Maui Arts & Entertainment

Two Time GRAMMY Award Winner, Kalani Pe‘a Nominated Again in 2022

By Wendy Osher
November 24, 2021, 10:27 AM HST
* Updated November 24, 10:59 AM
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PC: @kalanipeamusic / Twitter

Maui’s Kalani Peʻa is celebrating the 2022 GRAMMY nomination of his junior album, “Kau Ka Peʻa,” which is being considered in the Best Regional Roots Music Album category.

He is the only artist from Hawaiʻi among the five nominees announced yesterday. Louisiana is represented in the other four nominees with Cajun and Zydeco music. Others include: “Live In New Orleans!” by Sean Ardoin And Kreole Rock And Soul; “Bloodstains & Teardrops” by Big Chief Monk Boudreaux; “My People” by Cha Wa; and “Corey Ledet Zydeco” by Corey Ledet Zydeco.

This is a back-to-back nomination for Peʻa in this category.

In a social media announcement yesterday, Peʻa said, “I cried so much this morning to hear the news… I’ve only done three albums. I’m so honored to receive the recognition of winning two GRAMMY awards for my debut and sophomore album. I love writing and singing in Hawaiian and in English. I love writing music about people and places I love in Hawaiʻi. I love honoring my elders, honoring my ancestors, my forefathers, and people I meet around the world–people who have shaped my identity.”

“I cried because I cry for our people. I represent our lāhui through Hawaiian language, Hawaiian music, hula and education, story telling, sharing my genealogy, my ʻikena (view), loea (skill, ingenuity, cleverness), ʻike kuʻuna (knowledge/experience) of my kūpuna (ancestors)–my knowledge and wisdom of my kūpuna through education and arts,” said Peʻa.

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Whether teaching music or conducting Hawaiian language music workshops around the world, Peʻa said he loves working with people and the lāhui Hawaiʻi.

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Peʻa also reflected upon the recent passing of Maui’s Henry Aiau Kauka Koa, who composed music with Peʻa and played on the album.

“I cried this morning because I felt Uncle Aiau Koa’s presence. Uncle Aiau was a big part of my musical journey and career… I felt him spiritually here celebrating,” said Peʻa.

Peʻa also expressed gratitude for the wealth of experience from his time in Hawaiian Immersion. “I’m a proud product of the Department of Education and was honored to spend 10 years teaching at Kamehameha Schools as well. So to be able to spread my horizons… I continue to learn. I continue to mentor and get mentored–because I’m human… I’m kanaka. We’re always here to have this growth mindset and learn, and learn from each other,” he said.

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Peʻa said he was going to celebrate with family over a meal at home last night. He gave thanks to his friends at the Recording Academy and his peers in the music industry for voting and “believing in” his craft, passion, and love [for] writing music and singing Hawaiian contemporary soul music.

Peʻa will host a “Wrapped in a Bow” Christmas Concert at the ProArts Playhouse in Kīhei on Saturday, Dec. 4, during a matinee show starting at 3 p.m. Run time is 90-110 minutes with no intermission. Tickets are $60 and are available online.

A portion of proceeds will go to the Alzheimers Association Aloha Chapter to honor his grandmother who suffers from Alzheimers.

Per County guidance, proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test taken within 48 hours of attendance will be required for all persons entering the ProArts facility, including patrons.  (Subject to change.) Free testing is available, to be scheduled up to 10 days in advance.

Peʻa will also present a “Wrapped in a Bow” Christmas Show on Hawaiʻi Island at the Kahilu Theater in Waimea on Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. Price is $65 and $35. Tickets are available online.

“Music is life. Music is medicine. Music is essential,” said Peʻa. “I hope music gets you throughout the year. I love all of you with all my heart”

Wendy Osher
Wendy Osher leads the Maui Now news team. She is also the news voice of parent company, Pacific Media Group, having served more than 20 years as News Director for the company’s six Maui radio stations.
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