Hawaii artists collaborate for Japan

Hawaii recording stars Amy Hanaiali’i Gilliom and Henry Kapono recently collaborated to write a song, then rallied a slew of other Hawaii artists to record the song as a benefit to Japan.

The song, “Together Hawai’i: A Song For Japan,” is like Hawaii’s version of “We are the World,” raising money for Japan’s earthquake and tsunami victims. Hanaiali’i spearheaded the effort, enlisting her longtime friend Kapono to help her pen the lyrics. Within a week’s time, Paliku Theatre donated space to record, and Milan Bertosa and Shawn Pimental came on board to produce the record.

“Japan and her people have been so supportive of my career and music, [that] when this tragedy took place, I knew I had to give back in some way,” Hanaiali’i said in a statement. “I know a song will not build a home, or bring back a loved one, but I hope it calms their souls and to remind them that their brothers and sisters in Hawaii are always here to help.”

OC16-TV came to document the collaboration, which brought together artists Raiatea Helm, Steve Jones, Hilo Ka‘aihue, Robi Kahakalau, Lloyd Kawakami, ManoaDNA, Danny Kennedy, Mailani, Chino Montero and Sean Na’auao. The song is rounded out by a spoken dedication to Japan’s people by slam poet Kealoha.

“Japan continues to be in our thoughts, and we hope we can send them positive vibes, prayers and our mana (Hawaiian for spiritual strength),” Kapono added. “We have placed all of this into our song and we hope they feel our aloha.”

All of the proceeds of the record will be donated to the Hawaii Red Cross, Japanese Earthquake and Pacific Tsunami Disaster Relief Fund. The purchase and download of the song is available for $.99, and the accompanying music video will be available for $1.99. To preview, purchase and download the song or music video visit mountainapplecompany.com.