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Legends: Keola Beamer and Henry Kapono with Moanalani Beamer

American Traditions

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Kapono is one of the great island songwriters of his generation.

Honolulu Star-Advertiser

[Keola Beamer is] The Quintessential Hawaiian Slack-Key Guitar Master

New York Times

Keola Beamer’s contributions to slack-key guitar (kī-hō‘alu) during the 1970s began to spark public interest in the style, launching a statewide revival of the tradition, and his 1978 release, Honolulu City Lights, is the largest-selling recording in the history of Hawaiian music. Today, he is one of Hawaii’s premier singer-songwriters, arrangers, composers, and masters of the Hawaiian slack-key guitar.

Henry Kapono helped forge the sound of ’70s Hawaiian music as part of the wildly popular duo Cecilio & Kapono with Cecilio Rodriguez. With laid-back contemporary rock, they voiced the feelings of an entire generation in Hawaii. Today as a solo artist, Kapono is a Grammy-nominated and award-winning singer and songwriter.

Despite their common history, Beamer and Kapono only performed together for the first time in 2014, when Kapono invited Keola and Moanalani Beamer to be part of “Back in the Day.” This wildly successful show featured the musical greats who shaped Hawaiian music from the ’70s on, part of the “Hawaiian Renaissance”—the seminal movement in Hawaii’s cultural history that brought language, music, hula, art, and all aspects of Hawaiian culture back to their central place in the life of the islands.

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