Kipuka Leo reports the Hawaiian music scene
Aloha pumehana kākou e nā hoa o KTUH! If your ears are ever craving some ʻono Hawaiian music, there are some new voices hitting the Hawaiian music scene who come right out of UH Mānoa. Showcasing flawless three-part harmonies and unreal falsetto high notes, both of these groups are reminiscent of the best of Hawaiian music’s golden era, with a youthful twist that defies the norm.
Keauhou is a trio comprised of Kahanuola Solatorio and brothers Nick and Zachary Lum- all of whom are current UH Mānoa students. Literally translated, “Keauhou” means “the new generation”, which perfectly describes the fresh breath of air they are by perpetuating traditional Hawaiian mele in today’s Hawaiian music scene. Playing every other Sunday night at Imua Lounge from 6pm-8pm and Wednesdays at the Aulani Disney Resort and Spa from 5:30pm-9pm, their repetoire consists of Hawaiian mele that are not often heard anymore on mainstream Hawaiian radio. Kahanuola’s lofty but controlled high notes, Nick’s strong bass and Zachary with a familiar yet steady melody – are what makes Keauhou so recognizable and yet so fresh in a progessively changing mainstream Hawaiian music community. Check out their Facebook page under “Keauhou Music” to get updated on their other appearances and gigs.
Another must see up and coming group is ʻUheʻuhene (literally, “tra-la-la”). ʻUheʻuhene consists of current UH Mānoa students Paul Robins and Jordan Aina Asing along with Heather Kapuaokamakahala Kalua. Despite being “on-call” at Chiko’s Tavern, everytime ʻUheʻuhene plays there they pack the place in. True to their name, listening to them sing is like taking a stroll down the lane of Hawaiian mele…well, more like a skip-hop-frolic down the lane with a falsetto kick in your step and cha-lang-a-lang ukulele background music, if you catch my drift. Going to see ʻUheʻuhene play is a guaranteed good time. You’ll find yourself taken aback with awe when Aina hits that first note of “None Hula”, or when Paul slides easily into a falsetto power note in his “Manu ʻŌʻō”, or my personal favorite (and I recommend you request of them) is Kapua’s “Punaluʻu” – I can tell you right now, you’re jaw will drop. You can catch them and request the above songs at their next gig on December 9th at Club Ke Kai Lounge on Hotel Street from 6pm-9pm.
But of course, one of the BEST places to hear great traditional Hawaiian music, is on the Kīpuka Leo show every Sunday from 3pm-6pm right here on KTUH! The only show currently done completely in the Hawaiian Language – e komo pū kākou i ke Kīpuka Leo!