A few of the original songs on the album include “Honu,” which was inspired by the sight of forty-plus honu (Hawaiian sea turtles) feeding on limu at the reef shoreline during Kahiapo’s stay at a beach house near Laniakea, also known as Turtle Beach. “Kealohi” was written for a small peninsula known as He’eia State Park, an ancient sacred site on the windward side of O’ahu. After composing “Moon Rising,” Kahiapo wanted to use a portion of it on a documentary video he co-produced, and while looking through his home for a nose flute he was hoping to use to set the mood, he found one that happened to be in the key in which he wrote the song.
Although the winner of numerous awards (including three Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards in 2007 with his former group Kaukahi for their debut album "Life in These Islands"; he was featured on the GRAMMY® award winning album "Masters of Hawaiian Slack Key"; and he was the recipient of the “Slack Key Artist of the Year” award), Kahiapo has never before released an album that highlights his much-sought-after mastery of slack key guitar. His passion for the art began as a child, when he was influenced by world-renowned slack key master Gabby "Pops" Pahinui, who frequented the casual “garage parties” held at the Kahiapo family home. He continued to perfect his skills, broke into the professional music scene at age 17, and never looked back. To date he has contributed his talents to over 80 recording projects and has collaborated and performed with artists from the internationally acclaimed Jack Johnson to fellow GRAMMY® Award winner Cyril Pahinui; the Sunday Mānoa’s Palani Vaughan, and many, many more. He is a fixture at slack key festivals all over the U.S. and abroad, and the demand for both his slack key and vocal talents has expanded to the recording of numerous jingles and theme songs for radio and television ads.
Hoʻomaluhia was produced by Kahiapo and recorded over a period of ten years, beginning at the same time he was in the studio recording the award-winning Kaukahi album, “Life in These Islands”. The album was recorded at Jack Johnson’s Mango Tree Studio, Rhythm and Roots Recording Studio, and Rendezvous Recording Studio. It was engineered by Chris Lau and Pierre Grill.
The CD is currently available at Me Ke Aloha, and digitally online at CD Baby. Wider release through other online and retail outlets will follow.