Once a Hawaiian language student at UH Hilo, Kainani Kahaunaele is now a lecturer at the university’s Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke‘elikōlani College of Hawaiian Language. She’s also a highly successful musician and four-time Na Hoku Hanohano award winner.
Kainani Kahaunaele, award-winning musician and lecturer at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo‘s Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke‘elikōlani College of Hawaiian Language, spoke with Hawai‘i Public Radio about her latest album Waipunalei and the inspiration behind several mele (songs).
“I’m in here for the long haul,” she says. “I’m trying to get more Hawaiian music into the ears of Hawai‘i, into the ears of our youth, and to show my generation that we can do it. But we have to do it well, as far as the language and the poetry are concerned, and we’ll bring integrity to the front line of Hawaiian music.”