The only records from Hawaii that I ever sought out to collect came from a 1970/80’s comedian called Rap Reiplinger. I got one of the ‘Best of’ CD’s that was issued a while back, but until I started thinking about it during a visit to Honolulu, I hadn’t realized that he had a few more records out that I had somehow “missed”.
He has a small Wikipedia page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rap_Reiplinger . I have virtually never seen any LP’s of ‘Hawaiian origin humor’ for sale in Los Angeles.
LP CRAB DREAMS MTN AP MAC 1007 1979 11 TRKS
LP DO I DARE DISTURB THE UNIVERSE? PARADISE PR 2001 1979 16 TRKS
LP POI-DOG MTN AP MAS 1002 1978 11 TRKS
LP STRANGE BIRD PARADISE SLP 2002 1981 11 TRKS
LP TOWED AWAY PARADISE SLP 2003 1982 10 TRKS
CD POI-DOG WITH CRABS MTN AP MACD 2020 1992 22 TRKS
Mr. Rap was a busy man in his lifetime – he was in a comedy trio in the 70’s called “The Booga Booga Trio” (I don’t think they ever made records) and he made an Emmy-winning video (or so I read on the internet), “Rap’s Hawaii” (from 1982, which I also couldn’t ever find in Honolulu; supposed on DVD as of ‘03). You have to have a bit of ‘local knowledge’ to get some of the jokes on this stuff, but the LP’s I have are all slickly produced and genuinely funny. Do I detect a “Cheech & Chong” influence here?
I was saddened to read of his death in the liner notes of the CD I was given (and again on the internet) – he passed away in 1984, supposedly from drugs. Comedians and drugs really seem to go together – maybe this is why I never took up either practice?
The 1978 LP “Poi Dog” looks just amazing – he’s dressed up as a half-man / half-woman, making the ‘shaka’ sign while dipping his hand in (presumably) a plastic bowl of poi. My guess is that the copies of this LP that made their way to California were brought home by happy vacationers…and sold to the used LP store as soon as rent was due. Back in the late 70’s / early 80’s, it was cool to drop tracks from the “Poi Dog” LP into mix tapes, and wait for the confused reactions to arise!
So, if you’re tired of ‘typical’ (English-language) comedy LP’s, try one of Rap’s on for size. If you can find one, that is. It’s in English…but it’s as difficult to understand as some English (or Canadian) comedy. Hawaii is very much it’s own thing, after all.
Mahalo, Rap Reiplinger! Aloha, Steve & Danno! Harry Owens! Duke’s Hula Pie!