What is your personal paradise? For us, nothing beats a relaxing day spent indulging in poke bowls on Clearwater Beach. With your toes in the sand, the sun sparkling overhead, and a poke bowl perched on your lap, it’s hard to imagine how life could get any more serene. Fortunately, we’re full of great ideas, and we think one key ingredient is missing from this scenario (hint: it’s not fresh ahi tuna, we’ve got plenty of that already) — authentic Hawaiian tunes to go along with our authentic Hawaiian flavors!
In this article, we’ll cover three musicians that truly embody the spirit of Hawaiian music. Add these artists to your beach playlist next time you’re snacking on poke bowls in Clearwater and watch your worries melt away as each scrumptious bite rings with the iconic melodies of the Aloha State. Don’t forget to tag #EatKaiaBowls on Instagram to share your favorite playlist with other poke enthusiasts!
Growing up in Waikiki, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole embraced Hawaii’s unique musical identity at a young age. The slack-key guitars and ukuleles that define Hawaiian music allowed Israel to create simple yet powerful melodies that touched the hearts of people all over Hawaii, and later, all over the world. He is best known for hispopular rendition of ‘Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World’, which has been featured in several commercials and movies including 50 First Dates, Charmed, Scrubs, Glee, and more. Sadly, Israel passed away in 1997, leaving behind an enduring legacy of musical innovation and the honor of being the first Hawaiian artist to be certified platinum for his album Facing Future. Next time you’re eating poke bowls in Clearwater, dedicate a bite to this inspiring musician.
Pairs with: Apikai Bowl. Featuring fresh salmon, generous slices of avocado, a sprinkling of scallions, and a perfect mix of mango and jalapeno, the Apika Bowl is a perfect mix of traditional poke and modern culinary innovation. This combination reminds us of Israel’s unique sound, which reinvigorates qualities of traditional Hawaiian music for today’s listeners.
Keali’i Reichel was born and raised on the island of Maui, where he developed an earnest love of traditional Hawaiian chanting. He fuses this love with the sounds of contemporary Hawaiian music to bridge the gap between the younger and older generations. His first album, Kawaipunahele, was released in 1994. He reached the top spot on Billboard Chart’s Top World Music Album in 2003. Every second of Keali’i’s music bathes the listener in tranquility, making it the perfect accompaniment for those who are looking to spend the day eating poke bowls on Clearwater Beach. Fun fact: Keali’i Reichel has opened for many top artists, including LeAnn Rimes, Celine Dion, and Sting.
Pairs with: Ono Bowl. Keali’i’s use of traditional Hawaiian chanting always puts us in the mood for an Ono Bowl. With traditional ahi tuna, nori, avocado, grape tomato, cucumber, and more, the Ono Bowl is a veritable cornucopia of some of Hawaii’s best flavors, and Keali’i’s music is the perfect accompaniment.
Like many young and aspiring musicians, Jake Shimabukuro started out playing small gigs in cozy coffee shops around Honolulu. It didn’t take long for word to spread about the ukulele prodigy’s masterful performances. Soon, he was signed by Epic Records and introduced to the world at large. His videos have generated as many as 16 million views on Youtube and he has appeared on popular television programs like Good Morning America and The Today Show. He has collaborated with many popular artists like Yo-Yo Ma, Jimmy Buffet, Ziggy Marley, and Cyndi Lauper.
Pairs with: Hana Bowl. If you’re looking for some Hawaiian flare in your diet, but you aren’t ready to commit to fresh seafood, the Hana Bowl is your best option. Its delicious combination of grilled chicken, carrots, pineapple, sweet peppers, and crispy beets is anything but ordinary, which is why it pairs so well with Jake’s catalogue of generational ukulele jams that expand the boundaries of Hawaiian music.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute health advice and is not intended to be a substitute for professional dietary counsel.