by: COURTESY PHOTO - Guitarist Keola Beamer, known as the master of the slack key guitar, will perform in Forest Grove Saturday, Oct. 26.Keola Beamer, one of Hawaii’s premier singer/songwriters, arrangers and composers performs at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27, at Pacific University.

Beamer is known as a master of the slack key guitar.

Slack key is an acoustic guitar tradition and fingerpicking style unique to Hawaii, in which one or more of the strings are lowered or “slacked” to produce different tunings that capture the harmonic structures of Hawaiian music. The picking techniques mimic the yodels and falsettos of Hawaiian singing.

A fifth-generation musician, Beamer wrote the classic Honolulu City Lights, one of the best-selling recordings in the history of Hawaiian music. Beamer has recorded many of the songs written by his ancestors, from the lively Keawaiki to the lullaby Pupu Hinuhinu.

He has recorded and produced more than 20 albums, winning numerous Hoku Awards, Hawaii’s equivalent of the Grammies. He has appeared on Sesame Street and on NBC’s Today Show. He is a Grammy nominee and in 2010 received the “Lifetime Achievement” award from the Hawai’i Academy of Recording Arts in Honolulu, Hawai’i.

Tickets are on sale through the university box office. Prices are $22, $20 for seniors, $11 youth 12 and under. The performance will be held in the Taylor-Meade Performing Arts Center. For more information, call 503-352-2918 or visit or

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