Note: Hale Pai is no longer being published. These archives of passed issues will remain available as long as there is interest. - Courtesy of San Jose Web

 

Hale Pai
Pacific American-News Journal

Nowemapa/Kekemapa - November/December 1996 Volume 2 Issue 11

 CLYDE HALEMA'UMA'U SPROAT SINGS ...SONGS AND STORIES OF HAWAI'I

“Kindy” Sproat, as his friends and family call him, was born in the district of North Kohala on the island of Hawai'i. He spent the formative years of his childhood with his family in the remote valley of Honokane Iki, a 2 hour mule ride from the end of the government road. His first introduction to music was through his mother, who played a 4-string banjo. With no electricity, radio, or neighbors for miles around, the family entertained themselves in the evenings by singing an array of songs, Hawaiian as well as American.

When the children were ready for school, the family moved to the small community of Niuli'i where music was an important part of life and a way for people to socialize.

Kindy credits “Uncle” Edwin Lindsey, the principal of his grade school, as a major influence on his love for Hawaiian music. Each school day began with an assembly led by “Uncle” Edwin, where teachers and students would sing songs by Queen Emma, Queen Lili'uokaloni, Leleiohoku, and other Hawaiian composers.

Kindy served 20 years in the Air Force and is now retired. For many years, the music he learned in his childhood was something he treasured in his memory and sang for only friends and family.

Today, Kindy is known by many lovers of traditional Hawaiian music for his extraordinary vocal range and his extensive repertoire of older songs. He is especially appreciated for the detail and warmth with which he tells stories about how he learned various songs and the meaning of the Hawaiian lyrics.

In 1988, Kindy received the National Heritage Fellowship Award from the National Endowments for the Arts, our nation's highest recognition for a traditional artist.

Kindy and his wife live overlooking Pololu Valley in North Kohala. Still miles away from electricity and phone lines, they remain a part of the community values expressed in the Hawaiian songs Kindy contiues to love and sing.

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Copyright 1996 Hale Pai Pacific American-News Journal
Last modified: February 28, 1998

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