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Ho'okena evolves into a trio with Manu Boyd's departure

By Wayne Harada

LAST UPDATED: 01:37 a.m. HST, Oct 28, 2012

Ho‘okena, the sweet-voiced Hawaiian group, is undergoing change with the departure of Manu Boyd. So the newly refined Ho‘okena will carry on as a trio, with remainees Chris Kamaka, Glen Smith and Horace Dudoit III. It already has completed a solo CD titled "Huliau," due for iTunes release in early November followed by aphysical album by month's end. The CD title fittingly translates to "a time of change," "a turning point," "past recollection."

"We sound pretty good," said Dudoit, even with one voice less. "It has been a very exciting, creative and a learning time for us, and I feel that we have adapted very well as a trio and have found our groove to take this sound to another level."

The CD will be half-Hawaiian, half-Christmas, a likely contender for holiday gift giving, and blessed with informed liner notes by Louis "Moon" Kauakahi of The Makaha Sons. …

Rumors about Boyd's "firing" are false; he elected to bow out, working on a solo CD and career. …

Dudoitwas hobbling on a crutch when I ran into him at Martin Nievera's recent benefit concert at the Magic of Polynesian showroom. The workplace injury (Dudoit is a26-year veteran at the U.S. post office at the airport) required surgery to repair a tear in the meniscus in his right knee, so he could be off his job for at least six weeks. …

STAR WATCH: The aforementioned Nievera endeavor, with Philippines comic Ai Ai de las Alas, was a rouser, with Nievera displaying his marquee magic, particularly with an a cappella "This Is the Moment." I asked the locally bred Philippines superstar how come no music — just voice? "It was an accident," he said of this precious moment. "I forgot to include (the tracks), so I sang it (without music)," said Nievera. See my blog for a full review. …

Hawaii superstarBette Midler again will stage "Hulaween" this Halloween at the Waldorf Astoria in the Big Apple. A roster of celebs, decked in spooky finery, will convene to help the Divine Miss M raise funds for the New York Restoration Project. …

Midler and Billy Crystal play Fresno grandparents babysitting in "Parental Guidance," due Christmas Day. Sounds like a laugh riot. …

Yep, Jon Hamm and Jessica Pare of AMC's "Mad Men" were filming at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel and other Waikiki locales last week. See the results on the Season 6 premiere. …

ALL IN THE OHANA: It's a busy time for Manoa DNA, the family trio comprising dad Lloyd Kawakami and sons Nick and Alex Kawakami. They just returned from Kyushu on a performing tour with Raiatea Helm, Jeff Peterson, Dean Taba and Aureana Tseu in Ureshino City (known for its onsen, or hot springs, as well as ashiyu, or foot baths). They gathered at the ashiyu for drinks one night and a kanikapila resulted with Peterson playing a local's guitar and another local playing shakuhachi. …

Manoa DNA, in the midst of doing another album, will embark on a fall tour of Sapporo, Nagoya, Osaka and Tokyo. …

And Nick Kawakami has been immersed in a new KFVE series, "HI*Sessions," airing 7 to 9 p.m. Fridays through Nov. 9 (it launched this past Friday). Skylar Kamaka, Miss Hawaii 2012, emcees and four weekly segments focus on isle musicians and more. …

HERE 'N' THERE: Kerri Walsh, Olympic gold medalist in beach volleyball, dined solo at the Hilton Hawaiian Village's Bali-by-the-Sea, hapai (and showing) and happy to be. She graciously obliged with autographs, according to restaurant G.M. Alicia G. Antonio. …

Agnes Kimura, Japan's top Hawaiian music artist and slack-key guitarist, will be among the performers in today's Hawaii Slack Key Guitar Festival, Westside Style, at Hoalauna Park in Ewa Beach. Her new CD, "Nani Ahiahi," is the real deal — nothing foreign about her approach to singing and strumming. …

And that's "Show Biz." …

Wayne Harada is a veteran entertainment columnist; reach him at 266-0926 or wayneharada@gmail.com; read his Show and Tell Hawaii blog at www.staradvertiser.com.

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