Show and Tell Hawai'i

Island Sounds is back: And away we go!

March 20th, 2009

It’s been a couple of months since we’ve tended to Island Sounds, our reviews of local CDs.
So, time to relaunch:


Jake Shimabukuro arguably is the No. 1 ‘ukulele virtuoso; he tours solo, jams with Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band and Bela Fleck and the Flecktones and records with Yo-Yo Ma. Alone with his trusty uke and playing “raw” amid adoring fans in clubs large and small, Ol’ Frenetic Fingers gently sweeps through 12 emotion-charged originals (some known, some new) and five covers (a uke take of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” and a killer Bach bit on “Two-Part Invention No. 4 in D Minor”) with even a tribute to his Asian heritage on “Sakura, Sakura.” It’s a journey of exploration and an explosion of artistry — with a little between-song patter justifying the “live” element. A dynamic Shimabukuro soars! | Wayne Harada, special to The Advertiser

Overview: Shimabukuro’s sizzling strumming style gets ample showcase, but warm, intimate and quiet moments endear, too. But where’s the DVD version?

**** (four stars)

Hawaiian Man
Mountain Apple

A pioneer of the Jawaiian music sound, Brother Noland returns to his Island roots with this revealing, reassuring assembly of traditional Hawaiian tunes rendered in old-school kupuna style, laced with wisdom and soulfulness. Highlights: a playful “Henehene Kou ‘Ana,” a reflective “My Little Grass Shack at Kealakekua, Hawaii,” an expressive “Great Hawaiian Man” (in English) and new versions of “Royal Hawaiian Hotel” and  his signature “Pua Lane.” Noland’s casual style (he plays uke and slack-key guitar) is blessed with accompaniment of Ledward Kaapana, Mike Kaawa and Kawika Kahiapo; his  Hawaiian eloquence makes this a winnah. Don’t miss the bonus track, “Mr. Sun Cho Lee.”| Wayne Harada, special to The Advertiser

Overview: This is kanikapila time, a moment for sharing; happily, Noland plays live Sundays at the new Kani Ka Pila club at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach.

**** (four stars)

One Response to “Island Sounds is back: And away we go!”

  1. Moke Young:


    This is great news!

    For me it's up front and personal because those names mentioned above have been come up a lot during conversations and just lastnight I was told that Jake will be performing in the coming weeks in California and the folks there are stoked!

    Jakes becoming a household name in the New York metropolitan area and a testament to his abilities and broad appeal.

    For Brother Noland, man I love hearing his rendition of "Kona Kai Opua" because like the calming seas of Kona, it is sweet! Kai malino........a o Kona!

    I've never witnessed anyone who performed from very deep within the soul and I am so happy to see that Brother Noland hired Mike Kaawa, Ledward Kaapana and Kawika Kahiapo because they too play from the abiss of a healthy soul.

    They all are very Happy people too and I can't wait to hear their new art!

    I've found over the year's that some of the finest folks in the world are talented musicians bar none and it will show in this new CD.

    It must have been such a humorous time when you have four easy going and humorous fellow's cutting it up! Those are goodtimes!

    I tell you what though, musicians are well positioned to pick so many up from the economical malaise and brush them off with ton's of humor and music truly from the heart that is very rare today with the influenced of studio produced alternatives that resembles machine made sounds.

    Mahalo's for sharing goodnews!

    With Aloha,

    Moke Young

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