Guitar, Voice, Aloha
Pili received his first ‘ukulele at the age of five, started playing guitar when he was thirteen, and has had his head and heart full of music ever since. The songs of Hawai‘i are truly his mele aloha (beloved songs).
Pili is skilled in traditional Hawaiian music, including slack key guitar (kī hō‘alu) and vocals, and has performed solo, with Hawaiian bands, and with a number of award-winning hula troupes at concerts, hula competitions, festivals, and Hawaiian gatherings of all sorts on the West Coast and in Hawai‘i. He has worked with hālau hula such as The Ladies of Moani Ke ‘Ala O Ka Mailelauli‘i and The Men of Ka Iho Makawalu A Ka Ua Kipu‘upu‘u (Kumu Hula Clark Kahekemālamalamaika‘āina Bolivar, Jr.), Hālau Hula Nā Pua O Ka La‘akea (Kumu Hula Shawna Kealameleku‘uleialoha Alapa‘i), Ka Ua Tuahine Polynesian Dance Company (Kumu Hula Māhealani Uchiyama), Hula O Kahawai (Artistic Director Barbara Chung), and Hālau Hula Nā Pua O Hawai‘i Nei (Kumu Hula Pekelo Day). Pili has also served as cultural advisor to Nā Leo Nahenahe, the Hawaiian chorus of San Francisco.
Pili approaches Hawaiian music with the same dedication, focus, and respect that he brings to his work as a healer and teacher.
Pili performs with a beautiful cobalt-blue Emerald X20 carbon fiber guitar built by Alistair Hay and Emerald Guitars of County Donegal, Ireland.
onstage at Eugene Aloha Friday
onstage with Darlene Ahuna at the Umpqua Hula and the Arts Festival
onstage with Kumu Pekelo Day and Steve Yungen at the George Na‘ope Hula Festival
with Kumu Pekelo Day and and his hālau at the George Na‘ope Hula Festival
onstage with Kumu Pekelo Day at the George Na‘ope Hula Festival
warming up for Hi‘ikua, Eugene, Oregon
onstage at The Barn, Jacksonville, Oregon
onstage with Kumu Uluwehi Guerrero and Steve Yungen
with Kumu Uluwehi Guerrero, Steve Yungen, and Kumu Pekelo Day
kanikapila with Ka‘amea
with Pūlama at Le Bateau Ivre, Berkeley
playing for members of Kumu Pekelo Day’s Hālau Hula O Nā Pua O Hawai‘i Nei at the Umpqua Hula and the Arts Festival
“Traditional Hawaiian music expresses a love for the land, for beauty, for family and companions, for Spirit, that is deeply soulful and healing. Whether I’m singing and playing guitar for a flock of hula dancers at a festival, or softly chanting an ancient prayer as part of a healing, aloha is always at the heart of the experience.”
Visit Pili's Hawaiian Cultural Resources page for reviews of great traditional Hawaiian music, as well as books and films on Hawaiian culture, online resources, and more.