Wood Craft

By Ben Wood

Saturday, April 11, 1998



Big band docks at
the Pier Bar

THE Jazz Hawaii Big Band opened a Monday nighter at the Aloha Tower's Pier Bar this week and the hard-driving, swinging aggregation blew the joint away. Deshannon Higa's tight band of merry men romp through standards by Basie, Ellington, Porter, Gershwin and Monk. The boys really cut loose on fast ones. Higa's hot trumpet and the rhythm section of drummer Noel Okimoto, pianist Jim Howard, bassist J.R. Erb and guitarist Gilbert Batangan are impressive. I'll be returning ...

Murchie wins with meatloaf

IT'S fitting Coldwell Banker's Margaret Murchie won the top prize at Mari Frey's fashion show at the Kahala Mandarin Thursday, as she marks a birthday Tuesday. Margaret won a $50 gift certificate at Rolf Winkler's Patisserie by saying meatloaf is the most popular menu item at Rolf's Kahala spot. Murchie's correct answer was cheered by her visiting parents, Don and Helen Murchie of Canada, and gal pals Rachel Simmons, Mihana Souza, Pahl Newlon, Vicki DeVille, Myra Brandt, Yvonne Hepton, Dale Finlay, Thelma Gretzinger and Patty Resnick ...

DONNA KAHAKUI will create awareness of Kai Makana, a marine wildlife conservation group, by paddling 72 miles in a canoe from Kaanapali, Maui, to Hilton Hawaiian Village Beach. Donna starts Friday and should arrive anytime from 10 a.m. on the next day. A party at HHV's Tropics will follow her arrival. Also, "An Evening Under the Stars" will be held April 25 at the Waikiki Aquarium, with food by Jeremiah Tower of Stars in S.F. and Kahala Moon's Kelvin Ro. Jerry Santos & Olomana, Teresa Bright and Roland Cazimero will take part. Call 949-0033 for $75 tickets ...

BUGS BUNNY and Tweety from the Warner Bros. Studio Store will help Gov. Ben and Vicky Cayetano celebrate Easter with isle kids at Washington Place tomorrow. Christie Adams will play the accordion ... There'll be magic in the air with Penn & Teller at the Hawaii Theatre Friday and next Saturday ...The benefit wine celebration and dinner for Rehab Hospital are April 18-19 at the Hilton Village, not the dates listed here last week ...

IN THE '70s, Richard Wong opened the Gold Coin Lounge on Kapiolani. The late Hawaiian activist George Helm and Homer Hu sang there. Wong has found tapes of the duo and has put them on a CD. The disc will feature 35 Hawaiian and hapa-haole songs ... I don't mean to take anything away from the dancers with the Honolulu Symphony last Sunday, but I think Maestro Sam Wong had the best movements on the Concert Hall stage as he whipped the band to majestic climaxes on big numbers ...

"BAYWATCH" star David Hasselhoff and Saban Entertainment's Haim Saban, creator of "The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers," dined at Sam Choy's Kahalui with their families ... The Mid-Pacific Open starts with a Pro-Am Wednesday ...

Denny, 87, wins applause

PIANIST Martin Denny, who turned 87 yesterday, and percussionist Augie Colon took part in two star-studded L.A. shows put on by the Starkey Hearing Foundation last weekend. Performers included Michael Bolton, Dionne Warwick, the Doobie Brothers, Pam Tillis, Chaka Khan, Phoebe Snow, Freda Payne and Bobby Brown. When Marty's age was announced, the audience and 43-piece orchestra applauded. Marty and Augie were given state of the art hearing aids by Starkey. Marty said they and wives, June Denny and Phyllis Colon, received VIP treatment. The Dennys' daughter, Christina Richards, was there from Oregon and the Colons' son, Kekoa, came from San Diego ...



Ben Wood, who sold the Star-Bulletin in the streets
of downtown Honolulu during World War II, writes of people,
places and things every Saturday.






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