The Reverend Dennis Kamakahi spent a brief 61 years among us, but in that time he gave us the immortal gift of his music. In the spirit of kōkua (assistance) and ho`omaika`i (to give thanks and blessings), five of his musical protégés will perform a series of fundraising concerts, with all proceeds going directly to the Kamakahi family. All five musicians are Nā Hōkū Hanohano award winners (Hawaiʻi’s Grammy® awards):
David Kamakahi follows in his father’s footsteps with his varied musical pursuits. He is a recording artist, music instructor (ʻukulele), producer, songwriter, and multiple Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award winner for his debut solo album Pa’ani and for his work as part of the popular trio Waipuna. He also recently won a Nā Hōkū Award with Herb Ohta, Jr. in the Instrumental Composition of the Year category for their song “Napili Bay,”
`Ukulele virtuoso Herb Ohta, Jr. is a long-time friend of the family and benefited from Dennis Kamakahi’s mentorship along with that of his father, Ohta-San. Considered one of today’s most prolific ʻukulele masters, he has over 50 recordings to his credit, including ten solo albums and eleven duets. He has won multiple Nā Hōkū Awards as well as Hawaiʻi Music Awards. He is also an accomplished producer, composer, and instructor, having taught such noted musicians as Brittni Paiva and Jake Shimabukuro.
Jon Yamasato, who was trained by Dennis Kamakahi on slack key guitar, began his career as the lead singer for the 5 time Nā Hōkū Award-winning trio Pure Heart (with Lopaka Colon and Jake Shimabukuro). He has recorded and performed throughout the U.S. and Japan with acts such as Herb Ohta, Jr., Na Oiwi, David Kamakahi, Darin Leong, and Justin Young. He has released several solo albums, and has also produced other bands. He is the creator of HI Sessions, a popular live music TV series featuring a variety of Hawaiʻi’s top musicians.
Slack key guitarist Patrick Landeza met and was mentored by Kamakahi in the early 1990s, and continued to tour with him over the next twenty years. He was the first mainland born artist to win a Nā Hōkū Award – in 2013 for his album Slack Key Huakaʻi. A singer-songwriter, he has released 7 solo albums; teaches slack key guitar classes; and over the years has produced mainland concerts featuring many of Hawaiʻi’s top musicians.
“Guitar slinger” Stephen Inglis was a student and friend of Kamakahi. Their album Waimaka Helelei took top honors in the Slack Key Album of the Year category in 2012 – an album that is on permanent display at the Smithsonian Museum of American History. A highly-regarded slack key guitar player and singer-songwriter, Stephen has released 7 albums, is a Grammy® nominee, and has won both Nā Hōkū and Hawaiʻi Music Awards. His music has been featured in film and television
Dennis Kamakahi spoke of performance as giving “life” to songs. With this series of memorial concerts, may those who loved him and his music come together to celebrate and honor the greatest and most prolific composer of Hawaiian music in contemporary times. E ola mau kōna mau mele – let his songs live!
Here is the tour schedule:
Wednesday, July 30 – Seattle, WA (Royal Room, 5000 Rainier Ave South)
Show: 7:30pm, Tix: $20
Tickets available online
Thursday, July 31 – Eugene, OR
(Cozmic Pizza, 199 W 8th)
Show: 8:00pm, Tix: $20
Tickets available at the door or online via Ticket Biscuit
Friday, Aug 1 – Concord, CA
(The Cue, 1835 Colfax St.)
Show: 7:30pm (Doors: 7pm), Tix: $30
Tickets available online or call (510) 423-3051
Saturday, August 2 – Berkeley, CA (Freight and Salvage, 2020 Addison St)
Show: 8:00pm Tix: $37/adv $41/door
Tickets available online or by calling (510) 644-2020
Sunday, August 3 – Felton (Santa Cruz), CA (Don Quixote’s International Music Hall, 6275 Hwy 9)
Show: 2:00pm, Tix: $20
Tickets available online
Sunday, August 3 - Redwood City, CA (Club Fox, 2209 Broadway)
Show: 8:00pm Tix: $25 adv, $30 door (21 and over only)
Tickets available online or by calling (877) 435-9849
Saturday, October 18 – Whittier, CA (Ruth B. Shannon Center, 13406 E. Philadelphia St.)
Show: 8:00pm Cost: $50
Tickets available online or at the Box Office at (562) 907-4203. (Tickets on sale July 10, 2014)
NOTE: If you are unable to attend any of these concerts but would still like to help the Kamakahi family, donations can be made by clicking on the word “DONATE” at the top of the Team Dennis website; by visiting any Bank of Hawai‘i branch and making a monetary gift payable to “The Rev. Dennis Kamakahi Fund”; or by mailing a check payable to “The Rev. Dennis Kamakahi Fund” to:
Bank of Hawaii
PO Box 2900
Honolulu, HI 96846
West Coast Dennis Kamakahi Tribute Tour Featuring David Kamakahi, Herb Ohta, Jr., Jon Yamasato, Stephen Inglis, and Patrick Landeza
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!