Paige Okamura

Host- Bridging the Gap

Paige Okamura (DJ Mermaid) is a keiki papa of Māeaea, Waialua, Oʻahu. She's fluent in Hawaiian and is currently pursuing her MA in ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Her expertise in Hawaiian music is based out of her love for her language and her culture. She honed her expertise in Hawaiian music at KTUH FM Honolulu as the former host of the Hawaiian language show "Kīpuka Leo" before branching out to create her own bi-lingual show "Kai Leo Nui." She's also a versatile club DJ trained by our very own dj mr. nick with an eclectic, diverse musical library, and the current Tuesday night host of "Bridging The Gap."

Find her on air:
"Bridging The Gap" every Tuesday from 10PM - midnight.
"Kai Leo Nui" ever Thursday from 3-6PM on KTUH FM Honolulu

In celebration of 8 years of Bridging The Gap, I'm taking a stroll down memory lane and re-visiting some of my best shows during my tenure as one of its hosts. One of my favorite and most popular shows is the tribute to Territorial Airwaves show I did last year when the program turned 40 years old.

@margie_rice on Instagram

Keeping it low key, mellow, and smooth tonight with some of my favorite indie and soul artists. Perfect music for relaxation and reflection.  

@robwoodcoxphoto on Instagram

Sometimes, the best music is born out of social movements against injustice. Some songs even end up as rally calls or the theme song for the movement it was born of, and for future movements. Tonight we are taking a look at some of the music that born out of recent movements around the world - most of which are on-going movements that are still active today. 

Paige Okamura

It's been a little over a year since my trip to Aotearoa, which happened to be the trip I'd been dreaming of my whole life thus far. It was beautiful, enlightening, culturally enriching, and full of dairy that didn't make me sick! 

Tonight's show is volume two of Māori waiata - including a few new songs that have come out within the past year. Nau mai, haere mai, ki te pae.

Most of the music we hear today has deep roots in black culture - music made by black people - and we would be purposefully ignorant not to recognize and pay tribute to that fact. This show is definitely not finite, and could easily go on for days if not months, but it does allow me to use the two hours I have to highlight black voices both old and new.

LA Johnson/NPR

Letting the music speak for itself and keeping most of my anecdotes to myself tonight because it's not about me - it's about amplifying the voices of those who have gone unheard for generations.

For some persepective, check out this episode of Code Swtich titled, "A Decade Of Watching Black People Die".  

Tonight we're playing with the idea of "retro sound", with retro soul being the vehicle. The guiding thought is the music of today inspired by the sounds of yesterday. There's no exact formula, just a whole lotta feel.

artwork by Kevin Lau, @klhrdesign

Inspired by the May 8th episode of This American Life titled "Stuck!", which featured stories of people feeling stuck in a time when most of us "feel like we are living in a holding pattern" I wondered that feeling or concept would sound like in music form.

All of the music in tonight's show is about being stuck or feeling trapped and the various situations we find ourselves in during this stay-at-home order.

I always love finding out what my co-workers are listening to and/or what music influences their lives. The other day I asked Russell Subiono, our resident Pledge Drive guru, if he would be so kind as to curate tonight's show and he graciously accepted.

His playlist is aptly named "Memories & Roots" and the songs are nostalgic to his youth and his homeland, Waimea.

@waikapu on Instagram

As the saying goes, "May Day is Lei Day in Hawaiʻi" and it is true. Unfortunately, many Lei Day celebrations across the paeʻāina have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Yet many of us continued to celebrate in our own ways at home e kui ana, e wili ana, a e haku ana i nā ʻano lei like ʻole. Although it is Cinco de Mayo, I'm not Mexican and could never do a Cino de Mayo show justice. However, I am Hawaiian, and can give you a heck of a good lei day show, so that's what we're doing tonight!

University of Hawaiʻi Hawaiian Collection

ʻO ka wā i hala... tongiht's show is intended to transport us to the Hawaiʻi that once was in a time that seems long gone. These recordings are as old as the 1920s, and as new as the 1940s. Sounds that aren't heard anymore, I recently remarked to a good friend of mine that "I wish music still sounded like this." Can you believe, the year 1920 is exactly a century ago from today.

I love me a good cover song. To me, a really good cover song can give a song a whole new feel and make you hear it like you've never heard it before. Songs that you're used to hearing all your life suddenly become more clear in meaning when someone else sings it in their own way. For example, Nick Kurosawa's cover of Kalapana's "What Do I Do?" takes on a whole new meaning when slowed down and sung acoustic by a smooth crooner and a guitar. Somehow, the gravity of the lyrics had been lost on me all my life until Nick covered it. 

The name of the genre game tonight is indie folk rock, which is rather broad and includes music that have influences from country, blues, bluegrass, and americana. The music from tonight's show also works well as a running playlist. Trust me, I tested it out the other day and unexpectedly ran 3 miles.

 

Tonight's show is full of songs of positivity and hope for the better days to come - with a nod to Bill Withers, who recently passed away at the age of 81. All of the songs tie in to the theme through title, lyrics, or melody. I like to think of it as a playlist you can throw on when you need a little positive pick-me-up, or something to get and take a dance break to when you're feeling the stay-at-home blues.

I'm really excited to finally debut this show because it's been in the making for months. Usually we're used to hearing the ʻukulele in Hawaiian music, so to hear it used in music that's not Hawaiian, has always been pleasantly strange to me. Over the last 6 months or so, I've been collecting non-Hawaiian songs that utilize an ʻukulele in them, and this is the result.  

The music in tonight's show is a collection of the music I've been listening to and discovering while being mandated to stay put at home. It's also based off my discovery of two latin musical artists: Lido Pimienta, and the all-female mariachi band Flor de Toloache. Lots of world sounds and languages to take your mind off the current pandemic situation we're in.

Tonight's episode is co-curated by Mister Modular of KTUH FM Honolulu. His real name is Leon Naldo, and we're also fortunate to have him on staff here at HPR as a board operator. Leon has a degree in Information & Computer Science and he's been an on-air DJ at KTUH for 7 years. His show "My Little Corner of the World" airs every Friday from 9 AM to noon.

This past Saturday, the last day of Hawaiian Language Month, I was asked to DJ an event put on by Mana Studios + Purple Maiʻa called "ʻŌlelo Jam." Mana Studios created a program called "ʻŌlelo Flix" where the public can translate the subtitles of Netflix movies into Hawaiian via a Chrome extension. They also taught keiki how to code in Hawaiian as part of their "Code Haumana" program.

Tonight's episode of Bridging The Gap is split down the middle. The first half is the extended version of my Hawaiian music segment that aired on Here & Now's DJ Sessions last Friday. You'll get to here my extended version of what I would've wanted to showcase if time wasn't an issue, along with my last selection that got cut from the air for time. 

Tonight's episode is all about Motown - the classics as well as some not-so-well-known tracks from the label and its subsidiaries.

David LaChapelle for Rolling Stone magazine

Like the Queen, RuPaul says in every episode of Drag Race: "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell you gon' love somebody else? Can I get an 'Amen?'"

E nā makamaka hoʻolohe mai ka lā hiki i Kumukahi a i ka moku kāʻili lā ʻo Niʻihau, aloha nui nō kākou!

ʻO ka mahina ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi kēia - hulō! hulō! hulō! - no laila, he papahana ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi kā kākou i kēia pō. E lohe ʻia ana nō nā leo o nā mānaleo ma kēia papahana ma o nā lola o Ka Leo Hawaiʻi i mālama ʻia e ke Kula Nui o Mānoa, a i hoʻolaha ʻia ma ka paena punaewele ʻo Kani ʻĀina.

Starting here, and flowing with it til we get there. That's how tonight's show is gonna go.

I took a stroll down memory lane the other day and asked myself, "What was I listening to back in 2012?" The answer was, "Lots of Flume." I can't quite tell whether or not I'm embarrassed by that fact (it was 2012 and I just started working at KTUH) or proud that it was my first dive into non-top 40 music, but either way, it's the catalyst for tonight's indie-electro themed show.

Subbing in for DJ mrnick tonight with dub sounds for this Friday evening.

 

Due to recent weather, tonight's show was curated around the feeling of snuggling up under the covers while listening to the rain outside. It's what I call "burrito weather" in which you basically roll yourself up into your blanket like a human burrito.

Lots of acoustic folk, indie, and soul - stuff that makes you want to snuggle a little closer and burrito a little tighter.

Hauʻoli makahiki hou iā kākou! Mahalo to my best friend, Jon Alan, for bringing us into the new year last week.

New year, new music - some brand new, and some just new to my library. Kicking off 2020 manifesting a year filled with good music.

Quintessential Christmas music on this peaceful Christmas Eve including some classics, and some new takes on the classics. Mele Kalikimaka iā kākou i nēia lā hauʻoli.

DJ Mermaid here, subbing in for Harrison tonight! Sorry, tonight's show is not about the Baby Yoda, but he is cute isn't he?

As 2019 wraps up, I'd like to reflect on all that's happened in the past 12 months. It has been a year of many things: a bucket list trip, some successes, lots of setbacks, a few failures, lots of lessons learned (the hard way), and of course, my first official year as a host of Bridging The Gap!

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