PR… LIKE MAGIC
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In 2018, Makana spent much of the year using his talents to kokua (help) the people of Hawai’i, from a benefit with Jack Johnson for the flood victims of Kaua’i to concerts to support cancer-stricken legendary Hawaiian musician Uncle Willie K and organizations like the Kaua’i Lifeguards Association and Kua o Ka Lā Hawaiian Charter School (which was covered by the lava flow in Puna). He staged multiple sold-out tribute concerts honoring past Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar greats throughout the islands, and donated his time to perform at the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundations Gala. In the fall, Makana debuted as an actor in the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical South Pacific, playing the role of Lt. Joe Cable to rave reviews. 2018 tour highlights include representing Hawai’i at SXSW, a concert in an underground “cavern” in Tennessee, performances in the UK and his first tour to Russia, where he served as a cultural ambassador for Hawai’i, and performed in venues ranging from world-renowned jazz clubs to schools and universities to forums with many of the mayors and governors of Russia in attendance. While there, Makana filmed the music video “Mourning Armageddon” (out Jan 13) in a recently decommissioned nuclear bunker in Moscow as part of his volunteer work to raise awareness about the present, unchecked nuclear arms race between the US & the Russian Federation. And although Makana didn’t release any new albums in 2018, he recorded over 50 songs for Facebook as part of their Sound Collection offering, a royalty-free music library available to all Facebook & Instagram users for (on-site) video syncing. Find some of Makana’s most exciting new works there! He also signed a music branding deal with the Beachcomber by Outrigger to provide a collection of songs in a new genre- what Makana has termed “Hawaiian Down Tempo”- to be played as the ambient soundtrack for the Beachcomber property beginning in Spring 2019. Also this Spring, Makana will tour the US mainland, sharing his riveting, emotional sound rooted in the indigenous art of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar. This will be Makana’s last solo tour for a few years as he takes time to develop and record a whole new body of music to be released in 2020. – MakanaMusic.com
Photo Credit: Jeff Malin
The African Children’s Choir
Thirty years ago, Ray Barnett was on a humanitarian trip to war-torn Uganda when he gave a small boy a ride from his decimated home to the safety of another village. During the journey, the child did what he knew how to do best – he sang. That simple song of dignity and hope became the catalyst for a program that has changed the lives of thousands of children and reshaped the future of the African continent.
“When I went back to Canada and people were not very interested in Uganda, I remembered this small boy,” Ray explained. “I knew that if only a group of these beautiful children could go to the West, people would be deeply moved and would certainly want to help.” From there the African Children’s Choir was born.
Four quick “s” adjectives come to mind when you first hear Rebecca Angel, making for some nice descriptive alliteration: smooth, soulful, sensual and sultry. Listening to her soulfully produced and exquisitely arranged debut *What We Had*, we can top that off with sexy and unabashedly sentimental as well. The emerging NYC based singer makes every emotionally compelling track an invitation – to dream, to love, to reminisce wistfully about beautiful times gone by which infuse every waking thought of today. With every swaying breeze of her distinctive voice, whether she’s singing romantic lyrics or sharing her artful sense of vocalese, Rebecca tempts us to explore her cool and edgy contemporary update on the deeply exotic vibe of classic artists like Sade and Brazilian greats Bebel Gilberto and Astrud Gilberto.