Opihi Pickers’ ‘long and significant break’ is friendly
AFTER MORE than a decade of playing music together, the Opihi Pickers
have announced plans to take a "long and significant break" starting in June.
"They all still get along great, so it isn't anything like that," said band spokesman Brett Ortone in response to questions via e-mail. "These guys are all very close."
There are absolutely no hard feelings, according to Ortone, and lead singer Imua Garza is adamant about the time off being just a break that will allow everyone to "explore other musical avenues for a while." Rumor has it that Garza and his wife, Tiffa Cruz Garza, have signed with a new label that's based on the mainland.
Garza will also remain involved with his bandmates as a producer. Bass player Kahale Morales migrated to the group Rebel Souljahz, who enlisted Garza to help with their debut, "Nothing to Hide," released last month. Garza is also set to produce the next project from solo artist Kaipo, which will feature Morales and Hoku Garza as studio musicians. Fourth Opihi Picker Kevin Okimoto plans a solo project.
"The band has always had a solid foundation ... and will remain good friends," Ortone said. "I wouldn't be surprised if they reunited sooner rather than later."
In the meantime, the Opihi Pickers plan to release a greatest hits album next month that includes two new tracks as an added bonus. They'll say farewell with performances at Andrews Amphitheater on April 25 and Ryan's Grill on June 4 ...
CLUB KIDS were shocked to learn of promoter Komo Low's death last month.
Most associate him with the hugely successful launch of the W Honolulu's Wonderlounge parties. He was also one of the original partners in the party that's now known as SKYLiNE, and was involved with various other upscale events before dropping out of the spotlight in 2005.
I'm told Low returned to Honolulu about a year ago after spending some time in California, but little else is being said publicly. Friends and fellow promoters Flash Hansen and Matty Hazelgrove attempted to schedule a memorial fundraiser for this weekend, but Low's family asked them to cancel.
Services are scheduled for 11:30 a.m. March 28 at Mililani Mortuary-Waipio, Mauka Chapel; visitation will start at 9:30.
Rest in peace, Komo ...
CONCERT NEWS: Nobody can forget that 50 Cent is coming to Honolulu on March 28, but don't sleep on another mainland rapper set to play Pipeline Cafe on Easter Sunday. Flo Rida will headline 102.7 Da Bomb's Spring Break Jump Off on March 23, featuring openers the Hawaii-Yay-Hittaz and DJs Sane720 and Ill Phil. Call 296-1027 ... After blogging about Sean Kingston's upcoming Maui appearance, I knew opening act (and frequent visitor) Collie Buddz couldn't stay away from Oahu. He'll be joined by Hot Rain, J Boog and Young Fya during the Angel Magik Spring Break Bash at Pipeline on March 29 ... Jack Johnson's upcoming Kokua Festival means Matt Costa will be back in town, and that means another side gig at NextDoor. He'll be joined by Micha Wolfe in Chinatown on April 15; doors open at 7 p.m. The night will also feature artwork by RVCA's Ben Horton, Retna and Revok and photos by mainland partyrazzi Mark "The Cobrasnake" Hunter ...
WEEKEND PICKS: Brew Moon reintroduces late night entertainment this week, with DJ Peter Lau spinning on select Fridays. Upcoming dates are March 28, April 4, April 18 and May 2. Big kids 21-and-over will enjoy $1 shot and $2 beer specials all night ... F&M Present return to a weekly Friday party on Oahu for the first time since the demise of the Pussycat Lounge. The Candy Bar starts tonight at Pearl Ultra Lounge, with the guys maintaining their weekly party, Release, on Kauai as well ... ICON Sport returns to the Blaisdell Arena for the first time in 2008 with a full night of MMA action on Saturday. Local boy Kala "Kolohe" Hose will face off against Phil Baroni in the main event, with both fighters expected at an official afterparty that night at Cirque Hawaii ...