Steel Trappings

The Next Generation

The Next Generation of Steel Guitarists and Musicians

December 23, 2018 • Addison ChingEntertainment

Next Generation (or NextGen) musicians is a name given to a group of youth musicians (currently ages 9-14) who are studying Hawaiian music under the direction of Kumu Alan Akaka at his Ke Kula Mele School of Hawaiian music. While NextGen originally identified young musicians who were studying the Hawaiian steel guitar at Ke Kula Mele, the term has now been expanded to include a wider range of young musicians playing other instruments such as the bass, guitar, and 'ukulele.

NextGen Musicians
NexGen Musicians at a recent performance. PC-Alan Akaka

The NextGen concept was developed by Kumu Alan Akaka about eight years ago. The NextGen team comprises musicians who excel in their craft and are willing to share their talents publicly at music festivals and other Hawaiian music events. All NextGen musicians play multiple instruments, and some are vocalists as well. These students represent the Next Generation of Hawaiian music entertainment and are being trained in traditional Hawaiian music styles. A part of their instruction involves the history of the music they are playing; its composer, origin, and purpose.

A youth student of Ke Kula Mele becomes a member of the NextGen team by demonstrating his or her musical skill and performance readiness, no matter what age. A youth student will know they have reached NextGen status when they are called upon to participate in a public performance venue representing Ke Kula Mele. Upon graduation from high school, a NextGen musician becomes a NextGen alumnus.

NextGen Rehearsal
NexGen Musicians rehearse for an upcoming performance. PC-Alan Akaka

NextGen musicians perform regularly at HIMELE-produced Hawaiian steel guitar festivals statewide, at Ke Kula Mele concerts, and at special events. All are skilled musicians who have developed stage and performance presence and are excited about sharing their talents with others. Each performance featuring the NextGen may feature a different group of NextGen musicians as determined by their availability, readiness, and performance requirements. But no matter who participates, audiences are sure to delight in the skill and persona of these Next Generation musicians.

NextGen
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HIMELE Events
Kaua‘i Steel Guitar Festival
May 5, 2024 – 12:00 Noon - 4:00 PM HST
Kukui Grove Center, Lihue, Hawai‘i

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Windward Mall
June 8, 2024 – 11:00 AM - 4:00 PM HST
Windward Mall, Kāne‘ohe (O‘ahu), Hawai‘i

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Week - July 8-13, 2024
July 8-11, 2024 – 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM HST (Nightly Concerts)
Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī (O‘ahu), Hawai‘i

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival
July 12, 2024 – 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM HST
Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī (O‘ahu), Hawai‘i

Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Festival
July 13, 2024 – 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM HST
Royal Grove Stage, Royal Hawaiian Center, Waikīkī (O‘ahu), Hawai‘i

Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival Keiki Kine at Kahala Mall
August 17, 2024 – 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM HST
Kahala Mall, Honolulu, Hawai‘i

Maui Steel Guitar Festival
October 19, 2024 – 3:00 PM - 7:00 PM HST
The Shops at Wailea, Wailea, Hawai‘i

Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Experience at Mauna Lani
November 14-17, 2024 – Mauna Lani, Auberge Resorts Collection, Waimea, Hawai‘i Island

2024 Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Livestream Broadcasts

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All broadcasts originate from the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Facebook Page and YouTube Channel.


Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival
July 12, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM HST


Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Festival
July 13, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 11:00 AM - 2:30 PM and 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM HST
Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Experience at Mauna Lani
November 15, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 4:00 PM - 8:00 PM HST


Other Events
2024 AISGC Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival *
July 25-27, 2024 – Towne Square Community Center, Winchester, IN
Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association 2024 Festival *
September 26-28, 2024 – Emeryville, CA
* Registration Fee Required

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About HIMELE
HIMELE is a Hawai‘i non-profit corporation that supports music enrichment and education for people of all ages. Our purpose is to educate, promote, and perpetuate Hawaiian music, Hawaiian culture and Hawaiian musical instruments.