HONOLULU - Na Hoku Hanohano award-winning recording artist and Hawaii entertainer Cyril Pahinui is remembered Sunday, a day after his passing at the age of 68. He had been in the hospital since February 2016, dealing with pneumonia and other medical ailments. 

Pahinui is known for his distinct musical style on the slack key guitar. Fellow musician Gregg Sardinha met Pahinui in the late 1980s, and they played together for more than 12 years. "He was already playing different chords on a guitar. He was like his dad," recalls Sardinha of their first meeting. 

Cyril's father was the great Gabby Pahinui, endearingly remembered as "Pops," and also known for adding his own spin on slack key. 

Kawika Kahiapo, another musical colleague, remembers, "Uncle Cyril would do some amazing stuff in slack key tuning that was almost like jazz in its approach, and so many of us would be dumbfounded in his ability to do that."

Pahinui is a man many consider a virtuoso of his time. "For this generation of slack key players, he [Cyril] is 'Pops,'" says Sardinha. One song, Sundown, comes to mind. 

"He wrote a lot of songs at the time, and Sundown was nice. We played that a lot when it was me, his brother Bla [James “Bla" Phillip], and Guy Sio," says Sardinha.

For many of Pahinui's friends, some the greatest memories were made while sharing the spotlight. Musician Kata Maduli shares, "I would joke with him on stage or when we recorded, 'Eh, C, what chord is this song?' And he'd look at me and go, 'C, brah, c.'"

For others, it's the precious moments of a pule (prayer) behind the scenes. "Following that prayer, we talked about their dad's involvement in my life and where I was at. At the moment, [it was] being with them and - full circle- being able to share the stage with them," shares Kahiapo.

Some, like Sardinha, cherish the country-style backyard jam sessions. "I miss that already. I missed that before, because he was such a nice person to sit down and play with."

Others, like Maduli, are grateful he always took their quick calls for musical advice. "He said, 'Oh, what you would do with this song?' I would play it and say, 'OK, what about this song?' The next thing I knew, I did 12 songs. Oh my gosh. Those were fun times, you know."

It's clear- Cyril Pahinui left a lasting mark on the lives he touched.