The Steel Guitar was invented by Joseph Kekuku in Hawaii in 1889, when the 11-year-old dropped a comb which hit the strings of his guitar and slid along them, creating the sound that grew to be the #1 music form in the US in 1916, and later became a fixture in Hawaiian, Country, and Blues music. Steel Guitar, and it's cousin slide guitar, have been popularized by Sol Hoopii, Buddy Emmons, Duane Allman, Johnny Winter, George Thorogood, Bonnie Raitt, Elmore James, Son House, Derek Trucks, Lowell George, and many other artists.
Chuck Hughes specializes in Ragtime Hawaiian Steel guitar, the most energetic form of the instrument, which was popularized in its acoustic form in the 1920s. After a lifelong career as a performing Rockabilly guitarist with his band Hillbilly Hellcats, Chuck visited the Maui Steel Guitar Festival in 2013, and decided he would return the next year as a performer. He got to work studying the styles of past and present steel guitar masters, such as Sol Hoopii, King Bennie Nawahi, and Jerry Byrd, and has performed at the Maui Steel Guitar Festival 2014-2017. In addition, he played the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association festivals in Waikiki 2015 and 2017, and Ft. Collins, Co. 2015 and 2016.
Hawaiian steel guitar is a great accompaniment to luaus, pool parties, tiki parties, and Great Gatsby-styled events. It immediately evokes an exotic atmosphere.
Chuck's production method is to record a backing instrumental track in his home studio including rhythm guitar, bass, and ukulele, then to play the steel guitar live against the tracks when he performs. In this way, the performance space can be kept minimal and the fee very affordable.
Currently Chuck is the only steel guitar specialist on Gigmasters.