Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival at Ka Makana Ali'i
Kapono Lopes

Kapono Lopes

Kapono Lopes is from the island of Kaua'i and graduated from the Kamehameha Schools in 2015. He picked up Hawaiian music by playing alongside amazingly talented musicians, and by listening and watching all of his favorite artists and family musicians.

"I first started learning upright bass in elementary school when I joined the orchestra class." In middle school, Lopes started listening more to pre 1960s Hawaiian music and taught himself to play the 'ukulele.

After graduating high school, Lopes worked as a musician at the Polynesian Cultural Center, and was trained by talented artists to play guitar and bass guitar. In March of 2018 he acquired a Rickenbacker Bakelite steel guitar from Bobby Ingano and began his training on the instrument by Bobby and Jeff Au Hoy.

His inspirations and mentors include Bobby Ingano, the Asing family, Jeff Au Hoy, Casey Olsen, Alan Akaka, the Rogers family, his 'ohana, and many others. Kapono plays the 'ukulele, bass, guitar, and the steel guitar. He also has a gift of a smooth, high falsetto voice and often sounds like the legendary George Kainapau.

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