found: 1991.

We’re a few days away from our annual Groundhog Day shindig, and while I have to be careful about revealing too much about our activities, I can tell you I’ve spent a little time looking for old Hawaiian steel guitar music for the weekend.

I found a bunch of cool stuff last night, but that got me thinking about a song that I’ve tried unsuccessfully to find since the early 1990s. I had always been taken by one particular clip that appeared on MTV’s excellent Liquid Television series — the animated clip itself is a little dark, but the music, an old Hawaiian song with acoustic steel guitar playing underneath falsetto vocals, always blew me away.

I’d tried to find it before, but without knowledge of the name of the song or the  clip, my searches never went far. Last night, though, I was determined, going through a list of random Liquid Television clips on YouTube.

On the third page of the search results — there. Black Hula. That had to be it.

Whoever posted it also helpfully named the song: “Mauna Kea,” by King Bennie Nawahi. I quickly found the song on emusic and as a bonus, I downloaded the entire record, which will be fabulous addition to this weekend’s soundtrack.

And I have solved a mystery that’s been bugging me for nearly 20 years.

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