Henry Kapono Kaaihue

Melissa Moniz
Wednesday - July 26, 2006
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Henry Kapono Kaaihue
Henry Kapono Kaaihue

Henry Kapono Kaaihue’s music always incorporated his love and appreciation for his Hawaiian heritage, and now his newly released album The Wild Hawaiian brings his admiration for the language and the culture full circle.

“This is the first all-Hawaiian language CD that I have done, and I really feel more connected to this album because it really taught me a lot about myself as a Hawaiian man and as a human being,” says Kapono.

“The concept of this CD is to move the Hawaiian culture forward, and I hope this has opened the door for musicians to be more creative and not be afraid to change.

“I don’t like to get stuck in one place, and if this can get people to think forward and move forward then I have accomplished something.”

About nine years ago Kapono began toying with the idea of making a Hawaiian album, and he has spent much of this past decade perfecting it. How he came to incorporating an alternative, rock, pop and contemporary feel to the album came purely through what he felt was right.

“I didn’t really feel true to myself by just picking Hawaiian songs and singing them, because I really didn’t understand the language even though I’m pure Hawaiian,” says Kapono. “So what I decided is that I had to honor the Hawaiian language and culture by doing research about the language. Then what I did was pick songs that I was familiar with as a kid and put a new twist to it. The feeling of what I got from the lyrics was what I put into it musically.”

For Kapono, this album is his proudest musical accomplishment, and he doesn’t have plans to deviate from this music style anytime soon. “It’s really something important to me and it seems like something that just had to happen,” he adds.

Kapono has a DVD and a Wild Hawaiian TV special coming out this year.

Also happening soon are two stork deliveries scheduled for August. Yes, Kapono and his wife Lezlee are expecting twins (boy and girl) next month.

“We’re both excited and looking forward to it,” says Kapono. “My two girls who are 23 and 28 (Kaleo and Momi) were great girls, and they are great adults now.

“And I’m looking forward to raising two more wonderful kids.”

- Melissa Moniz

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