Eddie Lund - A Short Biography
by James K. Sayre
Copyright © 2003
All Rights Reserved
Eddie Lund was the father of modern Tahitian folk music. He was born October 12, 1909 and grew up in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, where he first worked as a musician. In 1936 he made his first visit to the islands of French Tahiti. He spent a month there and immediately fell in love with the place, the people and their music. He returned to his job as a pianist in Portland, Oregon, saved his money and in 1938, moved permanently to Tahiti. He learned to speak French and Tahitian. He began composing songs in Tahitian, incorporating native melodies and drumbeats with his own creative thoughts. He organized a band of Tahitian musicians and starting in the business of making records on the Tahiti Records label, based in Papeete. In the 1950's these records were distributed on a worldwide basis by Criterion Records of Hollywood, California. Eddie Lund passed away in 1973.
To the untrained ears of listeners like myself who live on the mainland, USA, the folk music of Tahiti and Hawai'i sound quite similar. Both languages are Polynesian and thus share a common origin.
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Web page last updated on 10 May 2003.