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Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop

Tiki Central / General Tiki

Need Hawaiin assitance please...

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Hi Fellow Centralites...
While working on writing the "vocal" section of one of our songs (Tropically Disturbed - combines Surf instrumental with some tribal and exotica influences) I thought it would be a good idea to add a distant male voice shouting something like "throw her down the volcano" or something to that effect (just before the lady screams).
Well, I know I could probably find some online dictionary, but I wouldn't want it to come out as a ridiculous sentance, as I know nothing about Hawaiin language.
So - does any want to help? It could also be another Polynesian language...it just needs to sound good and be correct.

Mahalo (ok so I know 2 words)

From the Land of the $27 Myers's

[ Edited by: kick_the-reverb on 2003-07-15 07:27 ]


Hey kick -

Well, I am a fish-belly white haole, but I wonder how I would feel if I was Hawaiian...I mean, did real Hawaiians (or any Polynesians) ever actually throw women into active volcanoes?

Okay, I know this is TIKI Central, and we are all supposed to keep our sense of humor and realize there's a lot of goofy haole self-mockery going on, but this somehow strikes me a bit different. If it was me, I'd wait until someone like Gecko weighed in on this, ya know what I mean? Who knows, maybe he'll give ya a good translation and tell me to no make ass! :)

ethnically sensitive Spidey-senses tingling,

i found this on a page detailing the PU'UKOHOLA HEIAU NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE:

Historian Russell Apple, on the other hand, believes that Pu'ukohola continued to be used for human sacrifices until the kapu abolition in 1819. He thinks that the flammable structures on the temple platform were burned at that time or left to rot. Some of the statues were probably hidden.



I had a peek modchick65, and there's nothing about volcanoes...I have the strangest feeling I'm gonna get shot down in flames on this one.


Hey emspace:
You make a very valid point. But, If you think about it, tiki pop culture is also somewhat of an exploitation of Polynesian ancestry and folklore.
Unfortunaely it's one of the sacrifices that we pay for commercialism, tourism, and capitalism.

I am a Samoan American and I have always been fascinated (loved) the Western interpretation of the islands. Samoa is one big volcanic rock. However, I have never heard stories of any women being sacraficed to the lava gods... but, what a great concept. :)
It is merely a stereotype and it makes for a great Hollywood movie.

I feel that the positive spirit of the islands is kept alive by those who respect the traditions, culture, and "stories".

Anyway, "Throw her from the volcano" in Samoan is "Togi ile lava or volcano"

Phonetically: Tong gee e lei lava

Talofa :tiki:


Hi MTKahuna,

thanx for bringing your input. I don't consider myself the guardian of morality or sensitivity or anything like that, so Ran, I hope you haven't taken offence at my, er, probing.



I'm just a haole, so my opinion shouldn't really count here, but... I'm right in line with emspace on this one. On the one hand, poly pop is a totally goofy, Americanized version of Polynesia, and is extremely abstracted from real culture. On the other hand, I find it really touching that the Mai Kai puts so much effort into being true and respectful with their dances. I can see where some polynesians could take offense, though they really could legitimately take offense with much of poly pop, and not many seem to.

I guess my take on it is that there might be a line there somewhere, but heck if I can see where it is.

So, heck, since a very kind Samoan gave you the words, I'd say go ahead and use 'em.


On 2003-07-15 18:27, Humuhumu wrote:
So, heck, since a very kind Samoan gave you the words, I'd say go ahead and use 'em.

Yup, I'm with you Humuhumu. Never meant to say I was the arbiter of good taste, like I say. I'm Irish, and do I get pissed at Lucky Charms commercials? Nope, but Michael Flatley makes me wanna puke. Go figure...

Happy music-making Ran,


Look at it this way. Would you put a NativeAmerican in your song saying, "How, me scalp'em"

Thanks emspace for your PC ness.


Hi again MTKahuna,

Hee hee, well, a lot of people wouldn't call me PC, but I have always lived in cities where there are a lot of Native Americans, and I grew up feeling respect for aboriginal people everywhere. My wife's career is working with Native kids, she is an employee of a band here that has occupied the same ground continuously for over 3000 years.

It's like this: I like exotica, but I LOVE traditional music; it's like back in the 60s when kids hearing Jimmy Page figured out that the real deal was coming from Howlin' Wolf and Muddy Waters. When I was playing Brazilian and Afro-Cuban music ten years ago, a fellow drummer asked me, "Don't you want to mix it up, change things around, get creative?". I just said no, I was a gringo, humbly doing my best to uphold the tradition, and if I achieved that I was happy.

Your points are well taken. "Tiki" is a goofy Hollywood/Disneyland interpretation of Polynesian culture, pretty harmless in itself, but when it comes to putting words in the mouths of characters, imaginary or real, it might be good to be thoughtful about what those words should be. Hopefully Kickthereverb isn't getting confused by all this debate...

aloha to all, and long life to First Nations everywhere,

Oh My...
I can assure you no disrespect to anyone was meant...the entire existence of our band heavily relies on tounge in cheek "concepts". The name is "The Astroglides", One of our vocals was called "Be Meine Hitler", but I guess as a jew I entitled to joke about that.
Well, back to the subject, I never expected it to stirr up so much trouble, as I thought, and also read here in the past about how native Polynesians are rather amused by the western stereotypes (or another example aquarj gave once was the pop-viking culture in Norway).
Now, I'm kinda hesitant about doing it.
I perfectly understand emspace's arguments, but on the other hand this whole board (and of course Poly Pop) is a celebration of something that has very little to do with authenticity. Hey - we put Moais next to Tikis, listen to Martin Denny and drink cocktails that were invented by Don and Vic...
If I decide to use the text, it's not gonna be something in the "foreground" it's not really gonna be very understandable. I did not want to make up gibbrish (sp?), so I asked.
Well, I'd like to know what other people think, but I'm already leaning against it.



Hey Kick, I'm not so much arguing against your doing it, as trying to get other people, esp. Polynesian people like MTKahuna, to let their feelings be known. My object was to see if this would happen (which it has) and step away to let you view the thread develop and draw whatever conclusion you will. I never meant to stir up trouble, or to make trouble for you. Please understand that.


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