Barry Flanagan is a singer-songwriter, musician and founder of the acclaimed World Music group HAPA. Flanagan is known for his guitar and songwriting skills, vocal performances and ocean awareness projects. In 1980, Flanagan moved to Hawaii to research and study the art of Kiho ‘Alu, or Slack Key Guitar and Haku Mele composition. It was after hearing the music of American musician and film score composer Ry Cooder with legendary Slack Key master Gabby Pahinui that inspired Flanagan’s sojourn in Hawai’i to explore and learn these two art forms. Flanagan immersed himself in Hawaiian culture and art, seeking out native speakers, teachers and composers of Hawaiian songs, passionately studying indigenous art forms with Maui as the backdrop. In 1983 Flanagan founded a musical duo on Maui, naming it “HAPA,” the Hawaiian word meaning “half” and also used to describe people of mixed Pacific Island ancestry. During the next 10 years, to 1993, Flanagan raised $125,000 to write and produce what was described as “…a first-class recording that would change the way people out of the state of Hawai’i perceive Hawaiian Music.” (Lahaina News).
Kenneth Makuakāne is recognized as the producer of producers of Hawaiian music. He has recorded many groups, including Nā Leo Pilimehana, HAPA, Amy Hānaiali’i Gilliom, Obrian Eselu, Raiatea Helm and the Pandanus Club. To date, Kenneth has produced over one hundred thirty albums, many of which have been successful albums for their record companies. As a multi-instrumentalist, he has been on hundreds of recording projects. He has produced many hallmark albums for the prestigious educational institution Kamehameha Schools; the historical Baibala Hemolele project which created an audio library of the first written document in Hawaiian language back in 1820; and the groundbreaking Disney music project where he was chosen to produce the hit Disney classics such as “When You Wish Upon A Star”, “Theme from Pochahontas” and others with a Hawaiian music bed, translated and sung in the Hawaiian language. Kenneth’s son Pono will be joining him at the Lynden Music Festival as well!