Families and relationships, it’s the way of life in Hawaii. While life may take us on separates journeys, we are fortunate enough to see our paths cross from time to time. Years and distance may separate us, but it makes rediscovering one another all the more special, as we celebrate the definition of what we call ‘Ohana.
The 1960’s are what Hawaiians often reflect on as the “Golden Age” of Waikiki. Performers graced the showrooms of the legendary hotels across Waikiki’s famous beach. Locals and tourists alike would flock to see the likes of Kui Lee, Don Ho, Carole Kai, Al Harrington and many more. One of the steady acts was none other than the ukulele legend, Ohta San, the man often credited for the surge of ukulele’s popularity worldwide. For a few years, our father, Alvin, was at this side as his bassist and vocalist at the tail end of Waikiki’s heyday. Though a lifetime ago, dad would often reminisce about those times with Ohta San allowing us to relive some of those moments in time.
Fast forward thirty years later and we find ourselves reconnecting with Ohta San through his son, Herb Ohta Jr. Our brief contact as children had no indication of how endearing our two families would become. We work, laugh, cry and share meals with one another in the true sense of family. Present throughout our bond is the ukulele. Uncle Herb kindled the flame on that fateful day he hired our father and it continues to burn as we, together with Herb, Jr., journey into the future.
“’Ukulele Legacy” is a rare collection of Ohta-San and Herb, Jr., playing together, on an all original soundtrack. “’Ukulele Legacy” brings together two styles and generations, allowing us to share in this long anticipated father and son’s labor of love.