HAOPINAKA brings the spirit of aloha to the San Francisco Bay Area with Hawaiian guitars, ukuleles, and sweet vocal harmonies. Our beautiful and talented hula dancers are also available to make your special occasion memorable and unique.
HAOPINAKA was formed in 1998 when three friends from different backgrounds came together to share their love of Hawaiian music. The name “HAOPINAKA” is a combination of the words HAO-le (white guy), PI-noy (Filipino guy), and ka-NAKA (Hawaiian guy). And it is this unique friendship of cultures and styles that creates the sweet and lively sound of HAOPINAKA.
Peter Garellick, our haole, plays Hawaiian steel guitar, ukulele and bass. He also performs with the country band Crying Time, and the Javanese Gamelan Ensemble Sari Raras. Sil Castillo, our pinoy, plays guitar and ukulele. He plays with Tennyson Lum and many other well known Hawaiian artists. Rod Valdez, our kanaka, plays bass, guitar, and ukulele. Hailing from Waianae, Oahu, Rod has been playing all his life with musicians in Hawaii and here on the mainland. And since 2014, we have been joined on ukulele by Vanessa Alputila, the sweet "Songbird of the Islands," from Ambon Island, Indonesia.
HAOPINAKA's beautiful and talented hula dancers come from several award-winning hula groups. Our dancers have won Hawaiian Hula and Tahitian Dance competitions in California, Nevada, China, Germany, Indonesia, Poland, and The Netherlands.
HAOPINAKA is available to bring the sound, sights, and spirit of aloha to your next party, lu’au, wedding, or special event. We can perform as a solo ukulele player up to the full band, and with or without hula dancers.