Tag Archives: Music

Pule o’o Moloka’i

I walked to the main lodge this morning to the sounds of aloha floating across the Hui’s lawn. Bronwyn and hui staff were sitting on the punee, ukelele’s in hand, performing Pule o’o Moloka’i (Prayer for Molokai), a hauntingly beautiful song. Posted here for you to share the aloha.

 

Near hole 3 of the decommissioned Kalua Koi golf course, Molokai, Hawaii.
Near hole 3 of the decommissioned Kalua Koi golf course, Molokai, Hawaii.

LISTEN TO THE BHOPPAS PLAY THE RAVANATHA DURING THE PUSHKAR MELA


Click play to listen to the Bhoppas sing with the Ravanatha.

Shamdar Bhoppa plays his great grandfathers Ravanatha while his wife, Shamma Bhoppa sings. The Bhoppas once made good money as traveling musicians before the tragic loss of one of their sons due to complications from a kidney stone.  The Bhoppas survive in a makeshift hut at the edge of the desert and support themselves by making and selling Ravanathas during festivals like the Pushkar Mela.
Shamdar Bhoppa plays his great grandfathers Ravanatha while his wife, Shamma Bhoppa sings. The Bhoppas once made good money as traveling musicians before the tragic loss of one of their sons due to complications from a kidney stone. The Bhoppas survive in a makeshift hut at the edge of the desert and support themselves off the sales of Ravanathas made by Mr. Bhoppa and sold by his children during festivals like the Pushkar Mela.

Jonathan Kingston CD cover

Beautiful Revolution - Near To You
Horses pasture near the Little Bighorn battlefield on the Crow Indian Reservation, Montana.

Before I attended college in the mid 1990’s, I lived on the Crow Indian reservation in Montana helping to run an after school youth center.  During my time there I became dear friends with a Crow Indian musician named Kenny Pretty on Top, who has just released his first Christian & Gospel album titled Beautiful Revolution – Near To You.  Given Kenny’s talent, I am surprised it took him this long to release a studio album and expect to see many more in the years to come!

Molokai, Hawaii, photography workshop – Day 5

Rikki often says it not about me taking the picture, but about the picture taking me.  The phrase what will I be taken by today? regularly enters my mind when I am shooting. Its simplicity disarming the inner critic that tells me that I have to go make a good picture. Its a phrase that gives me the freedom to wait.

This evening the banyan trees near the Hui took me.  Below are two of the results.

Click on the player below to listen to a short clip of some beautiful ukulele’s music and singing in the lodge before dinner.

Banyan tree near the Hui Ho'olana, Molokai, Hawaii
Banyan tree near the Hui Ho’olana, Molokai, Hawaii
Old Hawaiian home with large Banyan tree in the background, Molokai, Hawaii
Old Hawaiian home with large Banyan tree in the background, Molokai, Hawaii

Molokai, Hawaii, photography workshop – Day 3

This morning it was not the usual cacophony of birds and subtle song of wind chimes that woke me, but rather the melodic drumming of rain on the tin roof above my head.  Before I was fully conscious I knew our plans of a field trip to the mesmerizing ancient rainforest had washed away and by the time I sat up, I knew that the torrential downpour would make it hard to go anywhere but the computer lab.

“OK Jonathan” I thinking to myself, “how do I ride this thermal of change rather than flapping my wings in frustration?”  The answer arrived moments later when I nearly destroyed a rain laden spider web on my walk to the lab.  Something usually invisible had been transformed into jeweled strings of translucent pearls.  As I took my camera out of its bag, I could feel the thermal of excitement lifting my wings.

By the end of the day, the worst of the storm had blown over Molokai, and I headed down the hill to catch the sweet evening light.  The day didn’t turn out like my agenda had planned, but thanks to keeping my heart and mind open to change, I didn’t flap my wings in frustration all day long, and managed a few good frames in the process.

As a special treat Glenna Garramone performed some of her new songs at the Hui this evening.  Click below to listen.

Crab spider hanging on to a rain covered web, Molokai, Hawaii
Crab spider hanging on to a rain covered web, Molokai, Hawaii
One Alii Beach Park, Molokai, Hawaii
One Alii Beach Park, Molokai, Hawaii
Broken fence and vibrant field, Molokai, Hawaii
Broken fence and vibrant field, Molokai, Hawaii
Dead red car, Molokai, Hawaii
Dead red car, Molokai, Hawaii

Molokai, Hawaii, photography workshop – arrival day

A cacophony of birds awoke me on the island of Molokai this morning.  Exquisite morning light whispered through the Koa trees as a wind chime sounded out its unpredictable melody to the day.  This is my fifth year helping to teach Rekindling The Creative Spirit with Rikki Cooke, Dewitt Jones and Theresa Airey, and like fine wine, the workshop gets better with each passing year.  One of my favorite things about arrival day is hearing Bronwyn Cooke sing.  This year her daughter Heather joined in.  Click below to listen.

Coming Through the Atmosphere

Moomomi at sunrise, Molokai, Hawaii.
Moomomi at sunrise, Molokai, Hawaii.

My week of helping teach the photography workshop at the Hui Ho’olana on Molokai with fellow instructors, Rikki Cooke, Dewitt Jones and Theresa Airey has drawn to a close and I can feel the gravity of the mainland pulling me back into its orbit. Leaving the slow pace of life on Molokai to return to the mainland must be similar to the feeling astronauts have as they re-enter the earth’s atmosphere with the heat shield of their spacecrafts burning white-hot. It’s a feeling of excitement and terror at the same time.

For the past few years, Bronwyn Cooke has been trying to convince me to bring my violin out from the mainland. I guess she got sick of waiting, because yesterday in the mail a package containing a brand new violin from the Czech republic arrived, and this evening a group of ukulele players appeared on the front porch of the Hui around the time the sun was setting over the ocean to play some songs. My rusty fingers were able to remember a few notes and I have posted the result here for your listening pleasure. The violin has been dubbed “Jonathans Fiddle” and will be waiting here for my return. Thank you Bronwyn!

Click the play button below to listen: