Pua Mele O Hawaii
2. Kuu Lei
3. Makala Pua
4. Just For You and Me
5. Mahalo
6. It's Sleepy Time In Hawaii
7. It Happened In Honolulu
8. The Palms Of Oahu
9. That Night In Avalon
10. Golden Island Blues
11. My Rose Of Waikiki (version 2)
12. The Roses Will Remember
13. Along The Pineapple Trail
14. Aloha Lullaby
15. I Whisper Aloha To You
16. E-O (The Memory Of A Lullaby)
17. The Song Of Kauai
18. On A Heavenly Isle In Tahiti
19. Momi-Lu
20. When The Sun Sets In Samoa

Lani Royal with The Diamond Head Band - The Sound of Hawaii Percussive Pineapples

1. Harbor Lights
2. Hawaiian War Chant
3. The Hawaiian Wedding Song
4. Drifting And Dreaming
5. My Little Grass Shack In Kealakakua, Hawaii
6. Beyond The Reef
7. The Hukilau Song
8. Sweet Leilani
9. Beyond The Sea
10. Blue Hawaii
11. The Cockeyed Mayor Of Kaunakakai
12. Sail Along Silvery Moon

Webley Edwards -
Soft Hawaiian Guitars

1. Lovely Hula Girl
2. Lei Of Stars
3. Ebb Tide (Tahua)
4. Sweet Someone
5. Sleepy Lagoon
6. Kalena Kai
7. Heavenly Islands
8. My Tane
9. Hawaiian Rose
10. Adventures In Paradise
11. Trade Winds
12. Palisa

Hank Snow -
Snow in Hawaii (1967)

1. Hula Love
2. Beyond The Reef
3. On The Beach At Waikiki
4. Hawaiian Sunset
5. My Little Grass Shack
6. Trade Winds
7. Don't Sing Aloha When I Go
8. Blue For Old Hawaii
9. Hawaiian Cowboy
10. To You Sweetheart, Aloha
11. The Crying Steel Guitar Waltz
12. Oahu Rose

Rhythm of the Islands
(sounds like the C#m tuning)

Using Effects

One of the biggest mistakes newer players make is going overboard with the guitar effects. Since reverb is the most common effect on most amplifiers, it is easily overdone. Here's a recording I made of JUST A CLOSER WALK with NO REVERB at all. The more reverb that you use, that less individuality is expressed through your music. Lots of reverb will cover a player's mistakes, but that's not musicianship. The exception is in songs that sound dreamy with a lot of reverb, like MOON OF MANAKOORA. I usually set my amp's reverb between 3-5. I avoid effects processors. A Boss DD3 delay (or similar) is a necessity for pedal steel. For Hawaiian I NEVER use effects, just reverb. Delay is great for slack key guitar.

Farewell My Tane
(by Webley Edwards)

Lani Kai - Island Love Songs

1. An Island Love Song
2. Lei Aloha, Lei Makamae
3. Haunani Mine
4. Isa Lei
5. Frangipani Blossom
6. Crushed Flowers In My Lei
7. Seven Days In Waikiki
8. Kainoa
9. Moana
10. Adventures In Paradise
11. Ring Around The Moon
12. To Make You Love Me, Kuu Ipo

Jerry Byrd - Steel Guitar Favorites

Kilima Hawaiians - Greatest Hits (Rudi Wairata played steel guitar)

Bud Isaacs - The Swingin' Steel Guitar

Harry Owens Royal Hawaiian Orchestra - Hula Breeze

Alfred Apaka -
Hawaiian Favorites (1964)

1. Lovely Hula Hands
2. The Moon Of Manakoora
3. Gay Hawaiian Party
4. Sleepy Lagoon
5. Lovely Hula Girl
6. White Ginger Blossoms
7. Hapa Haole Hula Girl
8. I Will Remember You
9. Kalua
10. Beyond The Reef
11. Haunani
12. The Hukilau Song

Leo Addeo -
Paradise Regained (1961)

1. Ka Lu A
2. Lovely Hula Hands
3. A Song Of Old Hawaii
4. Keep Your Eyes On The Hands
5. Now Is The Hour
6. Adventures In Paradise
7. Every Little Moment
8. Trade Winds
9. Hello, Aloha How Are You
10. Beyond The Reef
11. No Other Love
12. I'll See You In Hawaii

Hello Vietnam
In 1965 Johnnie Wright (1914-2011) sang HELLO VIETNAM. The original recording only had an intro, so I added some E9th pedal steel to it.

Tiny and His Hawaiian Bubbles - Hawaiian Luau Party

1. Hukilau
2. Beyond The Reef
3. Koni Au
4. Hawaiian Wedding Song
5. Hano Hano
6. Ebb Tide
7. My Little Grass Shack
8. Little Brown Gal
9. Sweet Leilani
10. Pearly Shells
11. Tiny Bubbles
12. Beautiful Kahana