Sep 2, 2007
Confluence of Icelandic and Hawaiian Music
I recently bought another Benni Hemm Hemm recording (entitled--surprise!-- Benni Hemm Hemm) and was delighted to find a Hawaiian song on it. My first post (3/21/06) answered "Why Iceland?" with "it goes so well with Hawaiian music." Benni agrees! The song is Ku-Ui-Po, which you will probably recognize from Elvis and Blue Hawaii--it's a beautiful version.
Benni fans will also recognize "I could love you in a wheelchair baby." (I just LOVE the way he says "Baby".) It's guaranteed to run through your mind constantly, but not in a bad way (like, for example, most musical numbers--in my opinion--with the exception of songs from Blue Hawaii, naturally...and from other classics such as Cannibal!, The Musical, or Lagan).
There are a number of songs in English, and I particularly like Fight. The lyrics to most of the Icelandic songs are translated on Benni's web page. Labbie is from their first recording, Summer Plate, and was, I believe, composed in Italy. The saddest song in the world, Til Eru Fræ, is on this recording.
These songs have humor, sweetness, and a horn section that just won't quit. Those horns are the Whole Steamboat. Benni and his band ROCK!