Softly psychedelic folk, soul, rare groove from the Hawaiian islands.
Few labels are as committed to uncovering old and new sounds from their local scene than Honolulu-based Aloha Got Soul. Since 2010, the blog-turned-label has explored every corner of the Hawaiian islands for lost gems, including now-classic releases from Macky Feary Band, Nohelani Cypriano, Lemuria, and Mike Lundy. While the label’s sound is rooted in a sort of ‘70s and ‘80s tropical rare groove, they’ve also championed deeper sounds from Hawaii’s rich musical history with folk, reggae, new age, and psychedelic rock.
For an introduction to the label and the perfectly mellow sounds of the islands, check out their “softly psychedelic” compilation From These Shores, curated by Roger Bong and Oliver Seguin.
The label also recently launched AGS Honolulu, a record shop “celebrating homegrown local music,” which seems to have quickly become a hub for local record collectors, musicians, and artists. Recent posts show local legends frequently showing up to the store to share stories, dig through records, and discuss ideas for the future of Hawaiian music.
This Friday, Aloha Got Soul’s chief archivist Don Hernandez, aka Vinyl Don, will be joining us for a dedicated listening session at Neuehouse. For a sampler of what’s to come, we asked Don to share five selections with us.
Mofoya – Climb The Highest Peak (1979)
Recorded on Big Island in 1979, this has powerful and experimental psych energy — and was a big influence on me digging deeper into the islands.
These Trails – Of Broken Links (1973)
Cut Chemist and Terry Robinson introduced me to this masterpiece many years ago.
Ervin & Lani Groves – Welcome To Paradise (1970)
This one goes out to Roger and Oliver, my partners in digging/crime on Oahu! The sweetest soul from Paradise.
Ray Peralta – Going On
Sole album and lost treasure from guitarist and singer-songwriter Ray Peralta.
Annabelle McBride – Tropical Magic (1983)
Not a native Hawaiian, Anne loved the music dearly and created many dreamy slack key instrumentals to show her appreciation.