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Musicians to pay tribute to Hawaiian music legend Dennis Kamakahi

By Staff | Aug 7, 2014

The show will pay tribute to Hawaiian slack key master and songwriter Rev. Dennis David Kamakahi. PHOTO COURTESY OF BRUCE FORRESTER.

NAPILI – George Kahumoku Jr., David Kamakahi, Kevin Brown, Richard Ho’opi’i, Da Ukulele Boyz, Sterling Seaton and Wainani Kealoha will pay tribute to Dennis Kamakahi, one of Hawaii’s greatest slack key masters, on Thursday, Aug. 14, at 7:30 p.m. at Napili Kai Beach Resort.

Presenting Dennis’ songs will be his talented son, David Kamakahi, who is just completing a Mainland tribute tour. David is the featured ukulele player and vocalist for the Na Hoku Hanohano Award-winning trio Waipuna.

Also presenting songs will be Maui’s traditional style slack key master Kevin Brown and ukulele and falsetto master Ho’opi’i, who often toured the Mainland with Dennis and Kahumoku on the Masters of Slack Key Tour.David will also be the featured artist at the Slack Key Show the previous evening, Wednesday, Aug. 13, at 7:30 p.m.

Rev. Dennis Kamakahi lost his battle with cancer in April. Hawaii, and the world, lost one of the greatest living Hawaiian songwriters and slack key masters.

He performed with Kahumoku and the masters many times at the Slack Key Show here on Maui, on tours, at concerts and on music recordings. Kahumoku and the Slack Key Show ‘ohana want to honor Dennis and share his legacy and music as they pay tribute to their dear friend.

Proceeds from this tribute concert will benefit Team Kamakahi and Kamakahi’s family.

Dennis sang and played traditional and original Hawaiian songs using multiple open slack key tunings, sometimes adding a country western edge. His performances included moving stories that told the meaning of the Hawaiian language song or the inspiration for writing it.

He was honored at the age of 19 to join Eddie Kamae’s Sons of Hawaii, replacing the legendary Gabby Pahinui. It was his tenure with the Sons of Hawaii (1974-95) that led him to become one of the most prolific Hawaiian language songwriters. Many of his songs are now Hawaiian standards, including “Pua Hone,” “Wahine ‘Ilikea,” and “Koke’e.”

He was a multiple Grammy and Na Hoku Hanohano Award winner. In 2009, Dennis was awarded the Hawaii Academy of Recording Arts’ prestigious Na Hoku Hanohano Lifetime Achievement Award.

Dennis left an amazing legacy for the world. He composed over 500 Hawaiian songs – many that have become famous Hawaiian standards. He was also the first modern Hawaiian music composer to have his six-string slack key guitar accepted into the Smithsonian National Museum of American History’s permanent collection.

Make your reservations now, as seating is limited. Get tickets online at www.SlackKeyShow.com or call 669-3858. A pre-show dinner at the Sea House with show package is also available.