Charles E. King comes home, 1949.

Charles E. King, Songwriter and Bandleader, Here From New York

Charles E. King flew into town Monday night, bringing with him 75 years of Hawaiian music.

The noted songwriter, bandleader and authority on Hawaiian music and music folklore, is here from New York for two months.

At 75, he is still stalwart in frame—as when he played baseball and football for Kamehameha schools many years ago—and his fertile mind is still turning out musical scores.

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For instance, on the plane, en route from San Francisco, he wrote the music for his latest composition, “Television Hula.”


It’s pat to the moment in fast-moving modern times, it’s inspired partly by the fact that he’s just finished nine television skits with Songstress Lena Machado and Guitarist Andy Iona in New York—and has an agreement to make 40 more.

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Telecast, Inc.,  one of the big television studies, engaged him for the first skits and they proved so successful the other 40 were negotiated.

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In a few moments of reunion at The Star-Bulletin office Tuesday, Mr. King said:

“‘Ke Kali Nei Au’ is in demand all over the country. Incidentally, this wasn’t written originally as a wedding song—just a Hawaiian love song, a song of affection and trysting, ‘Waiting for Thee.’

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“The old standby, ‘Imi Au Ia Oe’ and ‘Na Lei o Hawaii’ (Song of the Islands), are perennially popular.

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“Arthur Godfrey, radio star, likes to play the ukulele, also to try Hawaiian songs. He does pretty well, too.


“Nineteen hundred steel guitar players met in convention at Buffalo last year. (Steel guitar playing was created in Hawaii.)

“I hope to write two or three new Hawaiian songs during my stay here.”

Mr. King is stopping at his home in Nuuanu, 220 Jack lane, which he left for New York six and a half years ago.

(Star-Bulletin, 2/16/1949, p. 24)


Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Volume LV, Number 17601, Page 24. February 16, 1949.


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