Dude Sings Like A Lady
:: Mahi Beamer - He'eia ::
Mahi Beamer, a tenor from Hawaii, has the ability to take his voice into a high-register falsetto and sing it out like a woman. This is a apparently an ancient tradition in the music of the islands spanning back to the times when it was kapu, or forbidden, for women to sing.
He'eia is the b-side of a single from his first album, released in 1958. The a-side, "Pupu Hinu Hinu," was written by his grandmother, a notable Hawaiian songwriter, Helen Desha Beamer. Mahi's 1962 second LP consisted mainly of songs written by his grandmother. Actually, the whole Beamer ohana is one of Hawaii's most highly respected musical families, consisting of composers, hula teachers, chanters, and a slack-key guitarist cousin, Keola Beamer. Ohana means family, and yes, I learned that from repeated, enjoyable viewings of Lilo & Stitch.