Aubry Archuleta

Aubry Archuleta

Modified & Updated: 30 Jan 2024


If you are a fan of Hawaiian music, chances are you’ve heard of the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival. This annual event showcases the mesmerizing melodies and unique artistry of the slack key guitar, a traditional Hawaiian playing style that has captivated audiences for decades. With its rich history and deep cultural significance, the festival celebrates the vibrant Hawaiian music scene and pays homage to the talented musicians who have mastered this beautiful art form.

In this article, we will explore 10 fascinating facts about the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival. From its humble beginnings to its current status as one of the premier music festivals in Hawaii, we will delve into the captivating world of slack key guitar and discover why this festival holds a special place in the hearts of both locals and visitors alike.

Table of Contents

The festival celebrates the unique style of Hawaiian slack key guitar.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is a one-of-a-kind event that pays homage to the beautiful and soulful sounds of slack key guitar. This distinct style of guitar playing originated in Hawaii and involves loosening or “slacking” some of the strings to create rich, resonant tones.

It is one of Hawaii’s longest-running annual music festivals.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival has been captivating audiences for over 40 years. Since its inception, it has remained a beloved cultural celebration, showcasing the talent and artistry of slack key guitarists from across the islands.

The festival features world-renowned slack key guitar performers.

Every year, the festival brings together a lineup of internationally acclaimed slack key guitarists. From living legends to rising stars, these musicians captivate audiences with their intricate fingerpicking, melodic harmonies, and heartfelt performances.

It offers a variety of music workshops and educational programs.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is not only a showcase of amazing music but also an opportunity for people to learn about slack key guitar. The festival offers workshops and educational programs where attendees can discover the techniques and history behind this unique style of playing.

The festival takes place in multiple locations across Hawaii.

One of the incredible aspects of the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is that it spans across the beautiful islands of Hawaii. From intimate performances in small venues to grand concerts in renowned theaters, the festival brings the magic of slack key guitar to different communities.

It promotes cultural preservation and appreciation.

Through its celebration of slack key guitar, the festival plays a crucial role in preserving and promoting Hawaiian culture. It highlights the importance of traditional art forms and fosters a greater understanding and appreciation for Hawaii’s rich musical heritage.

It attracts both locals and visitors from around the world.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is a truly global event, drawing audiences from all corners of the globe. Whether you are a local resident or a visitor to the islands, this festival offers an unforgettable experience and a chance to immerse yourself in the beauty of Hawaiian music.

It celebrates the spirit of aloha.

At the heart of the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is the spirit of aloha, which encompasses love, hospitality, and unity. The festival not only showcases incredible music but also creates a welcoming atmosphere where people come together to celebrate and connect.

It features a wide range of musical collaborations.

Throughout the festival, artists from different genres and backgrounds come together to create unique musical collaborations. This fusion of creativity and talent results in extraordinary performances that blend traditional slack key guitar with other musical styles.

It showcases the next generation of slack key guitarists.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival provides a platform for young and emerging slack key guitarists to showcase their skills and continue the legacy of this beautiful art form. It is an opportunity for the next generation to shine and carry forward the traditions of Hawaiian slack key guitar.

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is an extraordinary event that honors the rich heritage of slack key guitar and serves as a platform for talented musicians to share their passion with the world. It is a celebration of music, culture, and the timeless beauty of Hawaiian traditions. Don’t miss the chance to experience the magic of the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival and immerse yourself in the enchanting sounds of slack key guitar.


In conclusion, the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is a remarkable event that celebrates the rich cultural heritage of Hawaiian music. With its unique style and captivating performances, it offers an unforgettable experience for both locals and tourists alike. From the mesmerizing melodies to the passionate artists, this festival is a true celebration of the slack key guitar and its profound impact on Hawaiian music.Whether you’re a fan of acoustic music or simply interested in immersing yourself in the enchanting sounds of Hawaii, the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is a must-attend event. It not only showcases the talent of incredible musicians but also provides a deeper understanding of the cultural significance of the slack key guitar.So mark your calendars and plan your trip to Hawaii to witness the beauty and artistry of the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival. Get ready to be swept away by the soulful tunes and immerse yourself in the magical ambiance of this extraordinary musical extravaganza.


1. What is slack key guitar?

Slack key guitar is a unique style of playing the guitar that originated in Hawaii. It involves loosening or “slackening” the guitar strings, allowing for a more resonant and melodic sound. This technique creates a distinctive and soulful sound that is synonymous with Hawaiian music.

2. When and where does the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival take place?

The Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is held annually on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. The festival takes place at various venues across the island, including concert halls, outdoor stages, and cultural centers. The festival typically spans over a few days, featuring performances by renowned slack key guitarists.

3. Are there any admission fees for the festival?

No, the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival is a free event. The organizers believe in promoting and preserving the traditional slack key guitar music of Hawaii, and therefore, they offer free admission to all festival events. However, donations are greatly appreciated to support the festival and the artists.

4. Can I bring my own instruments to the festival?

While it’s not necessary to bring your own instruments to the festival, there are often opportunities for attendees to participate in jam sessions or workshops. If you are an aspiring musician or simply enjoy playing the guitar, feel free to bring your instrument along and join in the musical celebrations.

5. Are there any food and beverage options available at the festival?

Yes, the Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar Festival usually offers a variety of food and beverage options. You can enjoy traditional Hawaiian cuisine, such as poi and kalua pig, as well as other local delicacies. There are also vendors selling refreshing drinks to keep you hydrated throughout the festival.