Lani Park is an award-winning poet, singer, hula dancer, surfer, and certified yoga teacher. The New York Times said, “She has the voice of an angel and the soul of a rock star.” Now rooted & settled on the Big Island of Hawai’i, she is “livin’ da dream.”
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Steve Roby: Where do you find your song inspirations and how do you start composing?
Lani Park: Most of my inspirations are either from nature, my children, love, you know, the entanglements or relationships that I’ve had experience with along the way, but pretty much all the songs, in some way or another, are love songs. Songs of gratitude for what we have in this life. So, I think that’s pretty much how they come about. And sometimes they come with like a little melody first, and sometimes just a word is common and straight-up, I’ll just write down the whole poem, and then find the chords to it later. So, it’s always a different process or journey, and that’s what I like about it, that’s what keeps it magical and fun!
Roby: Besides being a singer-songwriter, you were also a poet laureate, too, is that right?
Park: I was blessed enough to be the poet laureate of Queens from 2004 to 2007, and I believe one of the first women that they chose. That was quite a nice time in my life.
Roby: And you’ve got a book that you’re almost finished with that’s going to be published by Random House.
Park: I’m really excited about that. It seems like I’m very prolific, but these things have really taken a lot of time. The book is called Angel and Hannah, and it’s a love story written in verse. So, it’s a novel written in sonnet form.