Edit ModuleShow Tags

Music Review

Ka 'Upu Aloha, Aaron J. Sala, Hula Records


Published:

If you're a Hawaiian music fan, you've probably already heard Aaron J. Sala ... in the background, at least. He's lent his piano chops to albums by Na Palapalai and Raiatea Helm.

On Ka 'Upu Aloha, Sala steps into the spotlight with a collection of covers that capably runs the gamut from a new composition by Kaumakaiwa Kanaka'ole to an old chestnut by Rogers and Hart.

The album starts on a high note. "Hale a Kala," composed by Randie Kamuela Fong, features a gorgeous, bright melody, and Sala gives the track vigor and complexity.

Much of the rest of Ka 'Upu Aloha is quieter, piano-centered music. Your enjoyment of the album will depend on your tolerance for Sala's adult contemporary tendencies. He transforms the usually peppy "He 'Ono," for example, into a loungy stroll, but it's worth hanging around to hear Sala reinstate the song's original second chorus, which adds new depth and meaning. Turns out it's not really about tasty food.

The album's not all downtempo–Sala's take on Johnny Almeida's classic "'A 'Oia!" is a sparky romp, and the ipu heke percussion on "Ehuehu Mai Nei 'o Manoa" offers a perfect counterpoint to the song's strong chorus of male voices.

BOTTOM LINE:
An impressive and varied debut–Sala deserves his new position front and center.

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Subscribe to Honolulu

Honolulu Magazine February 2018
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Trending

 

Here’s How Hawai‘i Responded on Social Media to the False Ballistic Missile Alert

Ward Warehouse

A false alarm caused by human error sent the entire state of Hawai‘i into panic mode.

 

Twitter is Going Nuts Over Barack Obama’s Backward Hat and Rubbah Slippahs

Obama

Vacation mode: Activate.

 

6 Things You Need to Know About Rat Lungworm Disease Before You Eat a Salad

Rat lungworm disease

Everyone’s talking about the recent disease outbreak affecting the Islands. Find out what it is, where it comes from and how you can prevent it.

 

Here’s How to Survive a Possible North Korea Nuclear Strike in Hawai‘i

North Korea

What you need to do according to the Hawai‘i State Department of Defense.

 


20 Great O‘ahu Hikes

Explore 20 great adventures that offer beautiful vistas, waterfalls and more.

 

 

Edit ModuleShow Tags