on: Saturday, October 6, 2001
Tiki album captures exotic sounds, party spirit
by Don Kauli'a, Manawa Records
Kauli'a is a Maui-based slack-key stylist featured on his first solo instrumental
CD. Clearly, he has an affinity for ki ho'alu. His name may be unfamiliar
to O'ahu audiences, but those on the Valley Island will know him from several
groups with whom he frequently performs.
is what works for him here. Under the guidance of producer Chance Gardner,
Kauli'a glides over a collection of eight originals and three covers, imparting
a precise and personal stamp.
creatively generates a syncopation of his own on the classic "'Opihi Moe
Moe," mimics the chimes of whales on "Da Whale Song," suggests the chugging
locomotive on "Ka'aahi Kahului," and radiates a spiritual mood on a family
hymn, "E Kolu Mea Nui."
adds a romantic, restful country flavor on "Makaha Moon," and "Bikini,"
written by Kauli'a on a Florida tour, sounds less Hawaiian and more Spanish,
with a reason: The composition honors the vaqueros who introduced the guitar
sample of Don Kauli'a's "Opihi Moe Moe" from the album "Freehand" is available
for downloading as an mp3
DIP WITH DON TIKI," by Don Tiki, Taboo Records 8889
Tiki is Martin Denny for the millennium, purveyors of the musical style
that's come to be known as "exotica," complete with tropical percussion,
mystical bird calls, demure vocals.
also call it "lounge music," and it casts its own special spell.
Tiki is Perry Coma (keyboards), Hai Jung (bass, vocals), Noel Okimoto (mallets,
drums, percussion), Carlinhos de Oliveira (Brazilian percussion), Jim Howard
(flute) and Abe Lagrimas (drums).
music has a flavor and language of its own, a blend of jungle juice with
samba seasoning. It's alternately playful and romantic, haunting and mesmerizing,
toe-tapping and heart-tugging. Co-producer Kit Ebersbach wrote or co-wrote
most of the songs here.
of the charm is trying to figure out who does what, because there's a whole
community of stellar talent contributing roles big and small, from Teresa
Bright to Emmett Yoshioka, Rachel Gonzales to Ben Vegas, Sam Ahia to Lana
Warner, Salaam Tillman to Aaron Aronita. And lots more.