Nā Hōkū Hanohano" means "Stars of Distinction" in Hawaiian
Hau’oli Makahiki Hou!!!
Happy New Year! As we ring in 2019 I am grateful for the many highlights from the year that has come to a close. One of the highlights was being nominated for a Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award. The Hoku Awards, are the premier music awards in Hawaii, and are Hawaii's equivalent of the Grammy Awards. Nā Hōkū Hanohano means "Stars of Distinction" in Hawaiian – "hōkū" means "star", "nā" makes it plural, and "hanohano" means "glorious, worthy of praises". Most of the categories are for musicians. Duncan Bamsey has been recognized at the Grammys and also has had three nominations at the Hoku’s for albums he has been a part of, Best New Artist, Best Album and Most Promising Artist of the Year. This year Ranae Keane-Bamsey was nominated for graphics and album design for Bula Akamu’s album Honi Honi. Ranae is most known as an educator and photographer, but for this project she not only shot the photos but also did the graphic design of the 6 page jacket and 10 page insert. This blog post will share some of the images used in the design.
The 41st Na Hoku Hanohano Awards
The 41st Annual Na Hoku Hanohano Awards featured live performances by Jack Johnson, Kimie Miner, Jeff Peterson, Josh Tatofi, Kahulanui, Kamaka Kukona, Kapena, Kawika Kahiapo, Keahi Conjugacion, Keauhou, Ken Makuakane, Lance Takamiya, Larry Dupio, Mailani, Napua Greg, Nathan Aweau, Pat Simmons Jr., Paula Fuga, Stef Mariani, Tsun-Hui Hung, Zach Manzano, Backwards Shaka, Beat-Lele, Deems Tsutakawa, Ekolu, Evan Khay, Greg Sardinha, Halemanu, and Ho’okena.
Bula Akamu created an album titled Honi Honi. His music manager Ash Lee was kind to submit Ranae as a potential candidate for the graphic nomination. For the technical categories such as graphics a committee formed by the Hawai‘i Academy of Recording Arts (HARA) select the six finalists from over 80 this year to be on the final ballot. The accounting firm tabulates the votes for the final ballot and the winner is announced at the award ceremony.
The graphics category was won by a repeat winner Wailani Artates for Napua’s album Makawalu. It was an honor to be a final nominee and to spend the evening with so much amazing talent. The 6 hour televised event of awards and performances are held at the Hawai`i Convention Center Honolulu.
Bula Akamu's sweet and soulful falcetto voice captivates crowds with his mélange of Contemporary and Island music. The songwriter and singer is as dynamic as he is talented. His new album, Honi Honi, transcends Contemporary Island music with an infusion of bilingual lyrics and jazzy reggae beats. The album culminates in a truly artistic and original form to pay tribute to Hawaii’s sacred greeting of affection, the honi. The honi is a Polynesian greeting in which two people greet each other by pressing noses and inhaling at the same time. This is a very honorific as this represents the exchange of ha–the breath of life, and mana–spiritual power between two people. Each track honors Hawaii’s magnificence in an epic representation of music in today’s culture.
Bula's family of musicians and entertainers ignited a love for music that would shape his career and later shape his community, too. He attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts where he studied music education and performance and earned a Master’s degree in Guitar. He returned to Hawaii where he turned his focus on Contemporary and Hawaiian music. Bula has become an island favorite playing regular gigs across Hawaii and on the US mainland.