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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, April 26, 2001

'Ale'a takes lead among music award finalists

By Wayne Harada
Advertiser Entertainment Editor

Na Hoku Hanohano Awards

Presented by the Hawaiëi Academy of Recording Arts

6 p.m. May 29

Hawai'i Ballroom, Sheraton Waikiki Hotel

(KFVE-TV carries a live telecast from 7 p.m. May 29)

$95 (includes dinner and show)

235-9424 (RSVP accepted from Tuesday)

'Ale'a, a four-member vocal ensemble whose name means "sweet-voiced," leads the 2001 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards final ballot with six nominations.

The group's debut album, "Take Me Home," represents new blood in the Hawai'i Academy of Recording Arts' 24th annual competition, saluting achievement in the recording industry.

'Ale'a — Kala'i Stern, Ryan Gonzo Gonzalez, Kale Hannahs and Chad Takatsugi — earlier won the 1998 Ka Himeni Ana competition, in which it performed in the old Hawaiian style: minus amplification. They're known for a layered Island sound, reminiscent of a younger Makaha Sons, with the harmonic bent of a Ho'okena.

Two other newcomers — Maunalua and Hoku (Hoku Ho, daughter of veteran entertainer Don Ho) — will be challenging more established acts such as Na Leo Pilimehana, Henry Kapono, Robi Kahakalau and Sean Na'auao in 21 categories. Finalists in two additional Hawaiian-language categories, selected by a special panel, plus a Favorite Entertainer of the Year ballot in which the general public will vote, will be announced May 1.

Ballots for HARA members are to be in the mail this weekend.

'Ale'a's six nominations were for Album of the Year, Group of the Year, Most Promising Artist, Island Contemporary Album, Liner Notes and Graphics.

Three other artists each had five nominations:

  • Na Leo ("A Pocketful of Paradise") — Album of the Year, Group of the Year, Island Contemporary Album, Song of the Year ("Saving Forever") and Engineering.
  • Robi Kahakalau ("All I Want") — Album of the Year, Female Vocalist of the Year, Island Contemporary Album, Song of the Year ("All I Want Is You") and Engineering.
  • Sean Na'auao ("Neutralize It") — Album of the year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Island Contemporary Album, Song of the Year ("Kapilinai") and Engineering.

Three earned four nominations:

  • Maunalua ("Maunalua") — Album of the Year, Group of the Year, Most Promising Artist and Hawaiian Album.
  • Hoku ("Hoku") — Female Vocalist of the Year, Contemporary Album, Most Promising Artist and Single of the Year ("Another Dumb Blonde").
  • Henry Kapono ("Evolution of Poi") — Male Vocalist of the Year, Contemporary Album, Song of the Year ("Beautiful Thing") and Single of the Year ("Home in the Islands 2000," with Melveen Leed and Keali'i Reichel).

Wayne Harada, The Advertiser's entertainment editor, is a voting HARA member.

Na Hoku Hanohano nominees

Advertiser Staff

A complete list of Na Hoku Hanohano Award nominees (finalists for three categories will be announced May 1):

Male Vocalist of the Year

KAWAI COCKETT, Hula! Hula! Hula! (Hula)
O'BRIAN ESELU, Maka (Hiki No)
ULUWEHI GUERRERO, In My Heart (Mountain Apple)
HENRY KAPONO, Evolution of Poi (Eclectic)
SEAN NA'AUAO, Neutralize It (Poi Pounder)

Female Vocalist of the Year

ANELAIKALANI for Anelaikalani (Paradise)
TERESA BRIGHT for A Christmas Season's Delight (Row's World)
HOKU for Hoku (Geffen)
ROBI KAHAKALAU for All I Want (Kanai'a)
KU'UIPO KUMUKAHI for E Ku'ulei E Ku'uipo (Ululani)

Group of the Year

'ALE'A, Take Me Home (Poki)
COLON, The Groove Machine (Four Strings)
KAPENA, Electrifying (KDE)
MAUNALUA, Maunalua (Koa)
NA LEO PILIMEHANA, A Pocketful Of Paradise (Na Leo Pilimehana)
TEN FEET, Island Feeling (Mass Appeal Enterprises)

Most Promising Artist(s) of the Year

'ALE'A , Take Me Home (Poki)
HOKU, Another Dumb Blonde (the single) (Geffen)
MAUNALUA, Maunalua (Koa)
O-SHEN, Iron Youth (Cinnamon Red)
TEN FEET, Island Feeling (Mass Appeal)

Contemporary Album of the Year

EVOLUTION OF POI, Henry Kapono (Eclectic)
THE GROOVE MACHINE, Colon (Four Strings)
HOKU, Hoku (Geffen)
ISLAND FEELING, Ten Feet (Mass Appeal)
Y2J, by Jon & Justin (Island Groove)

Hawaiian Album of the Year

E KU'ULEI E KU'UIPO, Ku'uipo Kumukahi (Ululani)
HE HO'OHANOHANO, Pai'ea (Kinonui)
HULA! HULA! HULA!, Kawai Cockett (Hula)
IN MY HEART, Uluwehi Guerrero (Mountain Apple)
MAUNALUA, Maunalua (Koa)

Island Contemporary Album of the Year

ALL I WANT, Robi Kahakalau (Kanai'a)
NEUTRALIZE IT, Sean Na'auao (Poi Pounder)
A POCKETFUL OF PARADISE, Na Leo Pilimehana (Na Leo Pilimehana)
TAKE ME HOME, Ale'a (Poki)

Christmas Album of the Year

A CHRISTMAS SEASON'S DELIGHT, Teresa Bright (Row's World)
HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS, Ho'okena (Ho'omau)
ROAD TO BETHLEHEM, Raji Abuzalaf (Humble Heart Music)

Reggae Album of the Year

GETTING HIGH, Natural Vibrations (Cinnamon Red)
HEAR WE COME, B.E.T. (Galmiche)
IRON YOUTH, O-Shen (Cinnamon Red)
LEAVE SOME LAND, Shilo Pa (Poi Boy)
ONE STEP AT A TIME, Butch Helemano (Vaughn)

Rock Album of the Year

BIG ISLAND ROCK, Joe Battery Band (Joe Battery)
THE CHARM, Sunburn (MRC)
LIQUID, Liquid (liquid)
SAINTS, Beano Shots (Black Hermit Beans)

Religious Album of the Year

NA HIMENI HO'OMAIKA'I I KE AKUA, 'Ane Kanahele & 'ohana ('Aha Punana Leo)
A TRIBUTE TO MY KING, Native Roots (Tropical Jam)
WE CELEBRATE, Chucky Boy Chock (Dream Tech)
WHO IS TO COME, Jan Shima (7th Sign Music)

Jazz Album of the Year

HERB OHTA MEETS PETE JOLLY, Herb Ohta & Pete Jolly (M & H Hawai`i)
LIVE! VOLUME II, Olliephonics Horns (Duck Pond)
SAX FOR CHRISTMAS, Michael Paulo (Noteworthy)
SAX HAWAIIAN STYLE, Gordon Samuelson (Samuelsongs)
THIRD DEGREE, Third Degree (Kings Street)
TO THE GOOD LIFE!, George Tavoularis (Crystal Castle)

Instrumental Album of the Year

BEYOND BLUE, Daniel Ho (Daniel Ho Creations)
BLACK SAND, Ledward Ka'apana (Dancing Cat)
FLYING, Kohala (Palm)
MAUI MORNING, Riley Lee & Jeff Peterson (Hula Records International)
TASTE THE MUSIC, Daniel Ho (Daniel Ho Creations)

Anthology of the Year
(Producer's award — best album of previously released material).

THE BEST OF KALEO O KALANI VOLUME 2, Kaleo O Kalani (Ku'umele) Ku'umele Productions, producer
THE BEST OF THE BROTHERS CAZIMERO, VOLUME III, the Brothers Cazimero (Mountain Apple), Jon de Mello, producer
BILLY GONSALVES & THE PARADISE SERENADERS, Billy Gonsalves & The Paradise Serenaders (Hana Ola), Harry B. Soria, Jr., producer
COLLECTION, Hapa (Mountain Apple) Hapa and Jon de Mello, producers
LEGENDS OF FALSETTO, Various artists (Hana Ola) Harry B. Soria, Jr., producer
THE UNCLE IN ME, Willie K (Mountain Apple) Willie K and Jon de Mello, producers

Compilation Album of the Year
(Producer's award — best performance of newly released material by a minimum of three distinct artists)

ALOHA FESTIVALS HAWAIIAN FALSETTO CONTEST WINNERS, various artists (Hula) William Baba Alimoot, Steve Kramer and Donald P. Flip McDiarmid III, producers
ISLAND WARRIORS, various artists (Hobo House On The Hill) Ronnie Esteban, Lawrence and Roni Yurong producers
MELE HULA VOLUME 2, various artists (M & H Hawai'i) Michiko Urata and Kazue Kurebayashi, producers
NA KEIKI O KAMEHAMEHA, various artists (Mountain Apple) Marsha Bolson, producer
PRIDE OF THE ISLANDS III, various artists (KCCN) David Daniels, Mike Kelly and Rhoda Kihikihi, producers

Single of the Year

"Another Dumb Blonde" Hoku (Geffen)
"Home In The Islands 2000," Henry Kapono, Melveen Leed & Keali'i Reichel (Eclectic)
"Kuahiwi Nani (The Haleakala Hula)," Darlene Ahuna (Hula)
"Mama ... For Giving Me Love," Pomai & Loeka (L&L/Star)
"Raised On Rice," Ellsworth Simeona (Kinonui)

Song of the Year
(Composer's award: best achievement in creating a first-time recorded song)

ALL I WANT IS YOU, Dave Tucciarone from All I Want, by Robi Kahakalau (Kanai'a)
BEAUTIFUL THING, Henry Kapono from Evolution of Poi, Henry Kapono (Eclectic)
IN MY HEART, Uluwehi Guerrero from In My Heart, by Uluwehi Guerrero (Mountain Apple)
KAPILINA, Frank Hewett from Neutralize It, by Sean Na'auao (Poi Pounder)
SAVING FOREVER, Lehua Kalima from A Pocketful of Paradise, by Na Leo Pilimehana (Na Leo Pilimehana)

Album of the Year

ALL I WANT, Robi Kahakalau (Kanai'a), Dave Tucciarone and Robi Kahakalau, producers
MAUNALUA, Maunalua (Koa), Maunalua and Dave Tucciarone, producers
NEUTRALIZE IT, Sean Na'auao (Poi Pounder), Sean Na'auao and Poi Pounder Records, producers
A POCKETFUL OF PARADISE, Na Leo Pilimehana (Na Leo Pilimehana), Na Leo Pilimehana and Kenneth Makuakane, producers
TAKE ME HOME, 'Ale'a (Poki), Kata Maduli, producer


NELSON MAKUA, Hawaiian Slack Key Christmas, various artists (Dancing Cat)
BRIAN ONAGA, Take Me Home, 'Ale'a (Poki)
PRESTON TERADA, The Groove Machine, Col÷n (Four Strings)
PRESTON TERADA, Ho'oulu I Ka Na'auao, Sonny Ching (Four Strings)
PRESTON TERADA, Paddle To The Rising Sun, Elua Kane (Hula)


MILAN BERTOSA and HOWARD WOLEN, A Pocketful of Paradise, Na Leo Pilimehana (Na Leo Pilimehana)
WENDELL CHING, SEAN NA'AUAO and MILAN BERTOSA, Neutralize It, Sean Na'auao (Poi Pounder)
LESTER GANTAN, Native Blend, Native Blend (Flyin' Hawaiian)
RICK SMITH, Furthermore, Chilum (Moon Surfer)
DAVE TUCCIARONE, All I Want, Robi Kahakalau (Kana'ia)

Liner Notes

SONNY CHING and NOHEA KAWAHAKUI, Ho'oulu I Ka Na'auao, Sonny Ching (Four Strings)
NEIL J. HANNAHS, Take Me Home, 'Ale'a (Poki)
JAY JUNKER, Hui Aloha, Hui Aloha (Dancing Cat)
BILLY ROSE, Club Nisei, Various Artists (Hana Ola)
HARRY B. SORIA, JR., Billy Gonsalves & The Paradise Serenaders, Billy Gonsalves & The Paradise Serenaders (Hana Ola)

Correction: Sonny Ching and Nohea Kawahakui are nominees in the upcoming Na Hoku Hanohano Awards for their liner notes for the album "Ho'oulu I Ka Na'auao." Kawahakui's name was misspelled in a list of nominees in Thursday's Advertiser because of a source error.