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so time machine oops I say we'll never materialize it might be the most important part not that you guys don't know this but this is why we did the video to help. The public understand so that was 100 percent of spontaneous piece of art I had no. Lyrics or music that just came when I walked in there and of. Course in January 13 2018 there was that false missile alert in Hawaii and um a lot of the focus. Was who's to blame in Hawaii the whole narrative in the media and on social media and everything a lot of my friends and of course we're angry with good cause it was traumatic and people with children it was it was like we. Really thought we were going to die and so a lot of the narrative went around the governor and civil defense and who should we blame and how do we prevent. This event from happening but I started to look at a bigger picture and say well why is this even. Possible that this could happen and so that led me to going here and I don't have to explain. Why but I just want to preface my involvement in in in the nuclear issue and in. Relations between Russia and America is driven by two things one my neighbors when I lived on kawaii for six months two years ago happened to be friends Bruce Allen and Cynthia Lazaro and so they are the ones who invited me into this realm and kind of gave me the buffer education so that. I could understand the urgency. Of bringing this as an artist into the conversation and secondly my passion is is using culture in plain culture to build bridges between people and also translating. Culture for people I'm born or raised in Hawaii I'm not Hawaiian ancestry I'm many things but my upbringing is deep in the Hawaiian realm of knowledge I was raised by the elders we call them the kupuna and I learned from the Masters of not only Hawaiian music but also of cultural practitioners and I when I whatever. I do talks like this I don't have a like a plan lecture so things just come to me and when I was sitting there we're watching this the first thing I want to share with you folks was this idea that is Hawaiian and it's such a profound method for human relations it's. Called ho'oponopono so the word portal is a word that in the in the kind of the Christian realm that superimposed itself after ancient white culture was established they define it as righteousness but if you go back the word ponal really refers to a. Balanced relationship and portal is something that is the way we approach dealing with conflict so a little bit about Hawaiian history is so interesting is when you look at Hawaiian history you may have heard of Kamehameha who conquered all of the islands and then there was his chief system and they were like basically. A monarchy and it became a constitutional monarchy the Meno is overthrown in the late 1800s but prior to that prior to this chief system there's actually a system of governance called the AHA councils and. The all cultures were so. Interesting because anthropologists can't seem to find any evidence of weapon making for 16 generations during the law council period and all councils were basically council of elders that were assigned to an Oahu why is the land division. That goes from the top of the mountain to about half a mile out at sea so each agua basically has all the resource it means to be sub sufficient and these councils of elders or kupuna these councils would deal with any issues that came up and also legal issues and. The way that they did it. Was through a process called whole poem. Poem and whole poem organize something actually really simple is that it's the idea or the belief that by perceiving someone or something you can actually change their behavior um and there are a lot. Of stories about this in Hawaiian history but I think um with what we're dealing with in terms of US and Russian Federation. Relations um you know for someone like me who has no education in this realm who's just a layperson an artist i I asked myself what what can I do and you know what my fans my listeners with what can we do it seems like something that's out of our realm the authorities and. The highly educated people that's their thing and policy what can we have to do with that. But I really still people said what you can do is when you're hanging out with your family and friends or you're on Facebook or wherever you are interacting socially don't have a mouthpiece for the. Toxic view of others and I remind people that people are not their governments people are not the direct policymakers and I think it's so important now as much as it may have been 25 30 years ago to create a. Whole funnel funnel process in our own way of. Constantly dignified and humanizing people that might be from another place we don't understand it might speak a different language and I dress differently and that's why I went to Russia because I wanted to be able to say. I went there I didn't read about this on Facebook I mean this sounds stupid but it's true like what did I know about Russia Hunt for Red. October like as a kid that's it and anyone can look at me go what. An idiot but if you really want to be honest about America what do we know you know the. Average person doesn't know jack all they know is what they see on the news the first thing I learned when I went to Russia blew my mind was about. The color red like you know I was red what does it mean communism like wise people like. Red and we start to ask that questions like oh no it does nothing to do politics the root of the word has to do similar to the root of the word beauty and there's this whole different kind of orientation in it it's one example of how. We can make these assumptions and superimpose them onto an entire people and define them so came up with a saying reduce nuclear weapons not each other and that's kind of been my messaging in this. As I go out and play my shows and share this is I'm nobody I'm just a person. With no specific education in this realm but I care because these. Policies that are being enacted. Could affect all of us and what we had to go through in Hawaii was super super traumatic so that's what got me involved and when we went to Russia in the fall I went there with just a giving heart and I actually a cultural ambassador and did all three performances and all. Four schools and outrage and of course the feds diplomatic academy and all. Of these things and when you go to another culture and you in a place and you just offer them here I just want to not only give. Up myself but learn about you you completely have a different orientation and. So I think these exchanges are really important and um one of the things I learned on my trip was i sat down with um Vladimir Posner who came to lunch and we had this amazing talk and and and we were talking about when you. Get up in the morning and you go on the elevator in here and you don't like oh I'm an American I'm happy to be there I really good morning you know and the person in the elevator doesn't necessarily say like they might not even respond and I could easily get to myself what a nice I. Guess people aren't very nice all right you could go to Hawaii and you might come out of your hotel and be like Aloha somebody went. You feeling like it's this idea. That our little myopic view of a culture that our small brain is trying to like encapsulate it make sense of we can extrapolate an entire view of a people from a singular interaction and we. Tend to do this so he was saying you know that the average person in America doesn't have any understanding which I don't of what. People in Russia been through their orientation to everything and so all of. These things that I'm talking about kind of lay the the soil the groundwork for the policy which is like a cloud that hangs over the earth and this is where I feel the arts and culture can play a role is to create dialogues and bring about curiosity in. This room so that's kind of what inspired me to go there and and I will tell you as I announced to. Like my listeners hey everybody I'm so excited I'm going to Russia I cannot tell you how many of highly educated people world travelers came up. To me to all McConnell please don't go I need you my treasure it's dangerous there are you sure you want to go like them and this is very very well traveled educated people to get a syllabus this is this is the mentality that's out there you know and I'm looking it I mean people are writing a. Message is like can you do an Internet concert are you sure you want to put yourself in danger like that so this is that this is the word on the street this is how it is and we can't think that we're gonna affect any policy and evacuee me where a population is totally. Thinking there's 150 million evil people over there and 300 new and. Evil people over here and so you know like the work that Cynthia's done in the 80s and what we want to do and this is again totally naive but I proposed this idea at the diplomatic I mean was because again here I'm a person trying to figure out these acronyms INF treaty I even know what. It meant I enough I was like what is the acronym so I just got on the mic and I said well I don't we have a BFF treaty we follow the Nations and get children to sign it and of course everyone left and it seems to go Island so naive that's so cute anyway back to work but. That's the thing is in my parents time it became that level of initiative it became that level of conversation now what's what are all the Liberals Feigenbaum climate change what could change the climate faster than nuclear blasts and. Nuclear war nothing so why isn't that part of the conversation that's a failure on everyone's part all of us who are concerned with this and so I am you know trying to find ways and to educate me so if. A sponsor say how can we bring this into the conversation how via presidential candidates talking about this how can we get people just becoming aware because the average knee-jerk reaction is oh you're fear-mongering. Oh stop your fear-mongering oh we would never blow each other up it's all about money it's just posturing. I'm like well you know something could get hacked it might be. Accidental you know. I mean there's a lot of waves of things to go so trying to convey that and. Create a narrative that. Engages not just public but children and one of the films I watched recently you may have seen was that mr. Rogers film and I just I think the guy was amazing because like when Kennedy was assassinated he was there in front of millions of children addressing this issue when parents couldn't even. Talk to their own kids and that's the power of what media and an. Art can do is kind of direct the mass attention over to this and if we can get a groundswell of not. Just activists and artists but the average person to say hey well why are we going back to another Cold War why are we building up more Arsenal's why are we getting rid of these treaties who who use small nukes oh you guys psychotic what are you what wait who what I mean you've the average person you tell them that's. Really cool what is it what movie are you talking. About we dealt with that in the 80s and and I certainly don't want to have to deal with this I mean I told my parents I said you guys destroyed. The environment you destroy the economy and you're gonna saddle me with dealing the nuclear issue thanks mom and dad you know so I mean but that's the. Reality for young people just like you just like Mike why do we have to deal with this is you know how you guys figured that out so I think there's a and and again. I was we were talking about this in your office with music itself as you know none of you buy music anymore. We streamed it and so like how does people like us make a living well it's tricky but one of the things I tell artists is when you create a narrative around your songs and you create a narrative around your story now you're engaging someone for more than that three minutes. So you work so hard you spend all your money on this one song. Is three minutes and then they forget about it around something else when you build a narrative all of a sudden you build a relationship of two-way street and I'd like to find ways to. Encourage a narrative with the public where they start to feel empowered to how. To say in the policy to. Have a say that their opinion matters because it does matter and the difference between now and the Cold War is we have social media means we have a much greater tool it could work against us if we're not careful but we have a much greater tool to engage and. Use that public mass tidal wave to shape policy from the from the ground up and so that's what that's where music can come in because music. Can take something really um really complex and I can it can kind of simplify it just to create a doorway so this is a song that I wrote recently as. Part of a friend's musical and I haven't released it or recorded it because I just wrote it but I'm going to soon and it's called this side of the fence it's very Joni Mitchell. From this side of the fence the threaded scenes in it leave God of Sultan's I'm ready for war I saw me Congress had to choose to negotiate all use deadly force to restore the peace of the region for is in season just make up reason and deploy your hungry Sarge uniform are you really. Sure just what you're fighting from this side of the veil happiness is for sale buried somewhere in the. Tale of Star City and greed I read Vanity Fair it. Shows me how to. Do my hand and for a. Moment I'm free from all of the chains of a life so mundane there's so much I must obtain joy we. Go from store to store what we watch your search yeah you know going to Russia was such a profound life-changing experience for me because I mean I'm I'm from Hawaii it's like our orientation. Everything is so different already we're the you know there's a little tiny island in the Atlantic if someone wants to be a stickler but other than that we are the most geographically isolated landmass in the world. And and so I mean they asked. Local people like Oh what do you think of Russia of you very few have any direct experience and for me going there was the perfect experience of being exposed to an entirely different orientation to everything for example every person I met and I one of the most profound. Conversation I had was with the blind nail girl because I have to put on these nails to play guitar so I'm sitting there and with this this woman and her daughter was there and I had a friend translating and she starts asking me all these things like Lord you married and are you. This and that and like her the conversation was not about anything in the political room but I can tell you this if I never would have had that conversation in Oakland it's like did I agree with her. Perspective no but I felt like I had been missing and assuming so much about how the world ought to be from my perspective before I heard her say what was important to her and what she wanted and what she wanted for her daughter and what she wanted to see happen and so what it did was it really broke that. Kind of idea that I might know what's best for others more and more and I've traveled internationally so much as an ambassador so I should know this but it's easy to go back into that Rome and that's why the more opportunities we can create for this direct interaction I love what you guys do I mean. I think it's incredible and I was so moved I'm going back in October to play at the Moscow International Performing Arts Center and to travel more around and share and just keep that door open sharing culture another thing that happened was I met a balalaika player on the street and and. We have this amazing jam session and just he showed me his family history and where he came from and I come from a Hawaiian tradition which I'm going to share with you in a moment but seeing his orientation and talking about his dreams and everything again it's simplistic. But when we humanize each other just as doing this very program that you guys participate in it creates something that supersedes any superimposed authoritarian system that says you must be enemies it's that direct connection. Because we are people we need that and as you guys know you're here from different places it builds these amazing synapses in you that change you from the inside and that's what happened to me in Russia was very profound and that's why I want to go back and it must have been profound because it's golden and I don't. Mind that not all the time are you sure you know my friend sent me these amazing pictures from like Eastern. Russia actually the the State Department reached out to me and invited me on an Eastern Russia tour so that. Might be happening too but a little bit about the culture that I come from so I learned from the old time component of a style that is about 150 years old and just as Spain has flamenco and Brazil has bossa nova Hawaii has. Slack key guitar so I'm gonna play a traditional song that will show you a little bit about this culture you me cop are you my Oh and my blue and Hawaiian slack key guitar we slap the strings to the court in. That we play the bass the rhythm and close your eyes sounds like my boy Oh and on and then this song. From the Island of Hawaii with a big honor the writer David Putney the writer David ala play compares the residents of this beautiful place called blue to the rare feathers the black and yellow feathers of this very rare native yeah. You know the thing about language that is so important and you are saying I think for the Duel Masters it's a requirement was it with all of our students to date are required to have efficiency or a second language and it's something that we think is absolutely essential in terms. Of not only communicating that understanding other cultures yes and and you know of course we can say well. Translator apps are coming. Into their own and things are getting really or you don't even need to know but people think in language and and it's you know patriarchal white view to think that everyone should just adopt if the American Way of thinking I think it's really important that not only do all languages get perpetuated. Or you could call them dialects really but we also in the. Process of whether we're mediating or negotiating or just building relationships we try and like to learn a word here there where we. Try to engage and ask people about their culture when I was representing Hawaii in China the state of Hawaii many years ago I was I was sharing one of the one of the that like my great experiences in the world was meeting under a swollen by dark Switzerland is. A world renowned harpus and he turned me on to the guzheng which is a Chinese heart so I. Went to London and purchased Chinese heart I was a kid and I remembered that and I played often and so when I went to China I had this little secret thing in my back pocket and I did this show in an opera house. And right at the end I reveal I'm sharing my culture the whole time and then I. Said you know my grandmother's from China I just wanted to. Honor your heritage. And culture and I revealed this guzheng and I played something very simple by any standard and I remember one of the head diplomats came up to me crying and she was just so. Like Makana thank you for making an effort to learn something of ours I am just so moved and we look so forward to working more. Than I am Bob and I just. Find it giving them a sense of recognition and that of pride so he's natural human feeling the ice melted and it just made them so much more eager to like engage on whatever terms were being discussed and that wasn't that's are a political thing there was. More of commercial aspects in terms of business but it's building that bridge by recognition and becoming curious about other people's stories and I. Think honestly with you know you have corporate media here and you could say your state media there but we're often deprived I mean for those of us who are avid readers and we know how to use the internet to navigate perhaps we're exposed but the average person is not exposed to enough diversity in storytelling and so that's why I. Have the audacity to come before a group like you who have no expertise to offer you except just my experience as a cultural practitioner or somebody who loves this sound and this value set from this little place that is seemingly insignificant and I do feel that if we can kind of hack into the heart. And connect with people there some kind of magic happens because the people who are running the world right now I think are disconnected from that and I you know I posted an article today you may have heard that there's I guess it's the women piece something act. Of 2017 where there was a study came out that the more women are involved in negotiations the better the outcomes and I just love this you know it's like come on let's get the matriarch Ewing here so we. Need balance and and and we have a lot to learn from culture because of that so I can't play more if there's any questions you guys want to okay so we we have a lot. Of flexibility here I would love to hear one more song and then that's been then we can even open up for ya banana door and then I should tell you I think it at 1:30 will actually have refreshments um. So we why don't we have one more song and then we'll have some Q&A and some food wonderful okay well this is a very old Hawaiian song that now how many you guys have been to Hawaii okay so um there's a place on Hawaii which. How about use the name of all the islands but Hawaii is also the. Name of the biggest island which is also the newest island is going with the active volcanoes on it we call it the old name is moco chaotic moco is island kiawe was the chief the island of kod and um there's a place. Called Waipio Valley and you can look this up but you have to go because Waipio Valley has twin waterfalls coming down onto. A black sand beach this is so unbelievable and then when you go down. The value to go. On it like a TV because it's so steep you get in and you can either go to. The beach or you can go into we call melka ma is directional Luka is the uplands so that when you ask your. Direction and away you go oh excuse me sir um do I take the one to the sixty-three and then. The horns don't use numbers Bobo you go you. Will face F up and that's that I Diamond Head in the back and then you go on my high side you're gonna turn left over there and go in mango tree that's how people give directions and and so if you go Malcolm this giant waterfall. There it's like its intimidating like you just turn the corner you're like you know assaulted by a waterfall and rainbows and so this song takes place there and I'll translate a little bit as I go but it's about a love story that takes place there it's called heee latte which is the. Name of the waterfall Bhumika mayor he loved it far below him money Oh my near IEP whoa Oh my Eva Heba na na na hoona as an example of how Hawaiians think that line is may he forgive a hakama. Cool I am cherished too by my parents may I inaudible and I am like a lay around the neck of my grandparents Lele we come under they all love. It I am I hi iam iam nah come on come on cockeyed Kanaya heel of a at the end of many lighting song since the priest Akina II am I am a couple of them and that phrase is often. Translated as and so the story is told or tell the refrain but the grave I am smaller married cabana fuku be translated by McGee of Miami couple wanna ads and so is the echo of my stomach Akane can i lke loving all eyes rest. Upon the waterfall evil.

 


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