My dear friend, mentor and kupuna, Hawaiian musician Braddah Smitty has departed his kino (body). Uncle Smitty, I love you. The times we shared will stay with me always. You taught me the most important thing in life: Mahalo ke Akua (thank you to the Source of Creation). Give my aloha to Uncle Sonny, Pops, and for goodness sake behave yourself up dea
This photo is from February 2012 in Laupahoehoe. Smitty had not been well but he mustered the mana to join me onstage singing “Kanaka Wai Wai”. It would be his final performance.
In my life, I have been so blessed to connect with our Kupuna (elders) just moments before they depart; from Uncle Sonny Chillingworth to Uncle Raymond Kane, from Tau Moe to Bill Tapia, from Braddah Iz to Auntie Genoa Keawe; what a privilege it has been to share in their presence. Mahalo ke Akua for guiding me to them. I will continue to share what they have taught me. ~Makana