PahuThe Hawaiian term ‘Pahu’ translates into ’drum’, ‘Niu’ being the Hawaiian word for ‘coconut’. The traditional pahu hula (hula drum) was carved from coconut stumps and covered with sharkskin (although possibly other types of native wood (koa, breadfruit, etc.) may have been used.)

The pahu is carved out of a single piece of wood; a bowl-like septum separates the sound chamber from the base or carved arches and a sharkskin membrane is lashed with sennit to the base.

Pahu were made with great care. In pre-European times (pre-1778) each part of the drum's body, especially the sennit, 'aha, used to lash the sharkskin to the base, required special prayers which were chanted during the processes of making the sennit and lashing the skin to the drum.