Aloha Ambience

Hawaii Jam Sessions Preserve Cultural Traditions


     Ever wanted to strum your ukulele in public? Head on down to Island Hawaiian Studios for Alameda Kanikapila, a Hawaiian music jam session, held on the fourth Saturday of each month from 6 to 9 p.m. (and it’s free).
     The event, with attendance ranging between 30 to 50 people, is for all ages. Bring your ukulele or guitar and join an evening of music and impromptu open mic and hula. Dinner f
plates featuring Hawaiian favorites and beverages are available for purchase.
     “Kanikapila is a common thing (occurrence, event) in Hawaii, as well as among Hawaiian communities worldwide,” says Lani Cid-Iulio of Island Hawaiian Studios.
     “We have musicians who come to share their original compositions, as well as folks who bring music sheets to share with everyone, which could be a current popular radio tune, or a classic that we haven’t heard or played for awhile. Sharing music sheets is always a big hit because everyone gets to sing and play along and enjoy the music.”
     The event, the brainchild of Leo and Johnelle Baculpo, has been happening once a month for about a year and a half and “it’s still going strong,” says Cid-Iulio. “Musicians love the jam session, non-musicians love the music, camaraderie and ‘aloha ambience,’ and everyone loves the impromptu hula dances.”
     The studio’s primary mission is to preserve the Hawaiian, Tahitian, Samoan and Maori cultures through dance, art and music, and to share these art forms with anyone who wants to learn.
     Want to dip your toe in the waters? Check out the Kanikapila. “Even the most serious musician comes for a night of fun and relaxation without the stress of a perfect performance, and others come just to be there and have a good time,” says Cid-Iulio.

Island Hawaiian Studios, 1122 Lincoln Ave., (510) 910-3087, (click on the Upcoming Events link),

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