Wednesday - December 14, 2005
MELE KALIKIMAKA: Once again islanders thrilled to Jim Nabors’ (and friends) annual Christmas extravaganza at the Hawaii Theatre. This was his ninth year. Here is one of America’s greatest entertainers, a Hawaii resident for over 30 years, again showing his tremendous aloha for his adopted state. And he has never yet taken one penny for his services. What can Hawaii say but bless you, Jim ... USA Today predicts stardom for Lost‘s bad guy Josh Holloway. (Robbed one recent ayem at his Hawaii Kai home). Lost exec producer Carlton Cuse thinks Holloway has big screen stardom coming. Incidentally, Lost is now seen weekly in some 187 countries and territories - the largest viewing audience of any TV series ever in Hawaii’s history ...
While e-mail communicating with Hawaii’s gift to Japan’s radio industry, Kamasami Kong (alias Bob Zix), I asked him what’s happening with islanders in Sashimiland. Here’s some of his scoops (hold da rice): “The past few months visiting islanders included Jake Shimabukuro on tour. He’s become a big star over here. People love him ... Other island visitors included Mayor Mufi Hannemann and the ‘Ambassador of Aloha’ Danny Kaleikini (a big favorite in Japan) visited my radio show. Mufi even sang an island medley from his CD.” ... If they’re from Hawaii, and visiting Japan, Kong gets them on his radio show. Latest was new ukulele whiz, 16-year-old Taimane Gardner. Her album debut is titled Loco Princess. Apparently Don Ho has been grooming her at his show in Waikiki ... Kong keeps quite active promoting Hawaii Night events at Velfarre, Asia’s largest disco. Features lots of Hawaiian music. Wesly Stock-still, a former local boy now stationed in Tokyo with American Airlines, says it’s amazing to see an ocean of young wahines crowd onto the floor to learn just one hula dance. Hawaiiana is hot in Sashimiland ... Others who’ve appeared recently on Kong’s radio show: Hawaii-born supermodel, Brenda Kato and pro surfer/seascape artist Christian Lassen, who’s involved in a new animated feature film ... And that’s Kamasami Kong’s Tokyo report ... Congrats to ukulele craftsmen Fred and Sam Kamaka - getting Duke’s Ho’okahiko Award for their great instruments ... These changing times: Just a few months ago Duke Bainum’s name was all over the place. Now you hardly hear a word about him ... It was a delightful surprise last week at Don Ho’s Island Grill (Aloha Tower Marketplace) as a dozen or so seniors paraded their amateur talent (plus pro guests). The full house was bowled over. Emcee Al Waterson, who hosts these affairs that wife Nancy Bernal produces, is, in my opinion, the best emcee in the biz in this town. His sharp, quick wit handles any glitches.
Add an excellent singing voice, charming personality and you’ve got a master in action ... Hana hou: Tom Moffatt (along with the late Ralph Yempuku and Earl Finch) first presented Neil Sedaka at the old Civic Auditorium back in 1959. Moffatt brings Sedaka back again (46 years later) Dec. 16 and 17 (Hawaii Theatre). Guess nobody ever accused Moffatt of hasty decisions. Anyway, Sedaka is one of the few artists with a two-time hit of the same song - Breaking Up Is Hard To Do ... Always enjoyable: John Hirokawa’s magic at the Beachcomber Hotel ... Lites, camera, action: That great dramatic story about one of the bloodiest battles of all time - Iwo Jima - is finally being filmed. And with Steven Spielberg and Clint Eastwood (producing and directing) you can bet it’ll be a first-class production. Because this South Pacific island has become a sacred burial ground to the Japanese, the movie about the raising of the American flag by victorious Marines in World War II could not be filmed there. So what location replaced the real Iwo Jima? Believe it or not - Iceland. True! It has the same kind of volcanic black beaches as Iwo Jima. And if you wanna see an exact replica (statue) of the historic Iwo Marine flag raising, it’s proudly on view inside the Marine Corps sentry gate in Kaneohe
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