Hawaii Mom Blog: Halekulani's Live at Lewers 2023 presents Jeff Peterson - October 26 & 27 and The WAITIKI 7 at House Without A Key - Nov 24 & 25




October 20, 2023

Halekulani's Live at Lewers 2023 presents Jeff Peterson - October 26 & 27 and The WAITIKI 7 at House Without A Key - Nov 24 & 25

Photo courtesy of Halekulani

Halekulani’s Lewers Lounge, a prominent Waikiki oasis for sophisticated cocktails and contemporary live jazz music, announces the return of the special Live at Lewers  featuring award-winning musician Jeff Peterson performing on Thursday, October 26 and Friday, October 27.

In his first feature appearance at Lewers Lounge, Hawaii born and raised Jeff Peterson will create a rarified, deeply inspired evening, drawing on early roots of jazz in Hawaii. His focus on slack key guitar, classical, and jazz music has allowed him to develop a unique and transcendent voice on the guitar while being deeply rooted in the traditions of his local heritage.

“Halekulani has a legacy of providing our guests with unrivaled and distinct experiences, often with an emphasis on supporting and appreciating local arts and culture,” said Davide Barnes, Hotel Manager of Halekulani. “With the return of Live at Lewers, we are excited to welcome renowned local talent Jeff Peterson to the lounge for two incredible evenings of jazz.”

Jeff Peterson has contributed to two Grammy Award-winning recordings and has been honored with 11 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards in Hawaii, two Hoku Awards in 2016 for Slack Key Album of the Year and Instrumental Song of the Year, and the 2018 Na Hōkū Hanohano Instrumental Album of the Year. Born on the Island of Maui, he grew up on the slopes of Haleakala where he was introduced to the rich heritage of Hawaiian music by his father, a paniolo, or ‘Hawaiian cowboy,’ on the Haleakala Ranch.

The Live at Lewers special event further enhances Lewers Lounge’s live entertainment available nightly Tuesday through Saturday. The hotel looks forward to announcing additional headliners for the 2024 Live at Lewers.  The performances with Jeff Peterson will take place from 8:30 pm to 11:00 pm on both evenings. Reservations are required. Tickets are $65 per person and include two drinks and valet parking. Food and beverages will be served prior to the performance for an additional cost. For more information or to make a reservation, call (808) 518-2019 or visit Live at Lewers: Featuring Jeff Peterson | Halekulani Hotel

Photo courtesy of Halekulani

Sixty-five years ago, the enchanting sounds of Hawaii's musical maestros, Martin Denny, the virtuoso pianist, and Arthur Lyman, the mesmerizing vibraphonist, ignited a national sensation with their groundbreaking albums "Exotica" and "Taboo." Through their creativity and passion, they not only crafted extraordinary music but birthed an entirely new genre — Exotica!

Emerging amidst Hawaii's vibrant postwar music scene, Exotica was the quintessential, easy listening soundtrack behind many a bachelor pad, tiki bar, or globe trotters’ fantasy. The genre’s lush instrumentation and faraway soundscapes continue to inspire and captivate audiences worldwide.

The WAITIKI 7 will perform two nights of Exotica at one of Waikiki's most iconic venues, House Without A Key at Halekulani, from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm on Friday, November 24 and Saturday, November 25, 2023. This marks the triumphant return of live Exotica music to Waikiki, a revival of a bygone era. Savor the sunset and indulge in the signature Halekulani cocktail while basking in the exotic sounds of The WAITIKI 7.

Coincidentally, Halekulani played a pivotal, early role in the Exotica legacy: In 1954, Arthur Lyman, then working as a desk clerk at Halekulani, crossed paths with pianist Martin Denny. Denny offered Lyman a place in his band, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Martin Denny's music catapulted to the mainstream, with both him and Arthur Lyman gracing national television shows like American Bandstand, Andy Williams, and Steve Allen. Denny's 1959 hit single, "Quiet Village," soared to #4 on Billboard's charts, while his "Exotica" album eventually claimed the #1 spot. Local vibraphonist Arthur Lyman's hit, "Yellow Bird," peaked at #4 on the Billboard Charts in 1961.

“Exotica music brought Hawaii’s musicians to the world stage,” enthused Randy Wong, bassist, and co-founder of WAITIKI 7. “The music is a beautiful, cultural tapestry—an artistic interpretation of the melting pot that makes living in Hawaii so special. We’re thrilled to return this music to its roots and are delighted to perform it at Halekulani.” 

WAITIKI 7 initially formed as a quartet in Boston, MA, twenty years ago in 2003, when Wong and jazz drummer Abe Lagrimas Jr. were college students at New England Conservatory/Harvard University and Berklee College of Music, respectively. The name, a fusion of "Waikiki" and "Tiki," embodies their passion for the genre. During the 1990s lounge revival, Wong and Lagrimas discovered a void: there were few groups specializing in Exotica, none composed of conservatory-trained professional musicians.

The group boasts seven first-call musicians, four of whom hail from Honolulu: Jazz drummer Abe Lagrimas Jr. (Kamasi Washington, Eric Marienthal, Kenny Endo), bassist Randy Wong (of the Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra and President/CEO of the Hawaii Youth Symphony), percussionist and exotic bird caller Lopaka Colon (son of original Martin Denny percussionist and bird caller Augie Colon), and violinist Dr. Helen Liu (of the Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra and Galliard String Quartet). Completing the ensemble are flutist/saxophonist Tim Mayer (Artistic Director of the Orquesta Nacional de Jazz de Mexico), LA-based pianist Matt Politano, and vibraphonist Mika Mimura Erickson (Banda Magda, Michael League, Berklee College of Music).

For additional event details and reservations, please visit www.halekulani.com/experiences or call 808-518-2019.

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