"We have a great love and respect for all styles of Hawaiian music," Pali said. "But we also grew up with very diverse influences like the Eagles, the Beatles and Van Halen. Just being considered for a GRAMMY(R) is truly an honor!"
Although the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences GRAMMY(R) awards show takes place in February, the race leading up to it begins in October. "Last year was the 47th Annual GRAMMY(R) awards, the first time the Hawaiian category was presented," noted Alan Foster of the GRAMMY(R) Foundation. "This year will be our 48th annual awards. The category is (officially) called 'Best Hawaiian Album.' Ballots just went out to our voters."
When GRAMMY(R) voters receive the hardcopy ballot, they then "go online to view the entries," submitted by voting members and others (such as non-member record companies). "They have a chance to vote for up to five in each category," Foster explained. Five is the GRAMMY(R) magic number leading up to the December 8th official announcement, in all 107 categories, that serves up excitement for the music industry's biggest night of the year slated for February.
This year, the hunt for 'Best Hawaiian Album' may have a ringer in the unassuming sextet, if John D'Agostino, writer/reviewer for Taylor Guitars magazine, is to be believed. "Pali and 'In Harmony' exemplify rich fusion... their versatility is augmented by guest 'ringers' Damien Freitas, Jay Kauka II, John Keawe, and Auntie Genoa Keawe (no relation to John)... The rainbow of material on 'In Harmony' takes daubs of color from Hawai'i's diverse folk-based pop palette... lovingly recorded on Taylor guitars... the guys even find a way to make WAR's 'All Day Music' sound Pacific in origin."
'Slack Key' style guitarist John Keawe was featured on the debut GRAMMY(R) winning Hawaiian CD "Slack Key Guitar Vol. 2" in 2004. Auntie Genoa is a Hall of Famer in Hawaiian music and has been honored with a National Heritage Fellowship (folk arts top nod) awarded by the National Endowment for the Arts. She has also won multiple Na Hoku Hanohano awards, the Hawaiian recording industry's GRAMMY equivalent. Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann held a ceremony for PALI this summer and presented the band with a special proclamation for their musicianship and local acclaim.
With so many popular cliches about Hawai'i and its music, from Elvis in 'Blue Hawai'i' to Marilyn Monroe's brush with learning the ukulele, PALI also offers an antidote to the constant diet of New Age-meets-pop hybrid tunes. For PALI's composition and local hit song 'Island Days' on 'In Harmony', he said, "I knew that I wanted a beautiful slack key guitar part behind the gentle vocals/harmonies and knew that one person in particular would understand the feeling (of longing) and inspiration behind it. That could only be John Keawe.
"One way people could think of us is 'different beach, new boys.' We are all about the harmonies and the acoustic guitars making everything shine," Pali said. "After all, isn't it worthwhile to add a little sunshine in life when you look at the alternatives?"
Should they garner the next GRAMMY(R) for the category, you can download free tracks in advance at www.pali.net and vote for yourself. For more information about PALI or upcoming performance dates, call 310-430-8381.