No Mauna a Wākea is a collaboration of friends, Big Island musician Pat Eskildsen, his wife Scarlet Eskildsen, fellow musician Jonah Kahanuola Solatorio, and Holeka Inaba. They came together and produced a new single titled “He Mamo Au.” The heartfelt song is intended to honor, support and create awareness for Mauna Kea, and they are dedicating it to the kūpuna and kiaʻi who stand to protect her.
The Eskildsens are a talented and musical married couple. Pat plays lead guitar and bass in the Hawaiian swing band Kahulanui, and Scarlet is the band’s tour manager and coordinator as well as a well known local artist. The genesis of the song began as an instrumental in their Kalaoa studio– Pat playing acoustic guitar, and Scarlet playing strings on the keyboard. Jonah Solatorio a well-known musician from the Hawaiian trio Keauhou is a huge fan of Kahulanui and met them both at the Blue Note in Honolulu where Kahulanui was doing a show. They became instant friends and decided to collaborate together on this project.
While Kahulanui was on tour in Boston, Scarlet received a call from Solatorio who proceeded to sing his lyrics to her. “I just started crying when I heard it because it was about the mauna, and it was absolutely beautiful,” recalled Eskildsen. “It represented something so much bigger than us.”
When they returned to their Big Island studio, Solatorio flew over from Oahu and recorded his vocal track. Feeling something was missing, Jonah suggested adding Holeka Inaba for a chanting section which proved to be the missing element that completed the song. Violin by Elizabeth Robinson was added to the mix at Mana Studios, and Big Island Producer Michael Suprenant took care of mastering the single.
“There is so much desecration going on everywhere on this planet right now, it’s just ridiculous and heartbreaking at this point,” said Scarlet Eskildsen. “For us, it is important to do something here to support the ongoing efforts of the people (kūpuna and kiaʻi) who are protecting the water, the land, the mauna and vital to the Hawaiian culture and to us all. And it really goes much deeper than that”. A portion of the proceeds will be gifted to Puʻuhonua o Puʻuhuluhulu, an organization established with the support of the Royal Order of Kamehameha ʻEkahi for the purpose of protecting sacred MaunaKea.
Watch the short film Like a Mighty Wave, and make a donation to HULIʻs action network page.