Definition of the word HAPA :
1) Hawaiian word for “half”
2) A person of mixed Pacific Islander ancestry. If an individual has one parent whom is a Pacific Islander, and one parent whom are of an ethnicity outside of Pacific Islander, they would generally be considered “Hapa”
3) A Musical Duo from Hawaii that consists of one member of South Pacific Ancestry and one guy from New Jersey.
Often encapsulated as the “Sound of Maui” or the “Soundtrack of Hawaii” the music and sound of the group HAPA evokes a place that many people have referred to as heavenly. The sound? Expect to hear hypnotic, liquid guitar runs woven around clear, tenor Hawaiian vocals and immaculate harmonies driven by poetic lyrics exulting the rapture of the Hawaiian landscape, History and Mythology. Just add to this a dose of American Folk-Rock, you have what has been described, as “the most exciting and beautiful contemporary Hawaiian music the world knows” (Maui Times). The overriding quality of their music is one of passion, beauty and serenity, found in the majestic tones of the oli (chant), mele (song) and the exhilarating innovative sounds of virtuoso Guitar performances. “Masterful” is how Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Stephen Stills describes the groups Guitar skills.
The group’s recordings have infused fearless and brilliant production while weaving unique, inventive elements of sound and textures into their intricate South Pacific tapestry. Over the years this has included adding such diverse instruments on their recordings as the Irish Uillian Pipe, Hawaiian Pahu Drum and the Electric Sitar. Guest appearances have included friend and Folk Rock icon Kenny Loggins singing in the Hawaiian Language; Internationally recognized Slam-Poet and Storyteller Kealoha; to the final recorded vocal performance by the “King Of Hawaiian Entertainment” Don Ho. “Complex, sophisticated and flawlessly conceived and engineered, HAPA concerts and recordings are as elaborate and visceral as today’s Hawaii” (Kauai Times) These disparate ingredients blended together musically in the Pacific emote the unique flavor of what Hawaii and HAPA music is: “Beautiful, fragile, spiritual, powerful” (Los Angeles Times).
Their music has appeared in countless National TV shows and feature films, and the group was showcased in a PBS Documentary hosted by Peter Fonda, who describes Hapa as “The music of my Bali Hai”. National Geographic kicked off their “Geo Sessions” music series with profiles on the group and Ben Harper. HAPA was the first Hawaii Musical act to be given to honor of being introduced and performed as themselves on the smash Television series, “Hawaii 5-0”, performing their song “Olinda Road” which closed the first season’s finale. An estimated 25 million viewers watched the show and its re-broadcast. “Since my initial move to Hawaii to appear on “Lost”, the HAPA song “Olinda Road” will always remain the Soundtrack for my Hawaii-life” (Daniel Dae Kim).
HAPA’s self-entitled debut Cd released in 1993 became the biggest selling Cd by a group or duo in the history of recorded Hawaiian music. The group’s debut Cd changed the tide and thus terminology of music from Hawaii, since it was the first Cd to establish itself outside of the musical category “Hawaiian Music” and be referred to as “World Music” by Billboard Magazine in 1993. All follow up Cd release have debuted in the Top Ten of the Billboard Magazine World Music Chart. The group’s ground breaking music has established them as the most recognized name in Hawaiian Music internationally since their debut release, continuing their 20 year touring tradition of selling out intimate Supper Clubs, Showcase Rooms, Festivals and Performing Art Centers from Tokyo to Sydney to New York.
The blend of their original vocal sound was originated on a wooden picnic bench in the beautiful little beach town of Lahaina on the island of Maui in the early 1980’s. It has travelled far in 30 years, as Rolling Stone Japan recently described them as “Titans of the Genre”. Don Ho predicted in 1993: “What HAPA means and what their message is will touch and inspire millions”.Molly Ringwald
Long before she became known as a Golden Globe-nominated actress, Ringwald was singing. She started performing with her pianist father’s jazz band when she was three and she has never stopped.
“I had quite the musical repertoire,” she recalls with a laugh. “It was pretty much traditional jazz but there was some Bessie Smith and Helen Kane, the original Betty Boop.” Talk with Ringwald for even a short amount of time and it’s clear her grasp of jazz and its history comes from a lifelong study of the form and the great singers who inspired her, including Smith, Ella Fitzgerald, Blossom Dearie and Susannah McCorkle.
“Blossom Dearie was the only one I got to see live. Susannah’s recordings have really influenced me. I think she was really special in her gifts of interpretation and how much humanity she brought to the songs.” However, the time wasn’t right until now. Paul Mazursky cast the then 13-year old in “Tempest,” and for the next few decades, her public focus was on acting, as she starred in such films as “Fresh Horses,” “Betsy’s Wedding,” “King Lear,” “The Pick-Up Artist,” and, of course, her trio of films with John Hughes, “Sixteen Candles,” “The Breakfast Club” and “Pretty In Pink.” “Once I started to act I felt like I had to make that decision,” she says. Plus, during the ‘80s, “I didn’t think there was a place for the music that I was interested in,” she says. “There was no Madeline Peyroux, Diana Krall, Norah Jones… I didn’t feel like anybody was going to listen to the kind of music that I wanted to sing. I thought, I’ll just keep singing with my dad and focus on my acting.”
Ringwald recorded Except Sometimes with Peter Smith, who also produced, on piano, Clayton Cameron on drums, Allen Mezquida on alto saxophone, and Trevor Ware on bass. Together, they put a new spin on such jazz and musical standards as “The Very Thought of You,” “I Get Along Without You Very Well (Except Sometimes),” “I’ll Take Romance,” “Sooner or Later,” and “Where Is Love.” “It was really hard to narrow it down,” she says, of selecting the album’s 10 tracks. “It was basically songs that I felt connected to and songs that I felt we played together well as a band. As much as I love traditional jazz, my real interest is more modern, more from the Great American Song Book.”
– See more at: http://www.iammollyringwald.com/music/#sthash.klnP7ElO.dpuf
Since the runaway success of her 1990 debut album Circle of One (which went Platinum), and the impassioned hit single “Get Here” (the Brenda Russell composition that became an unofficial anthem of the 1991 Gulf War) Oleta Adams has inspired a growing legion of fans in the U.S. and Europe with journeys of the heart via songs that draw deeply from her roots in gospel, while crossing effortlessly into the realms of soul, R&B, urban, and popular music. Her success, nurtured by worldwide tours with Tears for Fears, Phil Collins, Michael Bolton, and Luther Vandross, has been solidified by four Grammy nominations and a seemingly bottomless well of creative energy.
A long-time resident of Kansas City, Kansas, where she has found sanctuary from the turmoil of the entertainment industry, Oleta Adams also remains anchored by her upbringing in the Pacific Northwest. The youngest of three girls and two boys, Oleta spent her formative years in Seattle before traveling over the mountains at age six to Yakima, Washington, an idyllic town of 60,000. She first demonstrated her budding vocal gifts in the Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church where her father served as minister.
By the time Oleta was eleven, she was directing and accompanying four choirs, having already established herself as a piano prodigy. She credits her further musical development in junior high school to Lee Farrell, “the brilliant Julliard-trained teacher and voice coach who changed my life.” School provided another outlet for Oleta Adams: the theatrical stage. In her senior year she broke barriers and traditions as the star of Hello Dolly! admitting that “early on I realized the pleasures of being a big fish in a small pond.”
Turning down the chance to pursue an operatic career as a lyric soprano, along with a scholarship to Pacific Lutheran University, Oleta instead spent a summer in Europe before heading to Los Angeles in the early 1970s. One demo tape and $5,000 later, she discovered that the disco movement had deafened music executives. Oleta’s gospel-flavored voice was not “in.” With the help of Coach Lee Farrell she wound up in Kansas City, where she launched her career playing piano bars, hotel lounges and showrooms.
Oleta quickly became a local institution, with her own billboard and a regular gig at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. Celebrities from every musical genre caught her act, including Eartha Kitt, Cab Calloway, Air Supply, Gino Vanelli, Yes and Billy Joel. Finally serendipity came in the form of the British band Tears for Fears, whose frontmen Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith asked her to appear on their 1989 “The Seeds of Love’ album, video and European tour. Proving that good things come to those who wait, upon her return to the U.S. Oleta signed a record deal for her first solo album in 1991.
With eight CD releases including secular, gospel, and a Christmas album, worldwide acclaim and over two-and-a-half million albums sold. Oleta’s musical odyssey continues – spiritually and creatively. For this consummate artist – composer – producer – musician, many goals remain on the horizon. The first of which is two new songs being released on iTunes from an in the works prayer album Safe and Sound & Long and Lonely Hours.Byron Stripling Trio
With a contagious smile and captivating charm, trumpet virtuoso, BYRON STRIPLING, has ignited audiences internationally. As soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Stripling has performed frequently under the baton of Keith Lockhart, as well as being featured soloist on the PBS television special, “Evening at Pops,” with conductors John Williams and Mr. Lockhart. Currently, Stripling serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra.
Since his Carnegie Hall debut with Skitch Henderson and the New York Pops, STRIPLING has become a pops orchestra favorite throughout the country, soloing with Boston Pops, National Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cincinnati Pops, Seattle Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Detroit Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Toronto Symphony, and Dallas Symphony, to name a few. He has been a featured soloist at the Hollywood Bowl and performs at jazz festivals throughout the world.
An accomplished actor and singer, STRIPLING was chosen, following a world wide search, to star in the lead role of the Broadway bound musical, “Satchmo.” Many will remember his featured cameo performance in the television movie, “The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles,” and his critically acclaimed virtuoso trumpet and riotous comedic performance in the 42nd Street production of “From Second Avenue to Broadway.”
Television viewers have enjoyed his work as soloist on the worldwide telecast of The Grammy Awards. Millions have heard his trumpet and voice on television commercials, TV theme songs including “20/20,” CNN, and soundtracks of favorite movies.
STRIPLING earned his stripes as lead trumpeter and soloist with the Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of Thad Jones and Frank Foster. He has also played and recorded extensively with the bands of Dizzy Gillespie, Woody Herman, Dave Brubeck, Lionel Hampton, Clark Terry, Louis Bellson, and Buck Clayton in addition to The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, The Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, and The GRP All Star Big Band.
STRIPLING enjoys conducting Seminars and Master Classes at colleges, universities, conservatories, and high schools. His informative talks, combined with his incomparable wit and charm, make him a favorite guest speaker to groups of all ages.
STRIPLING was educated at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York and the Interlochen Arts Academy in Interlochen, Michigan. One of his greatest joys is to return, periodically, to Eastman and Interlochen as a special guest lecturer.
A resident of Ohio, STRIPLING lives in the country with his wife, former dancer, writer and poet, Alexis and their beautiful daughters.