Reichel wins big at 2015 Hoku Awards

May. 24, 2015 | 0 Comments

BY JOHN BERGER / jberger@staradvertiser.com

It was 20 years ago when Keali‘i Reichel and his debut album, “Kawaipunahele,” came close to sweeping the 18th annual Na Hoku Hanohano Awards. Reichel won in five categories, including Favorite Entertainer, Hawaiian Album, Male Vocalist of the Year and Album of the Year.

CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COMKeali'i Reichel performs on stage at the Hawai'i Convention Center during the 2015 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards.

CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

Keali’i Reichel on stage at the Hawai’i Convention Center during the 2015 Na Hoku Hanohano Awards.

(The award for Album of the Year goes to the producer(s) as well as the artist, and since Reichel was one of the producers of his debut album, that upped his total tally in 1995 to six.)

Reichel did even better on Saturday as “Kawaiokalena,” the project widely rumored to mark the end of his career as a recording artist, was the runaway winner at the 38th annual Na Hoku Hanohano Awards at the Hawai’i Convention Center.

Counting a win for studio engineering that went to the album’s three engineers, Reichel and his album won in eight categories. His personal wins included Male Vocalist (for the fifth time), Favorite Entertainer (for the fourth time) and Album of the Year (with double wins as artist and producer for the fourth time), and Favorite Entertainer (the only award categorty determined by public vote, also for the fourth time).

Reichel also won both of the adjudicated categories for Hawaiian language songwriting and performance.

No one else won more than two awards.

The short list of people who won two Hokus included Jim Linkner and Shawn Pimental, who received awards for their work as co-producers and co-engineers of Reichel’s album. A third member of Reichel’s production team, recording studio engineer Michael Grande, also received a Hoku Award for his work engineering Reichel’s album; Grande won his second Hoku as the sole winner in the other engineering category.

Hawaiian music veteran Kawika Kahiapo added two Hokus to his lifetime collection and did it with wins for two different albums. Kahiapo won the award for Island Music Album of the Year with “Ku‘u ‘Aina Aloha” and Slack Key Album of the Year with “Ho‘omaluhia.” He was the only recording artist to win awards with different projects in 2015.

Hū‘ewa won Most Promising Artist(s) and Group of the Year. The double win made Hū‘ewa the sixth group in the 38-year history of the Hoku Awards to win those two categories in same year. They join The Krush (1981), Ho‘okena (1991), HAPA (1994), ‘Ale‘a (2001) and Na Hoa (2013) on that page of Hoku history.

HARA membership determined the winners in 24 categories; the winner of Favorite Entertainer was determined by public vote. Winners in the two Hawaiian language categories — Haku Mele and Hawaiian Language Performance — were selected by a panel of specialists in Hawaiian song writing. The winners in the two categories for studio engineering were selected by a panel of mainland studio engineers who do not work in the local recording industry.

The winner of one of the newest awards, International Recognition Album, is also selected by adjudication. The criteria used in choosing a winner in that category and the qualifications of the adjudicators have not been made public.

2015 NA HOKU HANOHANO AWARDS

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel (Punahele); Keali‘i Reichel, Fred Krauss, Jim Linkner, Shawn Pimental and Michael Grande, producers

ALTERNATIVE ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Kalakaua Avenue,”Streetlight Cadence (Streetlight Cadence)

CHRISTMAS ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Endless Christmas,” Ginai (Black Hawaiian)

COMPILATION ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Island Style Ukulele 2,” Various Artists (Neos); Bob and Pati St. John, producers

CONTEMPORARY ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Reunion,” Amy & Willie K (Island Soul)

ENGINEERING AWARD (HAWAIIAN)

Michael Grande, Jim Linkner, and Shawn Pimental for “Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel (Punahele)

ENGINEERING AWARD (GENERAL)

Michael Grande for “They Come and They Go,” Reggie Padilla (Pass Out)

EP RELEASE OF THE YEAR

“Cha-Lang-A-Lang Christmas,” Nā Hoa (Nā Hoa)

FAVORITE ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR

Keali’i Reichel

FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Mailani, “A Lot Like Love” (Hā)

GRAPHICS AWARD

Wailani Artates for “Olanui,” Sean Robbins (Sean Robbins)

GROUP OF THE YEAR

Hū‘ewa, “Hū‘ewa” (Hā)

HAKU MELE AWARD

“Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel from “Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel (Punahele)

HAWAIIAN ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel (Punahele)

HAWAIIAN LANGUAGE PERFORMANCE AWARD

Keali‘i Reichel, “Kawaiokalena” (Punahele)

INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Jus’ Cruzin’,” Ledward Kaapana (Jus’ Press)

INSTRUMENTAL COMPOSITION OF THE YEAR

“1,000 Crystals,” Pali Ka‘aihue from “1,000 Crystals,” Pali Ka‘aihue (PK)

INTERNATIONAL ALBUM RECOGNITION AWARD

“Kepani,” Kentaro Tsushima (School Bus)

ISLAND MUSIC ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Ku’u ‘Āina Aloha,” Kawika Kahiapo (Pono)

JAZZ ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Good Thing,” Maggie Herron

KI HO’ALU FOUNDATION LEGACY AWARD

Bobby Moderow, Jr.

LINER NOTES AWARD

Neil J. Hannahs for “E Mau Ke Aloha,” Waipuna (Poki)

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Keali’i Reichel, “Kawaiokalena” (Punahele)

MOE KEALE “ALOHA IS” AWARD FOR COMMUNITY SERVICE

Melveen Leed

MOST PROMISING ARTIST(S) OF THE YEAR

Hū‘ewa, “Hū‘ewa” (Hā)

R&B ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Waking Up,” Maryanne Ito (InTribal Scribings)

REGGAE ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Paradise,” Kolohe Kai (RKD)

RELIGIOUS ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Victorious,” New Hope Oahu (Dream Worship)

ROCK ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Live Duke’s On Sunday 2,” Henry Kapono (Kapono)

SINGLE OF THE YEAR

“‘Ohai Ali‘i Kaluhea,” Kuana Torres Kahele (KTK)

SLACK KEY ALBUM OF THE YEAR

“Ho’omaluhia,” Kawika Kahiapo (Pono)

SONG OF THE YEAR

“Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel from “Kawaiokalena,” Keali‘i Reichel (Punahele)

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