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 Facing Future (33 1/3 series) by Dan Kois
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Admin
Pupule

USA
4521 Posts

Posted - 07/31/2010 :  6:26:24 PM  Show Profile  Visit Admin's Homepage  Send Admin an AOL message  Send Admin an ICQ Message  Send Admin a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote


Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's Facing Future (33 1/3 series)

I just finished this book, the 70th in Continuum International Publishing's 33 1/3 series of books written about music albums. Notably, it is the only book in the series on the subject of Hawaiian music. The tiny paperback is an easy read. Among the many interesting insights about Iz and the Facing Future album, I liked learning more about Willie Dan who penned White Sandy Beach. An unexpected surprise for me (and other taropatchers): p. 148 mentions this website, and quotes Hikabe's post.

Dan Kois, the author will be in NYC on August 12.

Andy

Bau
Lokahi

USA
226 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2010 :  1:10:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I read the sample pages on that link, so far a great read, thanks for posting it.

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chunky monkey
`Olu`olu

USA
889 Posts

Posted - 09/01/2010 :  11:49:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Be advised IZ fans. You may learn some stuff you might not like.
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wcerto
Ahonui

USA
5052 Posts

Posted - 09/02/2010 :  12:38:26 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I do not think I learned anything that I do not like...well, none of it was a surprise.

I think as more TaroPatchers read this book, it should spark some lively dicussion such as:

-- Are the mele cherished on Facing Future recording different for locals vs. haole mainlanders? The author postulates that what made this recording such a big hit, the Over the Rainbow/Wonderful World medley was liked by mainlanders much more so than Hawaiians; whereas Hawaiians cherished Hawai`i 78.

-- The author postulates that the "Jawaiian" mele, "Hawaiian Sup`pa Man" and "Take Me Home Country Road" were tinny, crappy sounded with synthesized sound and really only liked by locals. He states pretty much that Hawaiian Sup`pa Man was a nothing song. Wow, I disagree about that. I think it was a great way to teach history to those who may not know the story of Maui. He speaks of Country Roads as a mele pana to Makaha and that is why locals took to this mele so well. Funny, I took to it by John Denver as a mele pana for my home state, West Virginia. And that is what he said, that mainlanders didn't care for the way Iz modified it.

-- Milan Bertosa may never work for Jon de Mello again. Yikes. Burned bridges. But then again, the author spoke of things about Jon de Mello, the likes of which I have heard from some who have dealt with him.

After you read, come and wala`au about it.

Me ke aloha
Malama pono,
Wanda
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Mark
Ha`aha`a

USA
1628 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2010 :  09:05:17 AM  Show Profile  Visit Mark's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
He speaks of Country Roads as a mele pana to Makaha and that is why locals took to this mele so well. Funny, I took to it by John Denver as a mele pana for my home state, West Virginia. And that is what he said, that mainlanders didn't care for the way Iz modified it.


I have said it before, but it bears repeating: Iz is covering a much earlier reggae version of the song by the Jamaican singer Toots Hibbert. If you've seen The Harder they Come, you've heard Toots and the Maytals singing Pressure Drop. (Great song, by the way.)

All Iz did was modify Toots' already modified lyrics, from "west Jamaica" to "west Makaha." OK he changed a couple more lines--but he kinda did that to "Over the Rainbow," too, didn't he?

That is not to say that Iz or that his version of "Country Roads" isn't great. But let's give credit where credit is due.

If "Mainlanders" didn't like what Iz did to the song, then why has Toots continued to sell out huge halls and festivals all over the world?

We now return to our regular programming.

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wcerto
Ahonui

USA
5052 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2010 :  09:26:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The author speaks frequently of several issues: how Iz's music was perceived differently in Hawai`i and then on the mainland and also speaks to the issue of a topic that once garnered lots of discussion here on TaroPatch -- "Are Mainland Haole's Kakaroaching the Music of Hawai`i". I mean he didn't flat out say that, but he talked all around it. And he even admitted, well, that even he is writing a book about Facing Future and therefore he is making money off Iz and thus the music of Hawai`i.

I think the book was pretty well written. I am not sure of the veracity of a lot of his statements and attributions, but I will believe that they are true for in places he puts names to statements and in other places leaves the person's name out when someone did not wish to receive attribution.

Only thing, he spelled kaona as kauna.

Me ke aloha
Malama pono,
Wanda
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sm80808
Lokahi

347 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2010 :  6:48:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by wcerto

I do not think I learned anything that I do not like...well, none of it was a surprise.

I think as more TaroPatchers read this book, it should spark some lively dicussion such as:

-- Are the mele cherished on Facing Future recording different for locals vs. haole mainlanders? The author postulates that what made this recording such a big hit, the Over the Rainbow/Wonderful World medley was liked by mainlanders much more so than Hawaiians; whereas Hawaiians cherished Hawai`i 78.


Hawai`i 78 is a great song.

quote:
Originally posted by wcerto


-- The author postulates that the "Jawaiian" mele, "Hawaiian Sup`pa Man" and "Take Me Home Country Road" were tinny, crappy sounded with synthesized sound and really only liked by locals. He states pretty much that Hawaiian Sup`pa Man was a nothing song. Wow, I disagree about that. I think it was a great way to teach history to those who may not know the story of Maui. He speaks of Country Roads as a mele pana to Makaha and that is why locals took to this mele so well. Funny, I took to it by John Denver as a mele pana for my home state, West Virginia. And that is what he said, that mainlanders didn't care for the way Iz modified it.


I have to agree with the author that those songs, to my ears, used crappy synth patches. I don't really care for them either. That is my biggest complaint about the later Iz albums, the crappy synth sounds.
Everytime I hear those "jawaiian/reggae" (we have much bettter examples of reggae in Hawai`i) songs it reminds me of intermediate school and the Hawaiian Style Band.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvIoHEwR19A - IZ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGfsYWkb8kw - Hawaiian Style Band

I have to be honest, Facing Future is not one of my favorite albums. I don't really get it. That said, when I was on the mainland I met a lot of people from diverse backgrounds who really enjoy that album a lot.
I can relate much more with earlier recordings of Iz with the Makaha Sons.

Edited by - sm80808 on 09/03/2010 6:50:10 PM
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Mark
Ha`aha`a

USA
1628 Posts

Posted - 09/04/2010 :  08:51:51 AM  Show Profile  Visit Mark's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Just for fun I opened iTunes to see what I had on there from Iz. For the record... so to speak... I own two CDs--"Facing Future" and "Alone in Iz World."

Well-- only "Alone" is on iTunes--and I've muted the overproduced pop songs.

Sorry, but "Starting All Over Again" just never spoke to me... no matter who sang it.

"Alone in Iz World" is very cool, because it has a number of solo, alternate takes of songs from "Facing Future."

These include Henehene Kou Aka, Panini Puakea, La ‘Elima, and Somewhere Over the Rainbow--without It's a Beautiful World.

Nice to hear how they developed. And even nicer to hear the sheer artistry of this guy.

And, for a very cool take on Hawaii 78 in medley with "in This Life," of all things, check out Walter Keale's CD Kawelona-Ride the Sun.

(Gotta love iTunes, when it finished playing Iz's La ‘Elima it went right into Daquilo Que Eu Sol by the Brazilian jazz singer Ivan Lins. Now that's a funky segue!)


Edited by - Mark on 09/04/2010 08:53:19 AM
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wcerto
Ahonui

USA
5052 Posts

Posted - 09/04/2010 :  09:27:57 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The author of the book postulates that the Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World medley is what attracted mainlanders to Iz and for some, was the introduction to further investigation of Hawaiian music of more traditional nature.

I wholeheartedly agree with this. I am one and think that without having first listened to Iz and then noticed in many of his Hawaiian language songs he sang the same words over and over ..."ha`ina ia mai ana ka puana..." I may have never gone further into investigating the music I have now come to love so much. I always wondered why he sang the same thing in different songs and had to find out about it. It seemed a mystery to me and I am always wanting to solve mysteries. And what a delight I have had over the years from this wonderful music.

If Iz's music has lead anyone to love the music, I think it is wonderful. And that way Iz will live forever, as well.

Me ke aloha
Malama pono,
Wanda
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wcerto
Ahonui

USA
5052 Posts

Posted - 09/10/2010 :  07:34:47 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
One thing that was said in the book is that Skippy did not come to Iz & Marlene's wedding. Here is a video thanks to Kawika96797 of Skippy singing at their wedding:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKez6ldEb6M

Me ke aloha
Malama pono,
Wanda
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Bau
Lokahi

USA
226 Posts

Posted - 09/14/2010 :  02:50:00 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by chunky monkey

Be advised IZ fans. You may learn some stuff you might not like.



what that he was fallible like all of us? that he made mistakes in his life? My impression from the speech he made (that I posted the video of in the other thread) was that he was well aware of this and very humble to the fact and a seeker of redemption. And also speaking out about it. that just makes me admire him more.

Bless you IZ.
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