KĀNE`OHE, HAWAI`I – The Ola Ka `Āina CD project is comprised of 13 original compositions gifted by award-winning artists for the purpose of restoring Hawai`i’s native forests. Never before heard music by Willie K., Kapena, Ben & Maila, Kenneth Makuakāne and more can be found on this full-length album. All proceeds from album sales will go to Saving Hawai`i’s Forests, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to planting endemic Hawaiian plants and trees that will live out their lives in a native Hawaiian forest.
In 2014, Joe and Kristen Souza, founders of Kanile`a `Ukulele, acquired land in Kealakekua, Hawai`i at the 4,000 foot elevation level to begin reforestation efforts. In 2017, they doubled their acreage to accommodate the thousands of koa, `iliahi (Hawaiian sandalwood) and other endemic Hawaiian trees to be planted. The Souzas, with their three sons, have embraced the `ōlelo no`eau (wise saying) ola ka `āina, ola ke kānaka. When the land lives, the people live.
“This simple thought alone is what drives us to reforest Hawai`i,” says master luthier Joe Souza who creates world-class `ukulele. “Taking is an easy thing to do,” Souza continues, “we take what we need to live and to provide. Giving should be just as important. For Kanile`a `Ukulele, our most important material, the wood to build, comes from the `āina…the land. So giving back to the `āina just makes sense.” 1n 2016, the Souzas made the commitment that for every Kanile`a built, a koa tree is planted. These trees will be protected, maintained and allowed to flourish without threat of clear cutting or invasive species. When Kanile`a `ukulele artists heard about this, they wanted to know how they, too, could help. Thus, the Ola Ka `Āina CD project was born.
Ola Ka `Āina is available in hard copy with a full-color booklet including lyrics and translations. Copies can be obtained at Kanile`a `Ukulele in Kāne`ohe or online via mele.com. Digital downloads can also be purchased via kanileaukulele.com.
About Kanile`a `Ukulele:
Husband-wife team Joe and Kristen Souza founded Kanile`a `Ukulele in July of 1998. Joe apprenticed under master luthier Peter Bermodez, learning “uncle Pete’s” traditional Hawaiian building techniques while working to integrate today’s 21st century technologies. This mash up of old and new has proven effective in creating a full-bodied, rich sound that is distinctive of these playable masterpieces. All Kanile`a instruments are handcrafted in the Souzas’ hometown of Kāne`ohe, Hawai`i. Kristen oversees administrative operations, retail sales and dealer support. Together, the Souzas employ a team of expert artisans, retail salespeople and admin staff members.
Kanile`a `ukulele are available worldwide through authorized dealers and directly from the factory. For more details or to meet the team on a Kanile`a tour, call (808) 234-2868 or visit kanileaukulele.com.
For interviews and information, please contact:
Lina Langi, Public Relations
46-216 Kahuhipa Street #3
Kāne`ohe, HI 96744