Archive for March, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Hui! Aloha kākou!
So, tomorrow I’ll be heading to Molokai and then on to Hawaiʻi Island! Can’t wait to get back to the ʻāina! It’s been a while!
But this is NOT a vacation… (although I know it’s gonna be a BLAST!)
I have been blessed with the opportunity to spend some time studying and performing.
Sounds perfect, right?!
I will be posting updates as often as I can. Internet connections can be tough to find in some places. But if you sign up to receive the email updates, you’ll always know when there’s something new to read!
I PROMISE to come back with lots of good stories. Lots of good pictures. (And hopefully, lots of good audio and video, too!)
Talk with you guys soon!
A hui hou…
p.s. Please check out my friendʻs newsletter! Lynda even shares the recipe for her SUPER ʻONO Carmelized Onion Tart! (My mouth is watering just thinking about it.)
Friday, March 19, 2010
Aloha kākou! Here’s this week’s question:
What legendary Hawaiian Crooner would have been celebrating his 90th birthday today?
Hint: He’s one of my ALL-TIME FAVORITE singers in the world.
Hint: In the book, HAWAIIAN MUSIC AND MUSICIANS , George S. Kanahele said this singer was the “possessor of one of the most remarkable voices to come of out Hawaiʻi.”
Will YOU be this week’s lucky winner?
Happy Aloha Friday!
**Update: You guys are GOOD! The correct answer is Alfred Aholo Apaka. The world was blessed with his voice, for sure. The epitome of class…
And this weeks winner is (Drum roll, please…) JENNIFER! Thanks for playing! And be sure to check out the site this weekend. I’ll be posting a special “TAHC Weekend Update.”
Happy Aloha Friday!
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Do you guys remember my first blog post ?
I wrote about the Hawaiian value/quality “ E Hoʻomākaukau .” Loosely translated, it means, “be prepared.”
Sometimes things come up in my world—over and over and over—and that usually means I’m supposed to be paying attention to it . It’s like someone is trying to tell me something.
And that’s exactly what’s happening with this phrase: E Hoʻomākaukau .
I’m in the midst of packing for a two-week trip. For one week, I’ll be on Molokai studying with my kumu (teacher) and hanging out with my hānai (adopted) family. And the next week on the “Big Island” of Hawaiʻi acting as musician (and- gasp!-dancer) with a hula troupe.
Here’s my packing challenge: I’m only allowed to bring one suitcase, a small backpack and my ʻukulele. What things can I bring that will serve me both weeks? I make endless lists. It makes me incredibly anxious.
So … I’ve been putting it off. I’m great at telling myself that I can pack later.
And in my head, I can hear the phrase: E Hoʻomākaukau . Be prepared.
A few years ago, Pops and I attended a wedding reception when I was on Molokai. I was still new to the island and didn’t know many of the people at the gathering.
Pops, being the ultimate entertainer, serenaded the bride and groom with a beautiful ballad. Then he announced that he’d brought a guest with him who would like to honor the wedding couple with a song.
I gulped and lowered my head, trying to hide. I knew he meant me, but I hadn’t known he was going to do this. My ʻukulele was locked in the truck and not with me at the table. I didnʻt know what to sing for them. I didn’t want to embarrass myself in front of the crowd. And most importantly, I didn’t want to embarrass HIM by doing a bad job.
When I looked up at him, he handed me his ʻukulele. And I sang TWO songs. In Hawaiian. For Hawaiians.
After we’d left the reception, he told me that I had done well. (Apparently I had a passed a “test” of some kind.) He was pleased that I had met the challenge placed in front of me. I did it. I played and sang—even though it was WAY out of my comfort zone.
I’ll never forget his words : “And you must ALWAYS be ready. That is part of your kuleana (responsibility). E Hoʻomākaukau .”
Talk about intense! Wow …
I was just talking with Pops about the tsunami warning that threatened Hawaiʻi after a recent earthquake in Chile. I told him how a group of us in New York City had huddled around a television—anxiously waiting and watching for the tsunami make contact with the islands. (Thankfully, they were spared any damage.)
I said, “Pops! Weren’t you terrified?”
He told me they’d gathered what they could and went to higher ground. “That’s what you do when a tsunami hits.“ (He vividly recalls the tsunami of 1946 that wreaked havoc on Hālawa Valley.)
Then he said, in a very matter of fact way, “ E Hoʻomākaukau.” Be prepared.
Could I ever be THAT prepared?
I guess it all comes down to the fact that we need to prepare as best as we can. We need to prepare for the big things. We need to prepare for the small things. AND we need to prepare for the unexpected.
HOW do we prepare? Pops would say “By living in a pono (righteous) way.”
Ah … But that’s a topic for another blog post.
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
I always have my iPod with me. It’s my personal jukebox.
Living in New York City, I spend a lot of time traveling underground via subway–and those rides can be long and boring! But having a collection of great music with me at all times keeps me from losing my mind. I can escape to a tropical isle with the push of a button. Portable paradise!
Here are the TOP 3 SONGS from my iPod this week :
1. Rainbow Connection (The Brothers Cazimero recording on the album Best of the Brothers Cazimero)
A classic song that I first heard sung by Kermit the Frog! But I have to say, The Brothers Cazimero sing it with such heart and such elegance, it would be easy to forget the original! And they do it in Hawaiian! Mahalo, CAZ.
(And a special “mahalo” to Kate for reminding me about this great song!)
2. Palehua (Amy Hānaiali’i Gilliom and Willie K.’s recording on the album Hānaialiʻi)
This song always makes me smile and brings a tear to my eye. I think I must have listened to it hundreds—if not THOUSANDS—of times already. And it never grows old. That’s a true favorite, right?
3. White Ginger Blossoms (Alfred Aholo Apaka’s recording on the album Hawaiian Favorites)
The song showcases his voice beautifully. Its melody is a haunting one—you can expect to be humming it for days after listening to it. A true crooner classic. And as always, Alfred Aholo Apaka delivers the definitive version.
What have YOU been listening to this week? Drop me a line and let me know!