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Choosing Hawaii state instrument proves difficult

April 23, 2014 - 6:19am

HONOLULU — The decision to name a state instrument in Hawaii is proving more difficult than some lawmakers expected.

They say a proposal to give the title to the ukulele seemed like it was going to be an easy bill to pass.

But then fans of the steel guitar and instruments like the ipu gourd made a case that their sounds should represent Hawaii.

To please more musicians, lawmakers are considering naming one “ancient” instrument and one “modern” instrument.

Members of the Senate want to leave the decision up to a group of children to decide which musical tradition should represent the state. Children chose the state fish years ago.

A panel that met Tuesday on two competing bills said the proposals need more work. They plan to meet again on Thursday.

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