What the Heck?
COURTESY OF SUSIE LIN
Rock drummer Carmine Appice played with the HPU Sea Warrior Pep Band last weekend. Note trash can at lower right.
Monster drummer bangs at HPU, Pipeline
"When was the last time you attended pep band practice?" I asked Carmine Appice.
"In 1964, when I was in junior high school," said the first of the monster rock drummers. Appice provided the percussive pyrotechnics for Vanilla Fudge, Rod Stewart, Jeff Beck and Ozzy Osbourne.
Appice's textbook, "Realistic Rock Drumming," has sold 400,000 copies. He gives drum clinics -- but none like the one last weekend. He had the entire 40-piece HPU Pep Band blowing down the walls of the old Blaisdell Hotel dining room, now called the Sea Warrior Center.
With Appice sitting at the traps, the band ripped through half a dozen numbers. By the explosive finale, Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger," the brass was blasting, and the entire Sea Warrior rhythm section banging up a storm. In the back row, the young ladies of the flute section had their fingers in their ears.
"Man, that rocked." I think that's what Appice said. My ears were ringing.
Bang a Can: Ever walk down Fort Street Mall, carrying a trash can? You get looks.
In addition to drums, Carmine Appice plays everything from toolboxes to, well, trash cans. So Sea Warrior band leader Patrick Hennessy had obliged him at practice with a brand-new trash can from City Mill.
After band practice, Appice needed the can carted to Pipeline Cafe, but had no room in his car. So I horsed the shiny metal can down Fort Street Mall and six floors up the parking garage elevator to my car.
Catching the same elevator, ESPN Radio's Chase Kaiuwailani squinted at the can. "I always knew you were Oscar the Grouch," he said.
When I got to Pipeline, who should be sneaking out the back door for a smoke but Hawaii's darling, Raiatea Helm.
Turned out Appice was meeting another of rock's classic drummers, Mick Fleetwood, whose Island Rumours Band, which includes Helm, was playing that night. "You have to come to the concert," said Raiatea. "What's with the trash can?"
Great concert. At the end of a long drum solo by Fleetwood, Appice suddenly appeared on stage, unannounced, with the trash can, on which he gave a remarkably convincing percussive performance, splintering his drum sticks.
"Oh Lord," said Fleetwood afterward. "I just got trashed by a garbage can."
Barack Obama's graduation photo from his 1979 high school graduation at the Blaisdell.
Barack Obama's on the cover of GQ this month. The article includes a time line of Obama's life in pictures, including one of the candidate "graduating from Harvard Law School, 1991."
Ron Jacobs of whodaguyhawaii.com has sharp eyes. I was chatting with him on his Internet broadcast, when he said, "Wait a minute. Nobody graduates from Harvard Law wearing a maile lei, a buff-and-blu tie and shaking the hand of (former Punahou president) Rod McPhee." It's clearly Obama's 1979 high school graduation, at the Blaisdell.
Pigskin Mele: "What a rush!" said Jerome Koko of the Makaha Sons. The Sons, plus Hoku Zuttermeister and Ioane Burns, donned New England Patriot jerseys and sang the national anthem before last Sunday's Patriots-Bills NFL football game. "A sell-out, 70,000 people," says Koko. "Better than walking on stage at Carnegie Hall."
"We didn't sing anything else but the anthem," said Koko. Given the Patriots' recent video-scapades, perhaps they should have sung a chorus or two of "Your Cheatin' Heart."
Woof: Dog Chapman, Beth and the posse begin filming their next season tomorrow, after months of book tours. The show is without a full-time producer, former producer Lucas Platt having succumbed to the strain of the reality series and dealing with Dog and Beth.
There's only a single appeal by Mexican prosecutors still clouding Dog's legal horizons. "Mexico has been a horrible strain on them," said one insider, "but those headlines made the show's ratings even better and pushed Dog's book to No. 1 on the best-seller list."
Ukulele Pentagon: Eddie Kamae is just back from a whirlwind trip to Washington, D.C., to receive a National Heritage Lifetime Award from the National Endowment for the Arts. With the award ceremony, various receptions and an award concert, there were only a few hours for sightseeing.
So what did Eddie see? "I didn't want to go to the president's house," he said. Instead, he ended up at the Pentagon, to get a personally guided tour from Isaac Ho'opi'i, the Waianae-raised Pentagon security guard who was awarded a Congressional Medal of Valor for rescuing eight co-workers on Sept. 11, 2001.
"Great hero, nice guy," said Eddie, who ended up jamming that evening with Ho'opi'i's Washington-based group, the Aloha Boys.
Wedding Blues: Among the fashionistas in little black dresses at last Thursday's Chanel party was TV producer Julie Aragaki. "You have to write about 'Wedding of a Lifetime,'" she said. "It's the coolest show ever."
OC16 and Hawaii Bride & Groom Magazine are giving away an entire December wedding, from engagement ring to honeymoon. The three finalists will be featured in an OC16 special tomorrow night.
Viewers with a digital remote can vote for the winner, but prepare to have your heartstrings tugged. One finalist from Hilo just recovered from a rare blood disease. The Upcountry Maui finalist lost the brother, who was to give her away, in a car accident. The last, from Kihei, is a breast cancer survivor.
"Sad stories," said Aragaki, "but good sad stories. Their fiances stuck by them."