Friday, March 11, 2005


Carey Sladé (pronounced Sla-day) will perform a little bit of blues, alternative country, folk and rock music from 7:45 to 8:15 p.m. Saturday.

Giving back
in a ‘Jam’

When Lora "ralo" Heiniemi moved back to the mainland from Honolulu seven years ago, she made a promise both to herself and the community she had come to adore.

"I said I wouldn't come back here until I could bring something," she recalled while sitting under a tree at the University of Hawaii at Manoa last week. "I'm not from here, and I wasn't born here, but I love this place."

We be jammin'

"Earth Mother Mind Jam 16"

Where: Anna Bananna's, 2440 S. Beretania St.

When: 4 p.m. Saturday

Cover: $10 (partial proceeds benefit Youth Speaks Hawaii); 18 and over

Call: 946-5190

Info: www.themindjam.com

This weekend, Heiniemi returns to the islands to present "Earth Mother Mind Jam 16," a showcase of independent artists from both the mainland and Hawaii. She's produced music festivals in Arizona and her home state of Minnesota, and hopes to branch out here to give back to the local scene.

"My goal is to help independent artists be able to play at different locations and help build their careers," she said. "Sometimes a festival atmosphere can really help catapult things."

BORN AND raised in St. Cloud, Minn., Heiniemi began her musical career in 1984 after moving to Phoenix. Soon after her arrival, the desire to act was replaced by one to play instruments.

Although she typically plays the bass guitar during solo gigs these days, Heiniemi also knows how to play the drums, dreampipe, melodica and saxophone.

Performing runs in her family -- father Larry, who currently resides in Hawaii, was a favorite of professional wrestling fans who knew him as "Luscious" Lars Anderson and a founding member of the original Four Horsemen.

Luckily, she chose a profession that required a lot less physical contact.

"This is my passion," she said of playing music and promoting. "I love the arts ... I love the poets, the dancers and I see the joy that it brings to them."

THE FIRST "Earth Mother Mind Jam" took place in 1989, after Heiniemi noticed there weren't a lot of family-oriented events for musicians.

"I would usually end up playing with guys who had wives or girlfriends," she said. "Oftentimes, those folks didn't get to come out to the festivals because they were at home."

Except for a hiatus in 2001, the festival has taken place yearly at various locations in Arizona and Minnesota. As much as possible, she tries to host it at a venue that can accommodate both young and old.

It definitely isn't a money-making venture, but Heiniemi continues to press ahead with efforts to expand; the Honolulu "Mind Jam" is the second one to be produced during 2005.

"It's real important for artists to get out there ... and connect with audiences," she said. "Traveling on your own, no one knows who you are and it takes a long time to build things that way."

Besides live performances, each festival provides an opportunity to network with other musicians. Local acts are strongly encouraged to come by Anna's and introduce themselves.

"I'm very into that," she said. "Not to be strange or anything, but a lot of it is the universe connecting things and you just being willing to listen."

Most of the mainland bands making the trip this week are doing it on their own dime, and they aren't getting paid to play, either. The "Earth Mother Mind Jam" is a grassroots effort, and Heiniemi is too busy focusing on getting things done instead of just waiting for them to happen.

"Financially, it's been an adventure," she admits. "I'm not getting rich in the material aspect, but there are definitely rewards."

Schedule of performances

4 p.m.: Opening ceremony
4:15 p.m.: Rebecca Heidelberg (spoken word)
4:30 p.m.: Jade Louie (Hawaiian / country)
5 p.m.: Akaloka (spoken word)
5:15 p.m.: Mary Godfrey (soul / folk)
5:30 p.m.: Jesus Basuel (writer / director / producer)
5:45 p.m.: ralö (soul / punk)
6 p.m.: Manasseh Bernal (alt / folk)
6:15 p.m.: Max (hip-hop)
6:45 p.m. Scotty Rock -N- Roll (alt rock)
7 p.m.: Flightdog (hip-hop)
7:30 p.m.: Russell (blues)
7:45 p.m.: Sladé (blues / alt country / folk / rock)
8:30 p.m.: Stephanie Dickinson
9 p.m.: Fleeting Trance (alt everything)
10 p.m.: Kapilina Fire Dance
10:30 p.m.: Sea (hip-hop theater and spoken word)
11 p.m.: The Overtones (intonation reggae and pop)
12 a.m.: HawaiiSlam Poets (spoken word)
12:30 a.m.: Technologist PHD (hip-hop)
1 a.m.: Lumenz (hip-hop)
1:30 a.m.: Turtle Magnet (audience inspired improv)

Note: Califonia-based artist Neal Barbosa will paint throughout the evening

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