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Finalists Announced for 2021 Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards

Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards. File image.

The finalists for this year’s 44th Annual Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards include names from among Hawaiʻi’s most talented musicians, songwriters and producers. On this year’s final ballot are the top five artists, singles or albums in 39 different categories selected by members of the Hawaiʻi Academy of Recording Arts.

The full list of this year’s 2021 Nā Hōkū Hanohano finalists is posted below.

2021 Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards – Finalist

Album of the Year (Producer’s & Artist’s Award)

  • Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Lukela Keala by Lukela Keala (Waiehu Records)
  • 2020 by Ekolu (Waiehu Records)
  • Henry’s House by Henry Kapono (Kapono Records)
  • Kahekeonāpua by Kamaka Kukona (Hanu)

EP (“Extended Play”) of the Year

  • Just Be You by Tavana (Tavana)
  • Where I Reside by Kalaʻe (Kalaʻe)
  • ʻEmanuʻela by Zeo Worship (Zeo Music Worship)
  • High Watah Music by High Watah (HIFI Records/Revive The Live Records)
  • Where The Sand Meets The Sea by Kimo Kahoano & Kamuela Kahoano (Green Light Go HI Productions)

Hawaiian EP (“Extended Play”) of the Year

  • He Mele No Papa by Kalani Miles (Mea Nui Records LLC)
  • Lei Makamae by Makamae Auwae (Soulforth Records)
  • A Timeless Hymn (Hawaiian Version) by Ben Kama (Ke Akua Mele Productions) 
  • ʻEha by Christy Leinaʻala Lassiter (Christy Leinaʻala Lassiter)

Single of the Year

  • Your Song Plays On by Lehua Kalima (Kalima Music LLC)
  • Noelani by Iolani & Natalie Ai Kamauu (Keko Records LLC))
  • Hawai’i Nui Kuauli by Mailani MakaʻĪnaʻi (Mailani Hawai’i LLC)
  • My Reason by Maoli (Awong Entertainment LLC)
  • Light Me Up by Kapena (KDE Records)
  • There Was Jesus by Nāpua Greig & Damon Williams (Pihana Productions)

Hawaiian Single of the Year

  • My Sweet by Iolani & Natalie Ai Kamauu (Keko Records LLC)
  • Uilani by Lukela Keala (Waiehu Records)
  • Eia mai ʻo Hauʻula by Waipuna (Poki Records)
  • Ka Mele ʻO Ke Anuenue by Darrell Aquino (Mana Records)
  • Nopu Ka Manaʻo by Hāwane Rios (Saddle Road Productions)

Christmas Single of the Year

  • Christmas Lūʻau by Kimie Miner & Paula Fuga (Haku Records)
  • O Holy Night by Kalani Peʻa (Peʻa records & Entertainment)
  • Christmas Day by Tarvin Makia featuring Natalie Ai Kamauu (No Label)
  • Christmas Joy by Stacie Kuʻulei (Kuʻulei Productions)
  • Angels We have Heard On High by Darrell Aquino (Mana Recordings)

Music Video of the Year

  • Noelani by Iolani & Natalie Ai Kamauu (Keko Records LLC)
  • O Holy Night by Kalani Peʻa (Peʻa Records & Entertainment)
  • There Was Jesus by Nāpua Greig & Damon Williams (Pihana Productions)
  • Hawai’i Nui Kuauli by Mailani Maka’īna’i (Mailani Hawai’i LLC)
  • My Reason by Maoli (Awong Entertainment LLC)

Hawaiian Music Video of the Year

  • Hanakaʻōʻō by ʻIwalani Hoʻomanawanui Apo (North Beach West Maui Benefit Fund)
  • Kuʻu Mele Aloha ʻAina by Kaleo Phillips (Moʻolelo Hui Hana Keaka)
  • Worldwide #Jam4MaunaKea – Kū Ha’aheo & Hawai’i Loa by Mana Maoli (Mana Maoli)
  • I Love You (E Pili Mau) by Kalani Peʻa – (Sony Music Inc.- Peʻa Records & Entertainment)
  • E Pili Mai by Koa (Koa)
  • Mele Inoa No Kele by Kaleo Phillips (Moʻolelo Hui Hana Keaka)

Instrumental Composition of the Year (Composer’s Award)

  • Morning Sun by Waipuna (Poki Records)
  • Brave by Kris Fuchigami (Kris Fuchigami)
  • Moving Forward by Herb Ohta Jr. (Lele Music Productions)
  • Hinano by Kaleo Phillips (Maui Tribe Records)
  • See You Soon by Kimo Kahoano & Kamuela Kahoano (Green Light Go HI Productions)

Song of the Year (Composer’s Award)

  • Your Song Plays On by Lehua Kalima (Kalima Music LLC)
  • Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Your Refrain by Maggie Herron (Herron Song Records)
  • Noelani by Iolani & Natalie Ai Kamauu (Keko Records LLC)
  • Little Grass Shack by Henry Kapono (Kapono Records)
  • Hawaiʻi Nui Kuauli by Mailani MakaʻĪnaʻi (Mailani Hawaiʻi LLC)
  • Uilani by Lukela Keala (Waiehu Records)

Female Vocalist of the Year

  • Kainani Kahaunaele for Waipunalei (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Maggie Herron for Your Refrain (Herron Song Records)
  • Keilana for I Am (Zeo Music)
  • Karlie G for Train Of Thought (KGM Productions)
  • Makamae Auwae for Lei Makamae (Soulforth Records)

Male Vocalist of the Year

  • Lukela Keala for Lukela Keala (Waiehu Records)
  • Henry Kapono for Henry’s House (Kapono Records)
  • Kamaka Kukona for Kahekeonāpua (Hanu)
  • Tavana for Sway (Tavana)
  • Kalani Miles for He Mele No Papa (Mea Nui Records LLC)

Group of the Year

  • Ekolu for 2020 (Waiehu Records)
  • Hoʻokena for Meant To Be (Huliau LLC)
  • Waipuna for Kuʻu Lei Aloha (Poki Records)
  • Kapena for Kapena: A Kapena Family Christmas Special (KDE Records)
  • Pandanus Club for Live At Aloha Station (K&M Music)

Most Promising Artist(s) of the Year

  • Keilana for I Am (Zeo Music)
  • Makamae Auwae for Lei Makamae (Soulforth Records)
  • Ka Pilina for Nā Wahi Pana (Ahumanu Records)
  • Bronson Aiwohi for Movin’ (Bronson Aiwohi LLC)
  • High Watah for Watahs Rising (HIFI Records/Revive The Live Records)
  • The Mana Music Quartet for Queen Liliʻuokalani (Mana Music Hawaiʻi)

Alternative Album of the Year

  • Chroma (Vol. 1) by Sean Cleland (Sean Cleland Music LLC)
  • Pohaku Motu by Kaʻimi Hananoʻeau (Loʻihi Inc)
  • Feels Like Home by Dustin Pacleb (Dustin Pacleb)
  • Sanya by Sanya (No Label)
  • In Memory Of You by Layla Kilolu (No Label)

Anthology of the Year (Producer’s Award)

  • Anthology Album by Tropical Knights (KDE Records)
  • Through The Decades an Anthology 1980-2020 by Darrell Aquino (Daddy Leopard Records)
  • Trilogy by SIN73 (Tin Idol Productions)
  • Tear Down The Walls by Dennis & Christy Soares (Elation Records)

Christmas Album of the Year

  • Kapena: A Kapena Family Christmas Special by Kapena (KDE Records)
  • A Ku Kama Christmas by Keoni Ku & Ben Kama (Ke Akua Mele Productions)
  • Kaori Kawabuchi Christmas Piano Album by Kaori Kawabuchi (THP)
  • Christmas Aloha by Michael Chock (Seawind Productions)

Compilation Album of the Year (Producer’s Award)

  • Lei Nāhonoapiʻilani: Nā Mele Hou (North Beach West Maui Benefit Fund)
  • Huliāmahi, Vol. 1 by Various Artists (Kāhuli Leo Leʻa)
  • Aloha & Mahalo II: J-Songs Meet Hawaiian by Various Artists (Sony Music Japan)
  • Live From The Empty Palace 2020 by Various Artists (Empty Palace Productions)
  • Together, Words and Music by Cindy Paulos (Practicing Aloha)
  • All In This Together by Cindy Paulos (Practicing Aloha)

Contemporary Album of the Year

  • Henry’s House by Henry Kapono (Kapono Records)
  • Sway by Tavana (Tavana)
  • Take Me Home by Connie Cruz (Zeo Music)
  • Danny And Rene by Danny Kaleikini & Rene Paulo (Ming Pur Records)
  • Renaissance – Volume 1 by Sandy Essman (Tin Idol Productions)

Contemporary Acoustic Album of the Year

  • First Dance by Kaleo Phillips (Maui Tribe Records)
  • Kuʻu Wahi Pili by Rama Camarillo (No Label)
  • We Will Rise by Anthony Pfluke (Maui Anthony LLC)
  • Endless Shore by Frank Kaʻanoʻi (Frank Kaʻanoʻi Music)
  • Malia by Jimmy Burgess (Jimmy Burgess Music)

Hawaiian Music Album of the Year

  • Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Meant To Be by Hoʻokena (Huliau LLC)
  • Kahekeonāpua by Kamaka Kukona (Hanu)
  • Nā Wahi Pana by Ka Pilina (Ahumanu Records)
  • Ka Mea Hookani by Mike Kaawa (Mike Kaawa)
  • Kuʻu ʻAina Aloha by Faith Ako (Independent)

Hawaiian Slack Key Album of the Year

  • Far Away by Patrick Landeza (Addison Street)
  • Slack Key Ladyland by Cindy Combs (PULE2020)
  • Resilience by Lance Takamiya (No Label)

Hip Hop Album of the Year

  • From Beneath Maunakea by Punahele (Punahele)
  • Tidying Up by Ohtoro (Zenbu Records)
  • Shore Lines by Sans + Ohtoro (Zenbu Records)
  • Rage With Sage by Sage Atom (1379859 Records DK)
  • The Kings’ Lessons Volume One by Doctabarz (Zenbu Records)

Instrumental Album of the Year

  • Queen Liliʻuokalani by The Mana Music Quartet (Mana Music Hawaiʻi)
  • 2020 Vision Instrumentals by Inna Vision (Roots Musician Records)
  • The Oceans Of My Mind by Dennis Soares (Elation Records)
  • Sweet Gold by Lani Park (Gold Star Records)
  • Fuse by Brent Magstadt (Slippina Disc)
  • Village Eater by Men In Grey Suits (No Label)

Island Music Album of the Year

  • Lukela Keala by Lukela Keala (Waiehu Records)
  • Kuʻu Lei Aloha by Waipuna (Poki Records)
  • Children Of The Sea (Nā Kama Kai) by Haku Keiki (Haku Records)
  • Live At Aloha Station by Pandanus Club (Makuakane Music)
  • Big Island Soul by Dennis & Christy Soares (Elation Records)
  • Bring Aloha by Janet Fisher (Goodnight Kiss Records)

Jazz Album of the Year

  • Your Refrain by Maggie Herron (Herron Song Records)
  • Jazz Vignettes by Pierre Grill (RVR Records)
  • Muse by Jesse Snyder (Mana Music & Meda)
  • Thomas Makay Presents Vibra Cubana A Tribute To Cal Tjader by Thomas Mackay (No Label)

Metal Album of the Year

  • Poisoned Love by Storm (Tin Idol Productions)
  • Dia De Los Muertos by The Midnight Skulls (Tin Idol Productions)
  • King of Anarchy by Abysmia (Tin Idol Productions)

R&B Album of the Year

  • I Am by Keilana (Zeo Music)
  • Train Of Thought by Karlie G (KGM Productions)
  • The Blues With Sweet Mama Dee And Mama’s Boys by Sweet Mama Dee (756 Mt. Clair Prods)

Reggae Album of the Year

  • 2020 by Ekolu (Waiehu Records)
  • The Breakthrough by Maoli (Awong Entertainment LLC)
  • 2020 Vision by Inna Vision (Roots Musician Records)
  • Looking Forward by Lady Patrice (Unicorn Productions 808)

Religious Album of the Year

  • Nā Halelū by Kenneth Makuakāne (Makuakane Music Music)
  • Hoʻonani by Zeo Worship (Zeo Music Worship)
  • Inspiration by Darrell Aquino (Mana Recordings)
  • In The Wilderness by Rachel Morley (Zeo Music Worship)
  • Aftermath by Ben Kama (Ke Akua Mele Productions)

Rock Album of the Year

  • Diamond Head Road by Michael Piranha (Tubby Tunes Records)
  • 82FIFTY by 82FIFTY (Audio Ramen)
  • YumYum Beast by YumYum Beast (No Label)
  • Play That Disco by Average Joes (Play That Disco Productions)
  • The Granite Saints for Judgement Day (The Granite Saints)

ʻUkulele Album of the Year

  • ʻUkulele Life by Herb Ohta Jr. (Lele Music Productions)
  • Evolv3 by Andrew Molina (Shadow Uke Music)
  • Beginning Today by Christopher Trietsch (Christopher Trietsch)

Adjudicated Categories:

International Album

  • Kaulana (TRIO) – Leolani
  • Mana Leone Hasegawa – Manalani
  • Alvis Chiu – BEATing!
  • Rikuya – Palette
  • Ukulele Swing Trio – Mercy! Mercy! Mercy!

Haku Mele Award

  • Hiapo K. Perreira & Kainani Kahaunaele for “Ohaoha Kou Lei Pua I Ka Hikina”
  • Frank Kaʻiuokalani Damas & Keely Rivera for “Ahulau Ka Piʻipiʻi I Kakanilua”
  • Kainani Kahaunaele, Cody Pueo Pata & Snowbird Bento for “No Pihemanu”
  • Nicholas Kealʻi Lum for “Kaluāhole”
  • Kainani Kahaunaele for “Waipunalei”

Hawaiian Language Performance Award

  • Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Meant To Be by Hoʻokena (Huliau LLC)
  • Kahekeonāpua by Kamaka Kukona (Hanu)
  • Nā Wahi Pana by Ka Pilina (Ahumanu Records)
  • Kuʻu Lei Aloha by Waipuna (Poki Records)

Hawaiian Engineering Award

  • Michael Grande for Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele (Māhuahua Music LLC)
  • Michael Casil & Wailau Ryder for Kahekeonāpua by Kamaka Kukona (Hanu)
  • Michael Casil for Lei Makamae by Makamae Auwae (Soulforth Records)
  • Michael Grande for Huliāmahi, Vol. 1 by Various Artists (Kāhuli Leo Leʻa)
  • Michael Grande for Lei Nāhonoapiʻilani: Nā Mele Hou by Various Artists (North Beach West Maui Benefit Fund)

General Engineering Award

  • Dave Tucciarone, Daniel Gilad & Gaylord Holomalia for Henry’s House by Henry Kapono (Kapono Records)
  • Michael Casil for From The Inside by Kalo (Kalo DeLeon)
  • Imua Garza, Nate Brown & Evan Khay for I Am by Keilani (Zeo Music)
  • Imua Garza, Nate Brown & Evan Khay for In The Wilderness by Rachel Morley (Zeo Music Worship)
  • Imua Garza for Chroma (Vol. 1) by Sean Cleland (Sean Cleland Music LLC)

Liner Notes Award

  • Duane DeSoto, Chantelle Kapua & Kimie Miner for Children of the Sea (Nā Kama Kai) by Haku Keiki
  • Kainani Kahaunaele for Waipunalei by Kainani Kahaunaele
  • Aaron Mahi for Queen Lili’uokalani by Mana Music Quartet
  • Lihau Paik for Far Away by Patrick Landeza
  • Uʻilani Tanigawa Lum & Zachary Alakaʻi Lum for Huliāmahi, Vol. 1 by Various Artists

Graphics Award

  • Zach Manzano for 82FIFTY by 82FIFTY
  • Zach Manzano for Inspiration by Darrell Aquino
  • Jason Antonio, Duane DeSoto & Kimie Miner for Children of the Sea (Nā Kama Kai) by Haku Keiki
  • Yuko Porter for ʻUkulele Life by Herb Ohta Jr.
  • Elsa Senner for Sway by Tavana

The Hawai‘i Academy of Recording Arts (HARA) and Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards trace their origins to 1978. HARA also directs programs to promote quality and growth in the recording and music industries in Hawai’i.

HARA’s mission is to preserve, protect, promote, foster and advance Hawai‘i’s recording industry and the music of Hawai‘i.

Original source: https://mauinow.com/2021/05/06/finalist-announced-for-2021-na-hoku-hanohano-awards/

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