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Waikiki '73: That is Jesse Kalima and Family

LAST UPDATED: 2:21 p.m. HST, Aug 21, 2012

Margo Kalima Mortensen wrote in to identify her father, ukulele great Jesse Kalima. Jesse is on the left, followed by his children Andrea Kalima Lopez, Dana Kalima, his wife Dorothy Kalima and Kaliko Kalima-Salcedo. The photo by Eric Yanagi was taken at their home at 256 Wai Nani Way in Waikiki where they lived from 1942 to about 1978.


If you can identify anyone in these photos, email

PICS: Waikiki '73, Part 1

PICS: Waikiki '73, Part 2

PICS: Waikiki '73, Part 3

Andre Lopez: "It was a gathering place for entertainers, movie stars, celebrities, beachboys and even a teen club called the 'Go-Getters' Club. But most importantly the neighbors and their children who loved to play music and sing along with 'Uncle Jesse.'"

Born in Honolulu in 1920, Kalima is a member of the ukulele hall of fame. He helped popularized the solo ukulele playing style. According to the website, Kalima made his first fame at age 15 winning the Hawaii amateur ukulele championship by playing the march "Stars and Stripes Forever." He went on to form The Kalima Brothers, which by the 1950s became known as "A Thousand Pounds of Melody."

Ann (Kea) Yong wrote, "My Grandma Rebecca Yabui would take us to see Uncle Jesse, Auntie Dottie. There was always music being strummed. Wonderful memories of being with gramma."

Kalima died in 1980. Dorothy Kalima is age 89 and living in Waimanalo. Mortensen added of the siblings: Andrea was a professional hula dancer and now manages a dental office in Kaneohe. Dana became a drummer and is now retired from the City. And Kaliko still works at Germaines Luau, where she has been for over 20 years.

Thank you all for your reponses.

— George F. Lee
Photo Editor, Honolulu Star-Advertiser

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