• Hawaiian luau bringing island taste to Interior Alaska


    By Gary Black gblack@newsminer.com of the Fairbanks Daily News Miner FAIRBANKS — George Kahumoku Jr. is more than just a master of Hawaiian music. He’s also a master of Hawaiian cuisine. Kahumoku, along with Uncle Richie Ho’opi’i and Ledward Kaapana, make up the Masters of Hawaiian music, an island ensemble bringing stories, songs and tales of island life to Interior Alaska this week with performances in Delta, Fairbanks and Healy. On Friday, Kahumoku and Ho’opi’i are acting as guest chefs at a Hawaiian luau at The Blue Loon, which serves as a fundraiser for the Fairbanks Concert Association while allowing Kahumoku and Ho’opi’i to show…

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  • Edmonton Folk Festival -Travelmates

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    You get a glimpse of the true nature of folks when you travel with them.  For one thing, you spend awfully long days with them in unfamiliar surroundings and out of the comfort of personal routines…     Uncle Richard Hoopii and his wife Ululani Traveling with uncle Richard Hoopii and Aunty Ululani definitely has it’s perks. For one, we always give thanks before our journey, during our Journey, after our Gigs and on our journey way home, so we feel it’s a blessing to be with Richard & Ululani and that God is watching over us as well.  Uncle…

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  • Edmonton Folk Festival with Jake Shimabukuro


    Meeting up with Jake Shimabukuro in Edmonton was a pleasant surprise. Dave Jacquin his soundman and tour manager and Alex Ferrari his film and videographer accompanied him. I first met Jake in the late 1990′s when he played ukulele and Hawaiian music with Pure Heart, a musical group made up of John Yamasato on vocals and guitar and Lopaka Colon on congas drums. They came to entertain us at a Lahainaluna High School special assembly. I remember Jake as being this small Japanese kid jumping all over the stage playing his Ukulele really fast. Next time I met him was at…

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  • Edmonton Folk Festival, Canada 2014

    My latest trip with the Masters of Hawaiian Music (Uncle Richard Hoopii, Ledward Kaapana and I) was to the Edmonton Folk Festival in Canada, which inspired this and the next couple of blog posts… At the festival, we were scheduled for 4 performances. We left Maui on a Wednesday night getting out just before an anticipated tropical storm, arrived Thursday morning, did a concert on Friday, two shows (afternoon and evening performances) on Saturday, and a Sunday afternoon show for a total of 8 hours of music performance in 5 days and 4 nights. The rest of the time we…

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  • Ohana: Birthdays in Santa Cruz


    This past weekend, the last weekend of July 2014, Nancy and I went to Santa Cruz California to celebrate Nancy and daughter Jessica’s birthdays together… along with extended family and friends. Jessie celebrated a milestone 30 years old, and Nancy made 61 years old. Nancy birthed Jessie at 31 years of age on her own birthday, so they share the same birthday together. We stayed with Wende Stitt and her son Ben in their beautiful house on Chestnut Street in downtown Santa Cruz. We shared meals, went for morning walks along the Bay, collected firewood, had BBQs and bonfires in…

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