The CD Release Party for Poina 'Ole 'Ia was held on Novemnber 1, 2012 at the Moana Terrace, Waikiki Beach Marriott Hotel and Spa. The Release Party was held concurrently with the Keawe 'Ohana Show and a celebration of Genoa Keawe's 94thbirthyday.
In addition to hotel and show guests, a number of Hawaiian music entertainers, dancers and dignitaries came to pay tribute to Gary Aiko. Joining in the celebration were Nina Kealiiwahamana, Marlene Sai, Melveen Leed, Kimo Kahoano, Leilani Kupahu-Marino, Raiatea Helm, Jeff Au Hoy, John Berger, Mahi Beamer, Helen Sunbeam Beamer, Gaye Beamer, Marmionette Ka'aihue, Princess Abigail Kawananakoa, Mary Kehau Tiger, Melody Brighter, and Lovena U K West. Hula dancers included Nalani Meyer, Lei White, Pikake Enos, Doc Paperny, Herman Tachera, Kalani Kai, Birdie Wong, Joyce, students of Kehau Tiger, Mika, and others.
The CD Release Party show began as a traditional Keawe Ohana Show with Gary, Pomaika'i Keawe Lyman, Momi Bee Kahawaiola'a and Alan Akaka doing Hawaiian mele in the Genoa Keawe style.
The next portion of the show was presented by Gary Aiko, Kaipo Asing and Alan Akaka (Alan Akaka and The Islanders) doing songs from Gary's new CD. Alan Akaka was the CD's music arranger, and Kaipo and Alan were backup musicians and vocals for the CD. It was during this segment that many of the local Hawaiian entertainers came up individually and collectively to sing with Gary and dance hula.
While Gary stepped aside to autograph copies of his CD, the third set continued with traditional Hawaiian mele and hula using alternate musicians and instruments. Alan Akaka on bass was accompanied by Nikki Hines on ukulele, Kaipo Asing on guitar and Addison Ching on the steel guitar. Surprise guest Raiatea Helm took to the stage and performed several of her favorite mele including Kimo Henderson Hula (Kimo Hula) and Moani Ke Ala Ona Pua Makahikina (Moani Ke 'Ala.)
The show culminated with a birthday celebration for Aunty Genoa Keawe who would have been 94 years young and finished with an 'Alika medley and the traditional Hawaii Aloha.
Sound engineering and mixing were provided by Wade Nakaya, and event photography was done by Colleen Ricci and Kaeokulani Keawe.
Click here to see CD Release Party photos.