“It’s warm, peaceful music”, says Slim. “Some call it ‘Heavy Mellow’ music.”
Slack Key Slim is really G.W. Myers. He began learning slack key* in 1999. In 2003 Slim travelled to Hawai’i Island to attend workshops with Ledward Ka’apana, Dennis Kamakahi and Jeff Peterson. Subsequent trips have included studies with Cyril Pahinui and Makana.
“The roots of slack key can be traced to the 1830s when the guitar was first introduced to the islands by Spanish and Mexican cowboys who came over to help Hawaiian cowboys (paniolo) with an overpopulation of cattle. The Hawaiians quickly adopted the guitar into their culture, slacking the strings to create many ingenious tunings to suit their music. ‘Slack key’ means that some of the strings are loosened from the standard tuning, with the thumb playing the bass while the other fingers play the melody and improvisation”. – from the CD liner notes of ‘Sonny Solo’,Sonny Chillingworth, Dancing Cat Records,1994