- Pa’ina Hou!
Let the feast continue . . . .
- Another generous helping from one of Maui’s most talented recording artists, Pa’ina Hou! is a perfect mixture of traditional and contemporary Hawaiian mele. It includes hula classics, three songs from Maui’s famed Farden family, and several gorgeous hapa-haole (English language) numbers.
- Ata’s impressive instrumental talents are evident as he accompanies himself on ‘ukulele, guitar, upright bass and piano. He even dusted off his dad’s accordion for one song! Guest artists appear sparingly but with effect: Zacc Kekona, Joe Kaimana, Dwight Takumoto, Cody Pueo Pata, Kaiolohia Smith, Heli Silva, Jonathan Ka’onohi, and more.
- It is Ata’s fluid, nuanced voice that captivates in every song. “No question about it, he not only has a beautiful voice but has mastered the technique of breathing and singing simultaneously,” writes John Berger, music critic for the Honolulu Star-Bulletin.
- Ata’s mastery and pronunciation of Hawaiian are an added treat for students of the language.
- Wayne Harada, music critic for The Honolulu Advertiser writes: “Ata Damasco serves up a musical buffet that reflects his savvy vocal style (textured, with impressive diversity) and his menu (songs from yesterday and today).”
“Pa`ina Hou!” the songs:
- Ke Ala A Ka Jeep
(Eddie & Myrna Kamae, Mary Kawena Pukui)
Zacc Kekona’s backing vocals and Joe Kaimana’s steel guitar join Ata in this spirited mele about adventuring with friends in a jeep on rough backroads. An added verse in English takes us on the winding road to Kahakuloa on Maui.
- Ka Uluwehi O Ke Kai
Ata speaks an introduction (in Hawaiian) before singing this hula favorite with special reverence for the sea and its gifts.
- Pretty Red Hibiscus
(Johnny Noble & Rube Wolf)
A hapa-haole favorite, Ata accompanies himself on 4-string soprano uke, giving the feel of an intimate serenade. Tom Conway on guitars and the cascading voices of Na Leo Malu join the serenade.
- Maui Medley
(Lani Ha’aha’a Rev. Samuel Kapu; Na Wai ‘Eha Alice Johnson)
Pueo Pata, Heli Silva and Kaiolohia Smith join Ata in this rousing medley they performed for the Hula Bowl.
(George E. Akiu)
Ata performs this classic party hula song with high energy and soaring vocals, accompanied by Jonathan Ka’onohi (guitar) and Pueo Pata and Kaiolohia Smith (backing vocals).
- Kalama’ula/E Mama E Medley
(Hannah Dudoit/Hiram Kehu)
This is perhaps Ata’s finest display of vocal technique and interpretation, with astonishing held notes. Hearing it on the radio has been known to stop people in their tracks so they can find the nearest store to get their copy!
(Vicki I’i Rodriques)
Another party favorite of falsetto singers; Ata remembers the late Myra English in his rendition.
- Lai Toodle
Ata adds accordion to the rest of his instrumentation as he and brother Kalani sing this poignant plantation-era mele.
- Kaimuki Hula
(Alice M. Rickard)
Another energetic party classic, with Ata letting loose in the “pa’ani” with his bold piano flourishes.
(Irmgard Farden Aluli, Pilahi Paki, Napua Stevens)
A mele from Lahaina’s famed Farden family that Ata includes in fond memory of performing it at the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival for Maui’s Pukalani Hula Hale.
- Beautiful Kaua’i
(Rudolph “Randy” Haleakala Farden)
This beautiful English-language mele and Ata’s lush, honeyed voice transport us to the Garden Isle of Kaua’i.
- Kipu Kai
(Mary Kawena Pukui & Maddy K. Lam)
This popular mele by an incomparable song-writing duo takes us to Kaua’i. Got hula?
- Kona Moon
Another song in the English language, Ata is joined by Jonathan Ka’onohi (guitar) and Joe Kaimana (steel guitar) under a beautiful Kona moon.
(Arthur K. Damasco)
Ata shares his mana’o (thoughts) in this original composition about the total eclipse of the sun that drew thousands of visitors to Maui in 1991; clouds prevented most from witnessing the symbolic union of man and woman.
- One Little Dream of You
(Irmgard Farden Aluli)
The 4-string soprano uke and Ata’s voice are perfect for expressing deep longing for a loved one away at war in this WWII-era song composed by Maui’s famed Auntie Irmgard. Willy Wainwright’s violin and the voices of Na Leo Malu enhance the poignancy as Pa’ina Hou! comes to a close.