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Martin Denny

Martin Denny, born on April 10, 1911 in New York, was a renowned artist who revolutionized the music industry with his unique blend of Exotica. After touring with big bands in the 1930s and serving in the Army Air Corps during World War II, he found himself in Hawaii in the mid-1950s. There, at the Hawaiian Village Hotel at Waikiki, he formed a quartet featuring Arthur Lyman on vibraphone. Their performances around a pool using unconventional instruments from Hawaii and Asia created Martin Denny's signature sound.

Mr. Denny gained widespread recognition when his recording of Les Baxter's "Quiet Village" reached the Top 5 of Billboard pop charts in 1958. His debut album "Exotica," released in 1959, topped charts for five weeks and became an iconic symbol of stylized Polynesiana during the early cold-war era.

Throughout his career, Martin Denny continued to release albums such as "Forbidden Island," "Afro-Desia," and "Primitiva." These albums provided the soundtrack to the trend for tiki culture and influenced artists like Tak Shindo and Esquivel!. In recognition of his contributions to music, Mr. Denny received a Nā Hōkū Hanohano Lifetime Achievement Award from Hawaiʻi Academy of Recording Arts in 1990.


Martin Denny
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