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4504I have found Mike Hanapi!

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  • Cadia Los
    Mar 4, 2010
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      Hello, all ...

      It's been a long 7 weeks without a computer at home and having to rely on brief
      sessions on library and other public computers. But I am once again online and
      can work until 3 a.m. if I wish!

      I have found quite a bit of information about DB's friend, Mike Hanapi, and in
      fact am listening to him sing even as I write.

      More details later, but here's a teaser for you from Winnipeg in June 1918. I
      have also placed the item in Files > Publications > Manitoba Free Press.


      Pantages -- All five races are represented at the Pantages theatre
      this week in Bert LaMont's novelty, "The World in Harmony." The
      act, the nature of which was billed as a mystery, has five singers,
      one white, one black, one red, one brown and one yellow. And each
      of the five has a voice of surprising quality. They appear in
      characteristic costumes in the act. Chief Eagle Horse himself
      is the representative of the Red race. He sings in a baritone of
      great volume and splendid tone. Shun Tocke Sathe, a Japanese,
      with an oriental tenor of a strange quality, represents the yellow.
      J. Packer-Ramsay, a negro with the rich voice that has made colored
      singers popular all over the world, represents the black race.
      Mike Hanapi has the little-known voice of the South Sea Islander,
      a voice of peculiar tone, which is very effective. Jack LeClaire
      represents the white race. Each of this strangely assorted
      quintette sings separately, then in harmony. The effect of the
      harmony is something difficult to describe, different from any other
      quintette you have ever heard, and strangely impressive. The
      blending of tones, accomplished after months of training by these
      five splendidly musical singers, is perfect. Blackface Eddie Ross
      and four other high class acts also are on the bill.

      Note: Mike Hanapi is the Hawaiian friend who in the early 1930s gave Don
      Blanding a talisman to guide his life: "Lord, I Do Give Thee Thanks For The
      Abundance That Is Mine." DB had the initials for the sentence carved on the
      fireplace mantel at his home in Carmel, California.

      Hanapi possessed a fine tenor voice and sang in a powerful Hawaiian
      falsetto that will take your breath away. In 1926, he formed the
      Hanapi Trio, an instrumental group in which he played acoustic steel
      guitar. With the addition of tenor and ukulele player William Kalama, the
      group became Kalama's Quartet, performing and recording mostly vocal
      selections; later a second steel guitar made it a quintet but the name
      remained unchanged. A CD compilation released in 1993 of recordings made
      between 1927 and 1932 is still available on the secondary market.

      Mike Hanapi returned to Honolulu in 1938, and to his first instrument, the
      saxophone. He opened a music shop, taught saxophone and, in 1940, joined the
      Royal Hawaiian Band as a saxophonist until his death in 1959.



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