Thursday, March 6, 2003

Roland and Robert Cazimero add a little pop to their repertoire tomorrow night.

Localizing the Beach Boys

The Cazimeros remake
the 1964 hit "Fun Fun Fun,"
adding Hawaii locations and
three verses of their own

By John Berger

While Robert and Roland Cazimero purposely stay away from covering Hawaiian songs long associated with some of our legendary musicians like Gabby Pahinui and Auntie Genoa Keawe, the brothers have done their own unique take on a couple of carefully selected American pop songs.

In concert

The Brothers Cazimero:

Where: Hawaii Theatre
When: 8 p.m. tomorrow
Tickets: $30
Call: 528-0506
Also: Tickets go on sale March 15 for the brothers' 26th Annual May Day Concert at the Waikiki Shell on Thursday, May 1. $25 reserved-seat and $15 general tickets will be available at the Blaisdell Arena box office and all TicketPlus outlets. Also charge by phone at 526-4400 and online at

Take "Fun Fun Fun," the Beach Boys' 1964 hit that is one of their newest finds. The duo featured it last Friday on a segment of the KITV morning news show and will be doing it again tomorrow during their concert at the Hawaii Theatre.

"I don't like the idea of doing covers, but we kick around all kinds of ideas," Robert said during a quick Tuesday morning meeting in the offices of the Mountain Apple Co.

"I can see (doing) it onstage, but not necessarily to record. I think that that's the real easy way out, but it's been in the back of my mind for years, and we were looking for something new for our album. It started with that premise, and then what helped to validate it a little more was New Year's Eve, when the Beach Boys were here. It gives us a good story line to use in the show.

"If you're gonna make a remake, you better make sure that it's good, or don't even go near it. We needed it to make sense (as a Cazimero song), and it went by too fast," Roland added, explaining why the Cazimeros' version has three additional verses and makes references to local places.

"You could repeat it, but that doesn't make it local, (but) if she's cruising down the highway headed for Waimea Bay, right away you know it's Hawaii. We hope it works -- we think it does, anyway, so who cares?"

Robert says that they've had a great time working up their Beach Boys segment for the show tomorrow night. He also finds it gratifying that although the Beach Boys' songs were dismissed as rubbish back in the 1960s, their perfect pop songs have been re-evaluated as the decades have passed.

"That the music has continued to survive to this day is a testament to them and to the music, and that happens to be what we think we stand for, too. In the end we're all beach boys and babes!"

THE BROTHERS' reluctance to record cover versions doesn't keep them from enjoying the standards. Their eyes twinkled when they talked about the comic hapa-haole song that'll be on the program tomorrow, and the guest artist who'll be performing it.

The song is "Ala Moana Annie with Her Enormous Fanny," and the guest, Loretta Ables Sayre.

"No one would think she'd do a song like that, but she can, she can do almost anything, but it was really Roland's idea to call Loretta," Robert said as he and Roland choked back their laughter and sang a verse from the song:

"Ala Moana Annie / with her enormous fanny / She does the hula for you / and you / and you / And if you give her brandy / she'll shake it mighty handy ..."

"It was a real hot number for comic dancers," Robert added. "I don't think (our dancer, Leina'ala Kalama Heine) will be doing it real soon, though, (but) we Hawaiians love 'em any size."

In other matters, the brothers' upcoming May Day concert signals a new beginning for them. The working title for the event is apparently "Let the Next Quarter Century Begin!" but Robert and Roland refer to it as "Year 1," since they see it as such after all the hoopla that surrounded last year's show and the subsequent release of a commemorative DVD.

Robert sees it as a time of rebirth. "After 25 years of May Day, we're going to go back to No. 1, square one. It's rebirth time, new things, new ideas, and the theme for Roland and me is 'Starting All Over Again' (by Mel & Tim). I don't think we'll open the show with it, but it will definitely be somewhere near the front of the show. Maybe we'll start with that tape of Israel (Kamakawiwo'ole) singing it."

And there'll almost certainly be a big salute to the Beach Boys, featuring the men of Robert's Halau Na Kamalei and the women of kumu hula Heine's Pualei O Liko Lehua.

Roland even sounds serious about borrowing an idea or two from the original 1978 show.

"Maybe we can come in again in a helicopter!"

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