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Selected MP3s of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, and classic easy listening from the original vinyl.

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Guitars & All That Jazz was a radio station that webcast via Live365 for 11 years, ending in June 2011. The playlist consisted of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, early rock 'n' roll, lounge music and classic easy listening.

I hope to share some of this music with you via this blog. Most of it will be taken from the original vinyl (LPs and 45s) , cassettes and the occasional commercially unavailable CD.

Here's hoping you'll find something to enjoy. Please note files are available only for a limited time.

I urge you to purchase the digital version of the albums featured, either on CD or via download, wherever possible.

Listen to the Music
There are now two music streams. Click the appropriate player to the right.
1. Guitars & All That Jazz: Five hours of the best in jazz, guitars and other instrumental gems. New songs are added weekly.
2. Tiki Shores: Music to sweep you away to a tropical isle, a South American dance floor or a bossa nova on the beach at Rio. About 4.5 hours of classic exotica music, Latin rhythms and bossa nova.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Orchestral Strings - Hawaii's Favorite Instrumentals


Although this album was recorded in Hawaii you'd never know it if you didn't have the CD insert at hand. That's not to say this is a bad recording. But if you're looking for genuine Hawaiian instrumentals with ukulele and steel and slack key guitar this isn't going to appeal to you. It's strictly an orchestral recording.

Hawaii's Favorite Instrumentals was issued in 1983 by Hula Records, one of the islands' top recording enterprises, but was probably recorded earlier as the CD was mastered from analog sources. The sound quality and stereo separation are superb, so lovers of easy listening music that has an expansive aural palette would be well advised to search for a copy.

Recording credits are slim; no arranger or musicians are credited. The executive producer was Don McDiarmid Jr., the head of Hula Records, while his son, Donald P. (Flip) McDiarmid III, was the hands-on producer.

McDiarmid Jr., who died in 2010 at age 88, campaigned for years to have a Hawaiian music category added to the Grammy Awards. That finally happened in 2005.

McDiarmid Jr. helped launch the careers of many Hawaiian entertainers, including Don Ho, who made his first commercial recordings for Hula Records. Among the other artists who recorded for Hula were Gabby Pahinui and the Cazimero Brothers.

"One thing that he really stressed was the importance of preserving Hawaiian music correctly, by doing that not only through recorded music, but by printed lyrics and biographical material about the artists and about the songs themselves," Flip McDiarmid told the Honolulu Advertiser newspaper after his father's death.

Unfortunately that kind of information isn't available for this album. But the Orchestral Strings, whoever the might be, provide a fine version of Don Ho's signature song Tiny Bubbles.

Tiny Bubbles



Hawaii's Favorite Instrumentals is out of print and doesn't look like it's available as a download. However, copies of the CD frequently turn up on eBay and other auction sites at a reasonable price. Those sold on Amazon tend to be overpriced.

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