The Descendants, based on Kaui Hart Hemmings' highly acclaimed novel of the same name, is scored exclusively with Hawaiian music. Hemmings, who comes from Hawaii, weaves into her writing the island themes of family, soil and inheritance, and the movie too has a strong sense of place, not least thanks to its soundtrack. Given the intention of the filmmakers to lend the movie a distinct Hawaiian flavour, the natural direction to take was to use the sounds of the islands, and the music plays a crucial part in evoking an authentic mood. Most of the titles on the soundtrack feature established masters of Hawaiian music, whether modern and classical: names such as Gabby Pahinui, Ray Kane, Keola Beamer, Lena Machado, Sonny Chillingworth, Jeff Peterson, and Rev. Dennis Kamakahi.
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