Big Islands Honoka’a Jazz Band to Perform with Royal Hawaiian Band

Media Release:

In honor of National Jazz Month, the 32-member Honoka’a Jazz Band from the Big Island has scheduled a “Big City Tour” of Oahu with several performances and appearances from April 14-17. Rep. Mark Nakashima, District 1 – North Kohala, South Kohala, Hamakua, North Hilo, South Hilo, who graduated from Honoka’a High School and is a big fan of jazz music, arranged for the group to open for the Royal Hawaiian Band on the grounds of the Iolani Palace on Friday, April 15, 2011. The group will play from 11:10 – 11:40 a.m. Rep. Mark Nakashima will give the opening remarks.

The Honoka’a Jazz Band Performed at the Kings Shop back in December. Photo Credit: Toni Hall, Kaitlin Hal

The Honoka’a Jazz Band is the pride and joy of Honoka‘a High. In 2010, the music program at Honoka’a High School was selected by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation (NAMM) as one of 138 schools in the United States with an outstanding music program and commitment to music education. They are also the recipients of the prestigious 2011 Grammy Signature Schools Enterprise Award. Gary Washburn, the band director, recently received the 2011 Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction Award from the National Society of High School Scholars.

This year the band’s repertoire includes the music of Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Dusty Springfield, Miles Davis, Bobby Timmons, Michael Buble, Patsy Cline, Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin and a special arrangement of Pachelbel’s “Canon in D”.

“Honoka’a High School’s music program demonstrates that with dedicated staff, parental and community support our children in rural Hamakua can compete and be recognized nationwide,” said Rep. Nakashima.

Honoka’a Jazz Band “Big City Tour 2011” Schedule

  • Thursday, April 14th, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Shriner’s Childrens Hospital Special Luncheon, 1310 Punahou Street, Honolulu
  • Thursday, April 14th 7-8 p.m., Dots in Wahiawa- 139 Mango Street,
  • Friday, April 15th 7-8a.m., Peace of the Rainbow “Power of Jazz” hour Broadcast LIVE: Statewide on OC16 Television and on the Morning Drive of AM 1080 Radio also Global on Panel: Gary Washburn, Rep. Mark Nakashima, Chuck James. Panel discussion – The power of Jazz, what makes jazz unique, role of jazz in education, does jazz create better people, the story of Honoka’a Jazz Band,  Pride of Honoka’a
  • Friday, April 15th – 11:10-11:40 a.m., Opening for the Royal Hawaiian Band at Iolani Palace.
  • Friday, April 15th – 6:30-7:30 p.m., Windward Mall Center Stage, Saturday, April 16th – 12 p.m. – 1 p.m., Ala Moana Shopping Center Stage.
  • Saturday, April 16th – 6p.m., Twilight Jazz at Helemoa Royal Grove at the Royal Hawaiian Center. Opening for Paul Shimamoto performing from his debut release “All That Hawaiian Jazz” a multi Na Hoku Nominee and Kekauoha The Jazz Project.
  • Sunday, April 17th – 12:15 p.m. -1:15p.m., Honolulu Academy of Arts Bank of Hawaii.

The Big 84 The Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History has led the initiative for Jazz Appreciation Month, or JAM, “to draw public attention to the glories of jazz as both an historical and a living treasure.” According to the Smithsonian’s website, during the month of April musicians, concert halls, schools, colleges, museums, libraries, and public broadcasters are encouraged to offer special programs on jazz.

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