The finalists for the 2022 Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards have been announced. The ballots will go out May 17th. Best of luck to all of the nominees!
Honolulu, HI - With his beloved Hawaiʻi as the overall theme, Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award winner Kalaʻe Camarillo has written six new songs to be released as a digital EP on Friday, May 27.
The songs on "Child of These Islands" all have personal meaning to Camarillo. "Home, Sweet Home" is about how blessed he feels to have grown up in Hawaii, and is one of the songs he performed live with the Hawaii Symphony Orchestra for their Hapa Series in February 2022. It features an 'oli by his cousin Joshua No'eau Kalima.
"Kōlea," is a song about the journey the Kōlea bird takes from Alaska to Hawaii every year. The mascot of the school where he works (Kapalama Elementary), Camarillo was asked to write an educational song about it to teach to his students. It has a Ka'au Crater Boys influence and features GRAMMY® nominee and multiple Nā Hōkū Award winner Imua Garza on background vocals.
"Old Kīhei," is a duet with the legendary multiple Nā Hōkū Award winner Robi Kahakalau ("Sista Robi"), and has an old hapa haole vibe. It's the place where Camarillo was born and raised and it's also where he and Robi, with whom he frequently performs, first met. It's a place that will always be special to them both.
Now living on Oʻahu, Camarillo was born and raised on Maui and is a third-generation music teacher and professional musician. Born into a family overflowing with rich musical talent, Camarillo couldn't help but follow in their footsteps - it's in his blood. His father Rama, an ʻukulele teacher, taught him to play ʻukulele at age seven, and he later learned to play guitar, bass, and piano. His grandfather, George Camarillo, started the first ʻukulele band in Hawai'i public schools. His great uncle was the late ʻukulele virtuoso Jesse Kalima. His aunty Lehua Kalima is a founding member of the multiple Nā Hōkū Award-winning group Nā Leo Pilimehana. Cousin Lito Arkangel is a multiple Nā Hōkū nominee. Cousin Jesse Gregorio, Jr. plays bass for multiple Nā Hōkū Award winner Ledward Kaapana. Brother Kamaka is also a Nā Hōkū Award winner. And the list goes on...
Camarillo released his debut album "Working Man" in 2017. His second album, "Feel at Home", was released in 2020 and won the Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award for Contemporary Acoustic Album of the Year.
"Child of These Islands" was recorded at Zeo Music studios and was produced and engineered by Imua Garza. Contributors included Camarillo on 'ukulele, acoustic guitar, and vocals; Garza on acoustic & electric guitar, bass, organ, percussion, and background vocals; Layla Camarillo and Kapualei Borge on background vocals; Robi Kahakalau on vocals (Old Kīhei); and Joshua No'eau Kalima, 'oli (Home Sweet Home).
The EP contains six tracks and will be available on all digital outlets on May 27.
Originally from California, Iʻve lived on Oʻahu for a number of years. Music has always been my passion and Iʻm fortunate to be able to work with and support many of Hawaiʻiʻs musicians. For such a tiny speck in the middle of a very large ocean, we have an amazing wealth of talent here!