Some of the top names in Hawaiian music will join together on the evening of Monday, March 31 in Honolulu to perform at an event to benefit the legendary slack key musician Rev. Dennis Kamakahi, who was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer earlier this month. The fundraiser will be held at the Willows Restaurant in Mō‘ili‘ili to help defray medical costs.
Kamakahi is one of Hawaiian music’s most celebrated musicians and songwriters. He has penned some of the most well-known and famed modern Hawaiian music compositions, including “Wahine ‘Ilikea,” “Kōke’e,” and “Pua Hone.”
The author of over 500 songs, many of which have become standards in Hawaiian music, Kamakahi has won numerous awards and recognitions for his work, including a number of Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards and three Grammy® awards. Formerly a member of The Sons of Hawaiʻi, Kamakahi has also won a Hawaiʻi Music Award, a Lifetime Achievement Award, and induction into the Hawaiian Music Hall of Fame. In 2013, Kamakahi became the first modern Hawaiian music composer to have his slack key guitar, albums, sheet music, and personal photographs accepted into the Smithsonian National Museum of American History’s permanent collection.
His music has also been featured in numerous feature films, including Disney’s Lilo & Stitch 2 and the Oscar-nominated soundtrack from The Descendants.
Friends and family are hosting a benefit concert, dinner, and silent auction on Kamakahi’s birthday, March 31st at 5:30-9pm at the Willows Restaurant (901 Hausten St.) during a special edition of Pakele Live! Admission to the event is free. The performance will be broadcast live online at: http://new.livestream.com/pakele/events/2851731
“Our dad is a man of tremendous faith. We continue to pray for his full recovery and ask others to do the same. We are daily witnesses to how the kindness and concern of friends, family and fans give him strength in his battle,” said son David in a statement. “We are humbled and endlessly grateful by the outpouring of support from fans around the world. Our family looks forward to sharing dad’s birthday with everyone at this very special event.”
Artists scheduled to perform include: Waipuna (the award-winning Hawaiian music trio featuring Kamakahi’s son David); Kahulanui; Mark Yamanaka; Ledward Kaapana and Mike Kaawa; the Keawe ‘Ohana; Maunalua; Herb Ohta, Jr.; Stephen Inglis; Brother Noland; Danny Carvalho; Kūpaoa; Nā Hoa; Raiatea Helm and Bryan Tolentino; and Nathan Aweau. Ben Gutierrez of Hawaiʻi News Now and Billy V and Mele Apana of Hawaiian 105 KINE will emcee.
The Willows is generously donating 20% of the price of each buffet meal sold during the event to the benefit fund. A silent auction will take place during the concert and will feature items donated by the Corner Kitchen, East Honolulu Clothing Company, KoAloha ʻUkulele, and the Willows, as well as rare collectibles from Kamakahi’s personal music collection. Organizers are still seeking donations for the silent auction. Anyone looking to contribute items can contact event organizers at: firstname.lastname@example.org . Online viewers will be able to submit silent auction bids during the show via the same email address. A final list of silent auction items will be available for viewing on the official website.
NOTE: In order to assure a seat, those planning to attend the benefit should reserve a table as soon as possible by calling the Willows at (808) 952-9200.
The family has set up an official website where family, friends and fans can receive information and make monetary gifts: http://www.teamdenniskamakahi.com/
In addition, a special account has been created at the Bank of Hawaiʻi. Those wishing to make contributions can make a monetary gift to “The Rev. Dennis Kamakahi Fund” at any Bank of Hawai‘i branch.
Donations may also be made by mailing a check payable to “The Rev. Dennis Kamakahi Fund” to:
Bank of Hawaii
PO Box 2900
Honolulu, HI 96846
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