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Archive for October, 2012

Eisteddfod in New York! (11/2-11/4)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Hey gang!  Aloha!

I wanted to tell you all about an upcoming weekend of traditional music and dance.   Lots of really cool musicians willing to share what they know.  And, from what I’m told, awesome jam sessions!

Sounds fantastic, right?  I know!

Oh!  And yup.  I’m gonna be there, too…

If you’re anything at all like me, I’m sure you’ve got questions.  So… Please check out the link for more information:

See you there!


Aloha kākou!

Here’s this week’s question:

Which of these songs is also sometimes called “The Rocking Chair Hula”?





• Please submit your answer by posting a reply to this entry on the blog.
• All correct answers will be eligible to win a special email message from me.
• One winner will be randomly chosen at 11:59pm HST.

Will YOU be this week’s lucky winner?

Good Luck!

Aloha Poʻalima! Happy Aloha Friday!

** Crooner Update:

You all continue to amaze me with your knowledge!

The answer is A. NOHO PAIPAI.  A favorite of so many Hawaiian musicians and hula dancers.  Fun and, depending on it’s played–sassy!

And this week’s winner, chosen randomly from all of the correct answers is… (Drum roll, please…) NOHO!  Congrats, NoHo!  That makes you this week’s Trivia Superstar!  (And interestingly, while your name was chosen randomly, it’s so fitting YOU should be this week’s winner: the word NOHO, in Hawaiian, can mean seat or chair.  A fitting winner, indeed!

A giant MAHALO to all of you for playing along in this week’s Aloha Friday Trivia Challenge!  And I hope you will play again next week, too!

Happy Weekend, gang!  Off to enjoy some time with my buddy who is visiting from LA!

Much Aloha,



Aloha gang!  It’s time for another video blog!

This week I’ve decided to share one of my 8-minute timed writings that I’ve done using the prompt: MOUNTAIN APPLE–and the story behind the writing.

Will it find its way into a collection??

Happy Aloha Thursday!


Strummin’ in the City (#79)

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Jason Poole, Accidental Hawaiian Crooner, Columbia University Medical Center, Kamaka, Molokai, Strummin' in the City, Urban strummer

GOOD MEDICINE: Kamaka soprano (standard) 'ukulele & Columbia University Medical Center (NYC, 10.16.12)

A lot of folks find it hard to believe that I carry my ‘ukulele with me all the time.

But you never know when you might feel like strumming! And as Pops is always quick to advise: E ho’omākaukau. Be prepared.

Ah… the life of an urban strummer!

(Do you like the ʻukulele in the photo? Check out for some of the best ʻukuleles on the planet!)


The Re-Making of an Artist (Part 2)

Monday, October 15, 2012

(Note: To read PART 1 of this story, please click HERE.)

I continued to hear the echo for nearly 26 years: YOU ARE NOT AN ARTIST.

I went on to college to pursue the arts, but LIVE art forms:  Music.  Performance.

I repeated the mantra: Never leave a permanent mark.

I ached for something I couldn’t identify other than “my missing piece.”


They were teachers, Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.  Artists to the core, though their backgrounds were in different mediums.  Each of them LIVED their art.

They “created a new art form” that was more about process than product.  An art-based meditative practice.

I wanted to believe.

I found myself in a room with over a hundred other curious souls—all of us eager to learn about this meditative artistic process.

She sat beside me at the table and smiled.

We shared our stories, told each other about our lives and our families.  Stories of the road that lead us to this moment, this place.

She made me laugh.

I trusted her.

We became instant buddies.


They believed in the students that had come to learn.  These students that had come from all over the world.

They smiled and, with great confidence and trust, they handed out kits full of precious art supplies.

She laughed with delight.  Deftly and gracefully, she played with the new toys: pencils, pens, fine papers, a sketchbook.   “Aren’t these great?!”

I started to panic.  Sweat beads formed on my brow.

I wanted to run out of the room.  Inside my body, sirens were going off:  ”NO!  YOU ARE NOT AN ARTIST.  YOU ARE A FRAUD.  YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO PLAY WITH THESE SUPPLIES.”

I froze.

She noticed.

She poked my arm.  “Those supplies don’t bite.  Go ahead.  Make a mark.”

I woke up from the nightmare and told myself what was in the past needed to stay in the past.

I took a deep breath.

I opened the sketchbook and uncapped a pen.


They lead the students through a class.

I listened. Trusted.  Participated in the practice.

We worked side by side, making deliberate strokes of the pen on the page. Breathing.  Creating.

They signaled it was time to look and admire the art that had been created.

(I peeked at her notebook beside me.  A masterpiece made with confidence and control.)

I covered my page with my arm.

She pushed it away.  “Let’s see what you did!”

I couldn’t believe my eyes!  Had I done that?

She smiled.  “See?!  I KNEW YOU WERE AN ARTIST!”

I choked, not believing what she’d called me.  An artist?


We studied side by side, learning not only how to create, but also how to teach.  How to share what we’d been learning.


They handed me a certificate at the end of the course—naming me a certified teacher of the method.

They trusted us.  All of us with different backgrounds.  Different levels of artistic skills.  Differernt aspirations.

They entrusted each of us with their method.  Their tools for creating art. And tools to help others create art in a deliberate and meditative way.

We–all of the students–hugged as we left the course.  Newly certified teachers.



I am shocked.  Humbled.  And growing more confident every day as I uncap the pen and make simple marks on the page.

I look forward to finding a way to reach others.  To share this awesome practice.

I look forward to finding the folks that say, “I’m not an artist.”

And I look forward to showing them how they can embrace that side of themselves.  That side that’s in all of us.  That side that always was inside of us.

Artists—ALL OF US–in our own way.


We can silence the echoes.

We can rewrite the mantras.

We can find our missing piece.

We can move forward.

Jason Poole, Accidental Hawaiian Crooner, Zentangle, Rick Roberts, Maria Thomas, CZT

(Note:  The method I studied is called zentangle®.  In late September of this year, I became a CZT™, Certified Zentangle Teacher.  And I’ve joined a community of teachers all over the world that have studied with Zentangle’s founders, Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.  Please visit to learn more and to find a CZT in your area.)


Aloha kākou!

Here’s this week’s question:

Which one of these albums was NOT released by the always wonderful Amy Hānaialiʻi (Gilliom)?





• Please submit your answer by posting a reply to this entry on the blog.
• All correct answers will be eligible to win a special email message from me.
• One winner will be randomly chosen at 11:59pm HST.

Will YOU be this week’s lucky winner?

Good Luck!

Aloha Poʻalima! Happy Aloha Friday!

**Crooner Update:

You all sure do know your Hawaiian music facts!  Wow!

The correct answer is C. Bridge Between Generations.

I thought this one might be tricky–Amy had recorded an album called HAWAIIAN TRADITION and the “feel” of that album is like she’s “bridging generations” of Hawaiian music–old and new.  I thought that might trip you all up.  But nope!  You are on it!  And yes… the album BRIDGE BETWEEN GENERATIONS was recorded by the one and only Darlene Ahuna. (Another favorite!)

This week’s winner, chosen randomly from all of the correct answers, is… (Drum roll, please…) LOUANNE PETERS!  Congrats, LouAnne!  That makes you this week’s Trivia Superstar!

A giant MAHALO to each of you for playing along this week and sharing your knowledge of Hawaiian music with me.  I hope you’ll play along next week, too!

(And if you have an idea for an ALOHA FRIDAY TRIVIA CHALLENGE question, please send it my way!)

May you all have an awesome weekend!

A hui hou…