To celebrate the United Nations' International Day of Peace, a festival will take place from 1 p.m. to sunset Sunday at the Keopuolani Park amphitheater (the old zoo) across from War Memorial Stadium.
This free Peace Day event will feature musicians Aunty Emma Veary, Uncle Richard Ho'opi'i, Lei'ohu Ryder, Marty Dread, and the Maui Taiko Drummers, and speakers including Mayor Charmaine Tavares and Ram Dass.
The United Nations' International Day of Peace is a global holiday when individuals, communities and nations highlight efforts to end conflict and promote peace.
A weeklong song/chant for peace will begin at the Maui festival, at 3:36 p.m., with 336 people each chanting or singing for one-half hour through Sunday, culminating with a free closing ceremony at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center's Castle Theater.
To register to participate in the chant for peace check on the Web at unityonmaui.com or call 283-0645.
The Sunday event includes food, keiki activities and community information tables.
In December, Maui's reggae ambassador Marty Dread will travel to China as part of a first-ever reggae tour of the world's most populous nation. Joining Jamaican stars Third World, Marty will travel with the "One World Business and Cultural Exchange," performing in the cities of Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Shanghai.
"It's a cultural exchange that's trying to break reggae music in China," Marty explains. "They're taking dancers and singers and even athletes."
Representing Hawaii, Marty is hoping "to try and get distribution. A lot of music is happening there now. Reggae took off in Japan and no one's tried to break it in China. The beat will obviously catch them."
Musicians performing in China now face daunting restrictions following Icelandic singer Bjork's call for Tibetan freedom at a Shanghai concert in April.
"I have to submit a DVD of exactly what I'm going to play and I can't change it," Marty reports. Bob Marley's liberation classic "Get Up, Stand Up" probably wouldn't go over so well.
"My set list will be all originals," he continues. "I will do 'Pray for Them,' which I did with Pato Banton, and 'United We Stand,' which I did at the White House."
Renowned reggae engineer Scientist will record the China shows and release a live DVD/CD.
Next month, Marty will release a new CD, "Still Playing Reggae," which features two duets with Willie Nelson - a cool Mad Professor remix of "Peaceful Solution" and "I'm a Worried Man." It also includes tunes with U.K. reggae artist Tippa Irie, and three other tracks with the Mad Professor.
Talk about surreal - a Jamaican cuisine restaurant opened in the Chinese city of Hangzhou in July. The Chinese government's Red Army Band played reggae music at the event.
Former Argentina Turner Band keyboardist Malcolm Rockwell recently received an award for his monumental achievement of cataloging all Hawaiian music released on 78-rpm records. Before the advent of CDs, vinyl albums and 45s, songs were released on 78-rpm records, which typically ran for a maximum of three and a half minutes.
An avid collector of 78s, Rockwell released his definitive discography "Hawaiian & Hawaiian Guitar Records 1891-1960" last year as a 1,400-page reference work, listing more than 17,000 songs, released on CD-ROM. It was much easier, cheaper and more efficient to produce the work as a CD-ROM.
The Association for Recorded Sound Collections, an organization dedicated to the preservation and study of sound recordings, honored Rockwell with the 2008 ARSC award for Best Discography.
"I was very pleased at getting this award," says Malcolm. "It's the acknowledgement of my peers that's most exciting."
So what inspired this Herculean archival mission?
"I had about 4,000 78-rpm records and I couldn't find anything, so I decided to catalogue my collection, and out of that came the Hawaiian discography," he explains. "I had some Hawaiian stuff and I decided to concentrate on it. I had gone to Tennessee to visit a blues collector friend, Richard Hite, who was the brother of Bob Hite from Canned Heat, and he sold me a bunch of 78s. He said a Hawaiian discography had never been done. So I started working on it in 1992, and it just kind of grew. Over the years it became something I did a little bit every day, and it became a 1,400-page book."
Working from his Kula home, Malcolm scanned the globe for material.
"The discography covers just about every country in the world that has anything to do with Hawaiian music," he continues. "If it said 'Hawaii,' 'hula' or 'Waikiki,' I went after them. I broke them down into eight categories, going from mele all the way to hapa-haole and spoken word. It covers everything that was recorded from 1891 with King Kalakaua's deathbed speech recorded on an Edison cylinder, all the way up to 1960 when 78-rpm records were phased out of production."
His passion for music was instilled by his father who ran a major entertainment booking agency from the 1930s to the '50s.
"People would send him all these demo records. He wasn't interested in them but I was," Malcolm recalls. "Later on, when I moved to San Francisco in 1965, I found a plethora of blues 78s in thrift stores all over the Bay Area. I started with rock 'n' roll and blues records, and it wasn't much of a leap to move to Hawaiian music after I came here."
Some of the earliest recordings he lists dating from about 1904 are of the Royal Hawaiian Band and Madame Alapai. "When the steel guitar came in, it pretty much took over, and there were a lot of instrumentals," he says. "The most prolific steel guitarist recording from around 1913 to 1933 was Frank Ferreira, who recorded mostly instrumentals."
Among some of the more unusual recordings he includes is a version of "Aloha O'e" from the 1930s sung in French on a French label.
"I also have a version of 'Aloha 'Oe' by an Austrian oom-pah band with tubas and horns," he notes. "Some of the oddest Hawaiian-style material came out of middle Europe, like Hungary and Czechoslovakia, pre-World War II. They all listened to Frank Ferreira, so they mixed string quartets with steel guitar."
Maui musician Derick Sebastian has just released a four-track CD, "My Redemption." with all proceeds to benefit Hope Chapel Pastor Kit Lauer, who was diagnosed with leukemia.
"It's inspirational music," says Derick. "People know me more for the ukulele and different styles. My foundation for this music is inspirational and spiritual." The CD is available at Borders and other stores.
* Contact Jon Woodhouse at firstname.lastname@example.org.