Julio Iglesias, the best-selling Latin singer of all time, finally lands at the MACC tonight. One of the world's Top-10 best-selling recording artists in any genre, over the course of a 40-year career Iglesias has recorded songs in 14 languages, sold more than 300 million albums, and produced numerous hits. It is estimated that he has performed more than 5,000 concerts in more than 600 cities around the world. And he has reportedly earned more than 2,600 platinum and gold records internationally.
"My most important achievement as an artist is being loved by people around the world," he says. "There are no platinum or gold records which can reward you more."
Starting in the early 1970s, Iglesias began recording songs and albums in various languages: Japanese, German, Portuguese, French and Italian. In 1983, he received the Diamond Record Award by the Guinness Book of World Records for selling more records in more languages than any other musical artist in history. Over the years he has collaborated with an astonishing array of artists including Frank Sinatra, Simon and Garfunkel, Dolly Parton, Diana Ross, Placido Domingo, Sting, Stevie Wonder and Willie Nelson on the major hit song"To All The Girls I've Loved Before."
Julio Iglesias tonight in the MACC’s Castle Theater.
* Julio Iglesias performs at 7:30 tonight at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center's Castle Theater. Comedian Dan Gabriel will open. Tickets are $65, $80, $95 and $125 plus applicable fees, available from the MACC box office, 242-7469 or online at www.mauiarts.org.
On his recent Grammy-nominated album, "Maestro," veteran bluesman Taj Mahal celebrated the 40th anniversary of his career with a star-studded project that included Ziggy Marley, Jack Johnson, Ben Harper, Los Lobos, Angelique Kidjo and Mali's kora master, Toumani Diabete.
"We've all talked about doing projects together," Taj reports. "So here was an opportunity, 40 years in the business playing with some good people."
Since the mid-1960s this consummate musician has drawn from a vast palette, forming authentic, rootsy compositions, that while remaining true to tradition, manage to sound uniquely his own. Another chapter in his ever-evolving path, "Maestro" effectively blends various styles of music from soul and early R&B, to reggae and African pop, and of course electric blues.
"Everyone had songs that they liked, and Ben Harper came up with a new song," he continues. "It all worked."
About to embark on a three-island tour, Taj will perform with the Hula Blues Band, an exceptional ensemble made up of musicians primarily from Kauai. Having resided on Kauai for 15 years, Taj explored his love for Hawaiian music on two albums, "Sacred Island," released in 1996, and "Hanapepe Dream," in 2003, where he cooked up a soulful Caribbean/bluesy/Hawaiian stew accented with steel guitar, slack key guitar and ukulele.
"We're going to do some new stuff," he says. "We've got a bunch of new tunes. Maybe in the next year we'll have a new album."
Also on the bill, Hawaiian slack key guitar legend Ledward Ka'apana. "Led will play with us the whole time," he adds. "I've played with him several times before. He's a great musician."
* Taj Mahal & the Hula Blues Band with Ledward Ka'apana perform an ocean-side concert at the Royal Lahaina Resort on Saturday. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. for food and beverage concessions, and silent auction, with show at 8 p.m. Tickets are $45 in advance, $55 at the door, and gold circle table seating is $65. Call 661-3611. For more info on Taj, check out www.tajblues.com.
Jamaican reggae star Junior Reid has been working on a new album, "Living Legend," which features historic collaborations with a number of leading hip-hop artists including Lil Wayne, Snoop Dog, Cool and Dre and Swiss Beat, as well asreggae musicians Capleton, and Reid's sons, Andrew and Wada Blood.
"We have the tracks ready, we'll have it out by August," he reports. "It was a nice experience; I'm a reggae artist working with hip-hop artists, experiencing their culture."
The former lead singer of Black Uhuru, known for hits like "One Blood"and"This is Why I'm Hot," was featured in 2007 performing with Alicia Keys on the American Music Awards, and sang on a remix version of Keys' hit "No One."
Destined for a musical career, Junior Reid recorded his first single, "Speak the Truth," at the age of 14. Four years later he joined Black Uhuru, singing lead on two Grammy-nominated albums.
"Growing up in the ghetto and listening to the sound system in the community I wanted to get into music," he recalls. "The music inspired me, and I got to inspire others."
* Junior Reid performs at 7 p.m. Friday at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center. New Zealand's popular Katchafire will open, along with Innavision and Fiji. Tickets are $35 advance, $40 day of show, plus applicable fees available from the MACC (242-7469, www.mauiarts.org), Green Banana Internet Caf in Paia, Old Lahaina Book Emporium, and Request Music in Wailuku.
Hapa returns to the MACC for their annual concert in the Castle Theatre on Saturday. The acclaimed multi-Hoku-winning duo has been busy touring with a revamped show that, Barry Flanagan reports, sometimes extends to three hours.
"It's been an amazing, unbelievable tour, with lots of positive energy," says Barry. "We've basically thrown everything out, still doing the old songs, but tacking on a new show and it's exciting. Fifty percent is stuff people have never seen, and they're long shows like drop-dead, Springsteen-Hawaiian shows."
Among new material, they're covering Matisyahu's reggae hit "One Day." "We're doing it Barry McGuire style, almost like an anti-war anthem," he reports.
They have a new CD out, "Malihini," featuring eight new songs, sung in Hawaiian and English, with four tracks from previous works. It's available at their shows and online.
Unlike thousands of aspiring extras vying for a part in the new Adam Sandler comedy shooting on Maui, Barry and Nathan Aweau didn't have to line up for hours to be hired. They've been picked to perform, with the addition of Ledward Ka'apana on guitar and Ernie Cruz, Jr. on percussion, during a restaurant scene.
"We got a call out of the blue from director Dennis Dugan," Barry explains. "He said he was a huge fan of the group and would love to have us in a dinner scene with Adam Sandler, Dave Mathews, Nicole Kidman and Jennifer Aniston. They're talking about a song or two being in the movie. It's very cool."
For the MACC show Hapa will be augmented by chanter Charles Ka'upu, guitarist Jeff Peterson, bassist James "Hutch" Hutchinson, and, "we're hoping Gail Swanson shows up, she was a guest at our recent show in San Juan Capistrano."
* Hapa performs on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. in the MACC's Castle Theater. Tickets are $12, $28 and $37 (plus applicable fees, available as above.
Ebb & Flow Arts will present a free concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Makena's Keawalai Congregational Church featuring Honolulu Symphony Orchestra members Scott Anderson on clarinet, and violinist Ignace "Iggy" Jang, with Robert Pollock on piano.
The program includes the world premiere of New Jersey composer Timothy Broege's "Structure Trio," composed for E&F Ensemble in 2008. Jang will perform Bach's Sonata #1 for solo violin, and Anderson performs the 20th-century classic, "Three Pieces for Clarinet" by Igor Stravinsky.
Also included are the Hawaii premieres of French composer Claude Ballif's "Solfeggietto #3," and former Princeton University professor Edward T. Cone's "Duo" for clarinet and violin. And Pollock will present his 2009 composition, "Log A Rhythms, Volume 5" for solo piano.
A pre-concert discussion will be held at 6:30 p.m., and pupus and refreshments will be offered after the event on the church grounds.
Celebrating Frederic Chopin's 200th birthday, the MACC hosts pianist Thomas Purviance for a return performance in the McCoy Studio Theater on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Purviance will recreate the tradition of Chopin's small-audience Paris salon recitals of the 1830s, evoking that romantic time with music, stories and images. Works featured include "Ballade No. 4 in F minor," and the Polonaise "Heroic."
"The music of Chopin is some of the most rewarding to play on the piano," said Purviance."He is unique among the great composers because he wrote almost exclusively for the piano."
* Tickets are $22 for adults, and half-price for kids aged 12 years and under, plus applicable fees, available as above.
And finally, promoter Tom Moffatt brings his Band Champ statewide music competition back to Maui on Saturday evening in the MACC's McCoy Studio Theater. The contest is open to young musicians in all genres of music, including bands with original music as well as those who perform covers. All members of the band must be between the ages of 13 to 19. Tickets are $10.