Before I say anything, just go here:
then go here:
Currently sitting at a closed Starbucks kiosk inside a 24 hour Safeway on Pi’ikoi. ANOTHER great location for endless access to drinks and snacks and WiFi! Just came from The Doris Duke Theatre at the Honolulu Museum of Art, spelt with an ‘re’ instead of an ‘er’. I asked google about the difference between ‘theatre’ vs. ‘theater’ and basically came to the conclusion that English is just dumb. I like to think theatre refers to the classy venues, where classy performances take place, with acts, intermissions, and “encore’s” yelled at a reasonable volume. Theaters are where I go to step on stale popcorn and spend a couple hours angered at obnoxious kids and their parents while The Hunger Games Par Deux plays in the background (I still don’t know what happened in that movie). I just went from inspired to red hot. Back to inspired.
Doris Duke Theatre was the stage for my friend’s concert, which was stacked with amazing musicians and backup singers that would sing most people under the table in a heartbeat. On top of that, as I looked into the audience I couldn’t help but notice that you could have made like 3 super bands out of the musicians in attendance. I am still star-struck by some of the people I get to say hello to. The main act tonight was Izik. I spend about 95% of the time listening to him with a ‘thizz face’ on, just repeating over and over in my head, “naaaaaasssstyyyy… ewww whaaaat?! Naaaaaaaasty…” I’m trying to remember the first time I heard Izik sing… It was probably around the time that he and his band won the Mai Tai rumble a few years ago. That was around the time me and the Smooth Remedy boys were getting all up in that Hawaii wedding scene and meeting a lot of cool musicians in the local music community here. I just remember thinking, this guy’s vocals are insane. You know when you hear or see some mega-talented person doing what you want to be doing but then say, “I quit,” because he or she is just on some next level shit? Fun fact, my bandmate Kama texted me during the show and told me to let him know how it went. I replied “that was some next level shit.”
I could spend this whole post fan girl-ing over his vocals and the show, but the reason I wanted to sit in this Safeway and write was because of something Izik said between songs tonight. He was explaining that a few years ago, he was dealing with the loss of his Grandmother. Izik was also waiting tables at a restaurant and had an exceptionally shitty hard day, and out of that place of being down and defeated came a song, and it healed him when he needed it. I don’t know exactly what he said word for word, but the gist of it was that we all need to find our ways to heal our “naturally damaged” selves, and most importantly, figure out how we can heal others. He said, “for me and Jim (Jim Cobb, a super talented guitarist playing guitar for him tonight), it’s music. For my sister and my mom, it’s through education and teaching others.” This made me flash back to a conversation I had with my first boss at my last engineering job. When I announced my plans to resign, he made it a point to take me to lunch that last week I was there. This guy is very old school, conservative, set in his ways, and says a lot of things I don’t agree with. But what I told him that Wednesday, at Mexico’s on School Street, was as follows:
Something like, “I remember one of the first things you said to me when I started working was to remember that through all the stress and late nights, we’re doing this job to help people. Not just the clients, but doing quality work helps the company, which helps our coworkers and their families. I totally get that we’re helping people, and that’s great… But I just have this deep feeling that I can help people more through music than I ever could through engineering…”
I said that to him. I didn’t know how he was going to receive that, but he received it. Luckily I’ve played music at like two of his kid’s grad parties over the years, and also he’s a fan of music. I don’t remember what he said after that, but I think he accepted it, and wished me success.
When Izik talked about healing others, I instantly was reminded why I left my job in the first place. Call it coincidence or just lucky timing, but recently there have been little events happening in my life to remind me of the “why” and also to write it down where I can see it and remember it. So in the spirit of that. I’ll write it down here.
SHANE, THIS MUSIC ISN’T FOR YOU, IT’S FOR THEM
Okay, that was short enough to remember.
Again, go check out Izik, and also his talented friends that were backup singing tonight, Keilana Mokulehua and DeAndre Brackensick. I met Keilana at a singing competition a few years ago, which she won for the girl’s side. I was super impressed back then, but it’s like she went 1000% in on practice for that whole time after we met, and if angels do exist, I imagine they sound like her. It’s like soft and sweet, calming and motherly, but then powerful and soulful at the same time. If I have my thizz face on 95% of the time for Izik, I got it on like 99% of the time for DeAndre. His legs must be tired… from doing all those vocal runs. My brain can’t even process most of the stuff he sings. They did a short acoustic set between Izik’s album music, sharing a song each of their own creation. The song DeAndre shared tonight harmonizing with Keilana and Izik gave me chicken skin. “Looooooooooove, was the excuse for us, when we both know that it was not enough…” I’m buying that one on itunes when it comes out for sure. Keilana’s song, Ascendant, was about the mask we put on to act like certain things aren’t bothering us inside. As they both spoke about their songs, I was reminded that we’re all alike, we’re all nervous to be vulnerable and share that side of us with strangers, even friends!
OH!!! So I found out tonight that there’s going to be a show at the Blue Note on September 25th with my buddy Tim Rose, but also Izik, Keilana, and DeAndre. It’s going to be “Nashville writer’s round” style as he put it. Just some microphones, some bar stools, some originals, and some stories about those songs. I’m so pumped for that. My best friend Aaron, who lived in Nashville for like almost 4 years, told me about writer’s rounds there, and I’ve wanted to see one ever since. Especially with this group up on stage. August 25th at The Blue Note.
Well I promised Tim I’d go read this book tonight that he highly recommended. So I’m going to get to that. I’m so inspired by all of these people popping into my life over the last several years in the world of music. One of the main reasons I decided not to move to Washington this year was because I’d be a damn fool to go there when they’re all here. Thanks for inspiring me old friends and new friends. So excited for the future for all of us. Congratulations Izik on an amazing show! Sorry if I got any quotes wrong or whatever, not like anyone reads this 🙂
– Fan girl