April 9th, 2011
Led by award-winning singers-composers Amy Hanaiali’i Gilliom and Henry Kapono,
a group of Island entertainers have come together to record an anthem, “Together Again: A Song for Japan” to benefit the Japanese tsunami-earthquake relief efforts.
“Japan and her people have been so supportive of my career and music,” Hanaiali'i Gilliom said in a statement. “When this tragedy took place, I knew I had to give back in some way. I know a song will not build a home, or bring back a loved one, but I hope it calms their souls and to remind them that their brothers and sisters in Hawaii are always here to help.”
Said Kapono: “Japan continues to be in our thoughts and we hope we can send them positive vibes, prayers and our mana (Hawaiian for spiritual strength) – we have placed all of this into our song and we hope they feel our aloha.”
The “We Are the World”-type spirit-lifter, advocating oneness and deep roots and aloha, is available for purchase. There was no immediate word if it would be performed as part of Sunday’s (April 10) mammoth “Kokua For Japan” benefit from noon to 5 p.m. at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
With cooperation and participation by Hawaii’s music community, the project was completed within a week. Among those involved: singer Raiatea Helm, the musical trio Manoa DNA featuring dad Lloyd Kawakami and sons Alex and Nick Kawakami, bassist Steve Jones, singer Robi Kahakalau, Kapono’s niece Hilo Ka’aihue, singer Mailani, singer Danny Kennedy, and musicians Steve Jones, Chino Montero and Sean Na’auao. A spoken dedication is performed by slam poet Kealoha.
Paliku Theatre at Windward Community College provided recording space, with award-winning producers Milan Bertosa and Shawn Pimental contributing their expertise. OC-16 documented the session with a music video shoot.
The tune may be purchased and downloaded for 99 cents; the companion music video is $1.99. To preview and purchase (the audio has been posted, the video should be online soon), go to http://www.mountainapplecompany.com/togetherhawaii.
All proceeds will be donated to Hawaii chapter of the American Red Cross, Japanese Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami Disaster Relief Fund.