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First published in March 2011

(The following is an extract from Chris Bourke's 'Blue Smoke' blog at

The man regarded as New Zealandís leading jazz guitarist of the 1950s passed away on Saturday 5 March. Mark Kahi grew up in Rawene in the Hokianga, and Auckland.  He spent most of his performing career in Auckland in the late 40s and 50s, and Christchurch, where he lived in recent years.  Born on 29 December 1926, he was one of three musical Kahi brothers, alongside Alex and Tommy (also a well-known guitarist and teacher).
(click here to read Chris's full blog about Mark)


I was big fan of Mark's talent.....a remarkable jazz guitarist.  I was fortunate to have played with Mark for about two years in the sixties at the Rex Hotel in Kings Cross, Sydney.  He blew me away every night with his inventive licks and improvisations.  I live in Singapore now and just found out about his passing and although extremely saddened it bought back some incredible memories.  He was one of the best. - Tony Gaha
Mark was a gentle man of music. Superb guitarist with enormous ears.  A muso who truly listened and knew the jazz standard stuff inside out whilst the rest of us tried to play it the right way up.  And a wicked quiet sense of Maori humour.  A loving family person.  Respected, professional. - Peter Hindmarsh
RIP Mark Kahi - Ray Columbus
Awesome guitarist from the sixties - Truda Chadwick
(click here to email me your tribute to Mark and I'll add it in -

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