2019Performer's Bios

     Melveen Leed  "da Tita" - 

    

 

 

 

                                                                                      

 

                                                                                       

                                             Born as Melveen Kuuleipuanani Leed, raised on the island of  Molokai  Hawaii.  After winning the title of "Miss Molokai" she begin singing in the mid-1960s and has released a number of records in the genres of Hawaiian, Country, and Jazz music. How many have heard someone on stage who can sing fluently in 18 languages?  And neither did she go to a conservatory of music nor undergo formal training as a singer.  I guess the best word to describe this talent is "organic."  Melveen has recorded 28 albums.

      She won the Na Hoku Hanohano Award for Best Female Vocalist in 1978, 1979, 1981, 1984 and 1987, performed at Carnegie Hall, NYC on Thursday, May 29, 2014. And was bestowed "Queen of Mele", with the March 24, 2018 Lifetime Achievement Awards.
     As far back as her early childhood she liked the art of music and especially to sing. As she developed her talent for vocalizing, there were many avenues for her to follow. Melveen has been a major Hawaii singer for almost four decades. Her first albums were oriented more to folk and pop, but her blending of Hawaiian and Country brought her to Grand Ole Opry. Presently, her focus often is mainly Hawaiian, both as a solo artist and a leader who easily collaborates with other top musicians. Her web site states that the types of music she performs include "Hawaiian, international, Country, Jazz, Oldies, Spiritual, Holidays, & Rock n' Roll." She is an actress, having had several guest roles on Hawaii Five-O (1968), Behind the Voices (2001) and Dolly (1987) and sang at the Grand Ole Opry. One of the four founding members of the group The Local Divas: vocal quartet Loyal Garner, Carole Kai, Melveen Leed and Nohelani Cypriano. The group made several recordings but broke up after Garner's death several years later.
  Ms. Leed is arguably the best female vocalist in Hawaii and has performed in the Islands, Las Vegas, Japan and on the west coast of California.
     She has been the anchor performer at the International Marketplace in Waikiki every Saturday from 2011 until the Marketplaces's closing in December, 2014. Owner & Founder MELVEEN LEED PRODUCTIONS 1962 – Present 57 yrs


 

    Daniel Ho -

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                         Hawai‘i-born, Los Angeles-based Daniel Ho is a six-time GRAMMY Award winner, fourteen-time GRAMMY Award nominee, six-time Taiwanese Golden Melody Award winner, and recipient of multiple Hawaiian Music awards. He is an ‘ukulele virtuoso, slack key guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, singer-songwriter, producer, audio engineer, and record company owner. He is the designer of the iconic Romero Creations Tiny Tenor ‘ukulele and Ohana Bongolele and Shakerlele. His custom-designed six-string ‘ukulele is on exhibit at the GRAMMY Museum at LA Live. Daniel’s collaborations transcend genres from traditional to contemporary Hawaiian, world music with Mongolian nomads and Taiwanese aboriginal tribes, to classical guitar and ‘ukulele duets with Pepe Romero, to driving rock riffs with electric guitarist Tak Matsumoto (of 80+ million album-selling Japanese rock duo, B’z). Always on the move, Daniel is in infinite pursuit of new musical adventures. Daniel endorses YAMAHA Guitars and Romero Creations ‘ukuleles.

About Daniel Ho
Genres: Hawaiian, Hawaiian Pop, Singer, Songwriter, Acoustic, Slack-Key guitar, Jazz, Adult Contemporary, World Music, Classical, Classical Guitar
Hometown: Honolulu, HI

Daniel Ho is a multi-instrumentalist whose skill, sincerity, and artistry spans six consecutive GRAMMY Awards and 14 GRAMMY nominations, number-one albums on national airplay charts, and top-ten albums on Billboard. His solo 'ukulele CD, "Polani (Pure)," was the first 'ukulele album in history to receive a GRAMMY nomination. On piano the following year, he received a Best Pop Instrumental Album nomination for "E Kahe Malie (Flowing Gently)." Daniel's projects have ranged from an album of classical guitar & 'ukulele duets with Pepe Romero ("Aloha España"), to the GRAMMY nominated album "On A Gentle Island Breeze" (Taiwanese aboriginal melodies set to Hawaiian instrumentation), to numerous albums of original pop, traditional & contemporary Hawaiian, classical, and even instructional material for music composition and 'ukulele.

Kalama Heritage Festival Port of Kalama Featured Headliner, including Jerome Koko (of The Makaha Sons) and Daniel Ho (producer on two of Jerome's recent albums).

 

     Jerome Koko - 

    

 

 

 

 

 

                                    

                                     Featuring the 6-time Grammy Award          winner, producer, and songwriter, DANIEL HO The songs featured on this CD is an “Eclectic Blend of Beautiful Ballads, songs of love, songs of spiritual uplift and, of course, a song of everyone’s favorite eating.” Sixteen-time Hoku Award Winner.  The Mākaha Sons of Niʻihau are one of the most revered bands in Hawaiian music.  Co-founder Jerome Koko continues their legacy.  Pepe Romero’s ‘ukuleles are featured on Jerome’s two albums: Mākaha Sons Memoirs and The Mākaha Sons’ Jerome Koko

Released in October 2015, Jerome Koko's debut CD with Daniel Ho entitled, "Memoirs" served as a tribute and commemoration to the group’s journey, thus far. The alluring harmonies and enchanting melodies of the magical sound that makes the Makaha Sons so memorable is captured in this highly acclaimed recording.
An icon of Hawaiian music continuing the legacy of the Makaha Sons. President, Makaha Sons Inc. Grammy Nominated. Multiple Na Hoku Hanohano Award & Na Hoku Hanohano Lifetime Achievement Award Winner. Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame. (August 2013) The Makaha Sons of Ni'ihau are a Hawaiian musical group formed in 1976 on the island of Oahu by Jerome Koko, Louis "Moon" Kauakahi, Skippy Kamakawiwo'ole, Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, and Sam Gray. 

     “There was this big Hawaiian playing his ‘ukulele on the beach. He told me they’d just moved from Palolo (in Honolulu), and that he and his brother played music. I told him we had a band of our own. The next day, we went over to his house and met the whole family.”

Jerome discovered that Israel’s uncle was Moe Keale—a member of the Sons of Hawai‘i, one of the groups that Jerome and Moon were patterning their own music after. Israel and his older brother, nicknamed Skippy, were going in similar musical directions.

They decided to start playing music together. They named their new group, and the Makaha Sons of Ni‘ihau was born.


     Let the legacy of Hawaiian Music continue…

     Note from Jerome Koko:
In an ever-changing world, there are few constants. One must nurture a capacity for evolution, shifts, and expansion. Over the past forty years, I have had to stand the tests of time and temperaments to stay loyal and true to what has been the cornerstone of my musical career; which is to perpetuate the beautiful stories told through Hawaiian Music.
In 2015, I had the opportunity to collaborate on a solo project entitled, "Makaha Sons Memoirs” with six-time Grammy winner, Daniel Ho. They were songs that the Makaha Sons performed at one time or another, but never recorded.
When I was approached by Daniel to create another album, I enthusiastically agreed. I was ready to stretch my abilities as a vocalist and as a musician to sing songs out of my realm, as long as the lyrics were justly Hawaiian. Every song we selected tugged at my heart and soul. Included on this album are an eclectic blend of beautiful ballads, songs of love, songs of spiritual uplift, and even a song of everyone's favorite pastime: (Spam) eating!
I want to express my inmost gratitude to my family, friends, Daniel and Lydia Ho, MSI team, and fans around the world for all of your love and support. A sincere aloha nui to the Makaha Sons, past and present. 
– Boogs

     In the 49 years that Jerome Koko has been a professional musician, he’s been to a lot of places. None of them is closer to his heart than the part of O‘ahu that he calls home.
A lot of people call it the West Side, others refer to it as Wai‘anae because the Wai‘anae mountain range separates it from the rest of O‘ahu. There are actually several distinct districts—Nanakuli, which is closest to the rest of O‘ahu, then the area that local residents know as Wai‘anae. After that comes Makaha, and eventually Ka‘ena State Park—the end of the road.
With only one road in and out of the west side it is the most isolated area on O‘ahu. This is where Jerome, his younger brother, John, and their friends, Louis “Moon” Kauakahi and Sam Gray were born and raised.
Jerome remembers Nanakuli as a place “where you could leave the doors open.”
“Back in those days, everything was just simple. Everybody had their own life, and if you lived on a [Hawaiian] homestead, you know everybody. It was really mellow. It was nice to be out on the West Side.” Like many Hawaiians in the 1950s Jerome’s family didn’t speak Hawaiian. He was introduced to it in the 4th grade by a teacher who also taught ‘ukulele (he later studied Hawaiian at Leeward Community College). Music became an important part of his life. He and Moon and “two other guys” formed a group when they were in the 10th grade. They won a talent contest.
     Jerome didn’t spend much time at the beach until he and Moon started paddling for the Makaha Canoe Club, but it was at the beach that he met Israel Kamakawiwo‘ole.
“There was this big Hawaiian playing his ‘ukulele on the beach. He told me they’d just moved from Palolo (in Honolulu), and that he and his brother played music. I told him we had a band of our own. The next day, we went over to his house and met the whole family.”
Jerome discovered that Israel’s uncle was Moe Keale—a member of the Sons of Hawai‘i, one of the groups that Jerome and Moon were patterning their own music after. Israel and his older brother, nicknamed Skippy, were going in similar musical directions.
They decided to start playing music together. They named their new group, and the Makaha Sons of Ni‘ihau was born.

 

  

    Bobby Moderow Jr. - 

    

 

 

 

 

 

    

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                             Founding member of the six-time Hawaiian “Grammy”) Na Hoku Hanohano Award-winning group MAUNALUA, BOBBY MODEROW, JR. will be performing as a Headliner at our Festival June 28, 29, 30th.

      Bobby is a renowned slack key guitar and falsetto artist. A member of the prestigious Honolulu Boy Choir from ages 9 to 12, Moderow later became a protégé of the late slack key guitar master Raymond Kane, who was proclaimed "A National Living Treasure by the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts" in 1987, and awarded funding for the apprenticeship program under which Moderow studied.

 

With his Maunalua brothers, Moderow has performed all over the world, including at the inaugural luʻau for President Obama; the 150th anniversary of the Smithsonian; and solo several times at the Grammy® Museum. As part of his desire to give back and to be one of the "Keepers of the [Hawaiian music] Flame" Moderow also teaches slack key - the award-winning artist Makana having been one of his students - and he has taught elementary school children at the Grammy® Museum for the past few years. He is currently teaching at the University of Hawai'i West Campus on O'ahu.

​        Honolulu, HI - Bobby Moderow, Jr.  is releasing his long-awaited debut solo album "Inspired". The album showcases Moderow's prowess as slack key guitarist, singer (including his trademark falsetto), and songwriter. It features a blend of three original songs and covers of favorite, meaningful songs written by others. A Hawaiian cowboy at heart but staying true to his slack key roots, some songs are in Hawaiian and others have a bit of that country flair.
 
"Inspired" begins with a treasured recording of Moderow's mentor, the late renowned slack key master Raymond Kane, who walked onstage during Moderow's 1990 performance at the first-ever Hilo slack key festival and explained to the audience the meaning behind the song he had begun to play. It is the only recording of them together. Moderow apprenticed under Kane, who was proclaimed a National Living Treasure by the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts in 1987, and awarded funding for the apprenticeship program under which Moderow studied. As part of his desire to give back for all the he received under "Uncle Raymond", Moderow in turn teaches others, including groups of elementary school children at the Grammy® Museum for the past few years. He is also currently teaching at the University of Hawai'i West Campus on O'ahu.
 
"Rainbow", one of Moderow's original songs, was inspired by his eldest daughter leaving home for college, but it's also for others who have left Hawai'i to pursue their passions elsewhere. The song's message is that no matter where life leads you, you can always follow your rainbow back home to your roots.
 
In "Music in Heaven" Moderow writes about his passion for music and his musical heroes who have passed on, and how he prays that the music won't stop when he passes. As he was sitting in a coffee shop trying to finish writing the song, struggling to find an ending, a homeless man who was listening told him how much he liked the song and said, "Why don't you just take your guitar up there?" Thus, the closing lyrics were born.

James Taylorʻs "Carolina In My Mind" is Moderow paying homage to the musicians who have given him so much. His great respect for Taylor, whose music helped Moderow realize that itʻs ok to express yourself through music, is the reason for this songʻs inclusion on the album. This
particular song is difficult to play, but the way Taylor plays it is similar to the slack key styling that Moderow loves so much. 

"Inspired" was produced by Moderow, Kamuela Kimokeo, and two-time GRAMMY® Award winner Dave Tucciarone (who also engineered) - all of whom also worked on the vocal and music arrangements. Guest musicians include Kimokeo; Makana (slack key guitar on "Ka'a Ahi Kahului"); Zanuck Lindsey (Telecaster on "Rainbow"); and steel guitarist Denny Hemingson (Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Kenny Rogers) on "Music in Heaven" and "Woke Up With You on my Mind".

This is Bobby Moderow, Jr. Inspired.

 

Having begun his music career as a solo artist, Moderow is currently returning to his roots with the 2019 release of his debut solo album, "Inspired".  Soon to be Released! 

Join Bobby Moderow and Maunalua most Fridays from 4pm - 6pm at Duke's in Waikiki

 

Inspired Bobby Moderow .jpg

Lise Lee -

Talented Lise Lee is going to be joining us from Rancho

Cucamonga California, The Lee Sisters - Lise and Emi Lee,

sisters in real life, have been performing throughout California

and Hawaii since 2015.

Their ukulele adventure took off in earnest in January 2015

when they were invited by Kanile'a Ukulele to play at the

NAMM show in Anaheim California, the world’s largest music

convention. Since then, they've been invited to perform at

dozens of festivals and events throughout Southern California,

including the Heritage of Aloha Festival in Santa Fe Springs California (where Lise was the winner of their 2015 ukulele competition). In Hawaii, they have performed as guests of Bryan Tolentino and Herb Ohta Jr. at the Kani Ka Pila Grille, the Moana Terrace at Marriott Waikiki as guests of Alan Akaka and the Keawe Ohana Show, and most recently at Disney’s Aulani Resort as guests of The Makaha Sons.

They are very proud to be sponsored by Kanile’a and Islander Ukulele ukuleles.

Lise is currently attending the University of California, Riverside (UCR)

The Lee Sisters have recently completed recording two original ukulele pieces for a new EP entitled “California 808”, and are working towards completing their own original album in the coming year.

Finally, you may also be surprised to learn that they have only been playing ukulele for 5 years......and are self taught!

Check out their videos on their YouTube channel "UkuLise", and their Facebook and Instagram pages “The Lee Sisters”(@ TheLeeSistersUkeDuo).

B Aliinuu Poulima- Fire Knife Dancer

B. Aliinu’u - One of the Finest Fire Knife Dancers Exclusively With The Pacific Ohana Foundation & Cultural Learning Center B.Aliinu’u       Formerly Lead Fire Knife Dancer Of The Polynesian Cultural Center
Honolulu Hawaii Laie

 

He Will Be Headlining Our Popular Roasted Pig IMU Ceremony At The 8th Annual Kalama Heritage Festival June 28th, 29th, 30th 2019 By The KalamaTotem Pole

Fire knife dancer Friday, Sat & Sunday ...plus workshops!

HE WILL BE RETURNING IN 2020

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