Chatham, NJ, (September 5, 2014) – The Masters of Hawaiian Music Tour featuring multiple Grammy award-winning artists George Kahumoku, Jr., Ledward Kaapana and Richard Ho‘opi‘i comes to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 200 Main Street, Chatham, NJ on Tuesday, October 14, 2014. Tickets for the 7:00 pm show are $25 advance purchase/$30 at the door and can be purchased at http://hawaiian.brownpapertickets.com or by calling 800-838-3006. Proceeds will benefit St. Paul’s programs and outreach.

Long-time Chatham resident and member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Andy Wang who has studied Hawaiian slack key guitar with George Kahumoku, Jr. is delighted at the return of Kahumoku and Ho‘opi‘i to Chatham where they performed in 2009. Ledward Kaapana, whose flashy style draws from his family’s roots on the Big Island, makes his first appearance in Chatham on this tour. According to The Seattle Times, “His fleet fingers, leaping phrases and seemingly boundless imagination for improvisation suggest a jazz influence.” Kaapana is well known as a member of the iconic trio Hui ‘Ohana and has worked with Nashville legends Dolly Parton, Chet Atkins, Alison Krauss and Jerry Douglas.

“I am very excited about this evening of authentic Hawaiian music, hula, and storytelling. Each artist is a Hawaiian treasure and music legend – George has won multiple Grammy awards; Led and Uncle Richard are both NEA National Heritage Fellowship Award recipients,” said Andy Wang, organizer of the show.

Hawaiian slack key guitar, kī hō‘alu, is one of the world’s great acoustic guitar traditions. Relatively unknown outside of Hawaii, slack key guitar is often confused with and actually pre-dates the more well known Hawaiian lap steel that developed in the late 1880s or 1890s. Slack key was developed by Hawaiian cowboys who “slacked” the strings of guitars brought by Mexican cowboys hired by King Kamehameha III to teach Hawaiians better ranching methods. Slack key is a finger-picked style, and the tradition continues to evolve from techniques and tunings handed down through the generations.

From the renowned “Slack Key Show®” on Maui that produced 4 Grammy Award-winning CDs, these 3 Masters bring Hawai‘i’s unique folk styles, with origins in the early 19th century Hawaiian paniolo (cowboy) culture, to 21st century stages. They themselves grew up in areas so rural, without electricity, radio, or TV, that they were immersed in Hawaiian music and culture from childhood.

George Kahumoku, Jr., four-time Grammy winner and master slack key guitarist, is known as “Hawai‘i’s Renaissance Man”, is a multiple Na Hōkū Hanohano (Hawaiian Grammy) Award winner, a vocalist, storyteller, songwriter & author, teacher, sculptor, farmer, and chef.

Ledward Kaapana, a master of the slack key guitar and National Heritage Fellow, has been one of Hawaii’s most influential musicians for four decades. His mastery of stringed instruments, his exceptional picking style on slack key guitar and ‘ukulele, and his extraordinary baritone to leo ki`eki`e (falsetto) vocal range, have made him a musical legend and earned him multiple Na Hōkū Awards.

Richard Ho‘opi‘i is a living legend of Hawaiian music and master of the traditional art form of Hawaiian falsetto. For many years he performed with his brother Sol as the Ho‘opi‘i Brothers. He has received the National Endowment for the Arts Folk Heritage Fellowship, America’s highest honor for traditional artists. Charismatic on stage, his lively music, thick white hair and infectious smile make him one of the most recognizable Hawaiian musicians.

For additional information, contact Andy Wang at (973) 400-9264.

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