Freestyle: Women rock Honolulu

Mar. 28, 2014 | 0 Comments

BY ELIZABETH KIESZKOWSKI / ekieszkowski@staradvertiser.com

Erin Smith with her new band. (Courtesy photo)

WOMEN THAT ROCK

With Stef Muzic, Tantra, Erin Smith
and Erika Elona

» Where: Anna O’Briens, 2440 S. Beretania Street
» When: 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Friday, March 28
» Cost: $15, $10 before 10 p.m.
» Info: (808) 946-5190

As the days are growing longer my energy is rising, along with the energy level of nightlife options in Honolulu. Life is good.

Among the things I’m excited about: a concert tonight at Anna O’Brien’s, showcasing some of Honolulu’s most talented women in rock.

I’ve had the pleasure of hearing all of the four women perform live. It’s a strong lineup, featuring Stef Muzic (acoustic rock), Tantra (hip-hop) Erin Smith (pop/indie rock), and Erika Elona (folk/alternative).

Promoter Klever Kitty Presents tells fans to expect a “a strong, sexy, stilettos kind of night.” These women have been raking in the honors in Hawaii. Of note: Stef Muzic’s album “This Wave” won a 2013 Big Island Music Award and earned a 2013 Na Hoku Hanohano Award nomination for Rock Album of the Year. Be a part of her upcoming album, “Colour My Soul,” by visiting her Kickstarter page.

THE GIG is also notable because it will showcase a new band for Erin Smith made up of Honolulu-based musicians.

“This is a first for performances with my new band,” she said. “Woot!”

Smith, a whirlwind of energy, has been active in Honolulu as a solo artist and fashionista, and she also writes the Heels & Picks blog for the Pulse.

Don’t cry: The Throwdowns haven’t disbanded. Hopefully, we’ll see them soon.

Erika Elona. (Star-Advertiser File)

Erika Elona. (Star-Advertiser File)

But Smith said she has new music to get out there, much of it from a solo recording session that she undertook in Canada, and these musicians are on the right wavelength to do it. “Women That Rock” will be a kind of premiere for her new material, with a posse of Honolulu musicians in support.

Smith went to Montreal to record the new music almost two years ago, meeting up with notable producers Nick Petrowski and Gui Kaye — “supertalented guys,” Smith said, perhaps best known for their work with Arcade Fire on breakout album “Funeral.”

“It sounds really full and great,” Smith said enthusiastically, describing her solo sound as “Lana Del Rey meets Adele meets the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, with the Black Keys in there.”

Joining Smith on Friday will be Kate Saari Greennagel (also of Mano Kane) and Cassie Sillhart, both on keyboards and vocals, Gun-so Kawai on bass, Matt McPherson on guitar and Seann Carroll on drums. (Musician/producer Bran Apeles also plays with Smith; he is pictured on bass in the band photo above.)

“We started working together in the fall,” Smith said. “Now we’re ready to get out there and really play. … It’s great to have a band in your corner!”
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Elizabeth Kieszkowski is editor of TGIF, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser’s weekly arts and entertainment section. Reach her via email at ekieszkowski@staradvertiser.com or follow her on Twitter.

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