Castaways Announce Hawaii Tour 2013

April 1, 2013  | For Immediate Release | Seattle, WA


Hibiscus Uke

Seattle’s loudest ukulele band, The Castaways, have booked the first date of their summer 2013 Hawaii tour at the People’s Theater in Honoka’a. Additional venues are pending, but the band’s label, UkeReign records, confirms that their agent is working with Hilo’s Aloha Theater, The Blue Dragon, and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s Art After Dark program.

To underwrite the tour, The Castaways are in talks with super-yacht charter company Ukulele Breezes to provide accommodation for the band on one of their fleet of luxury motor vessels moored in the Hilo marina. Additional sponsors in play include Tropical Kool-Aid (and the beverage division of Kraft Foods) as a refreshments sponsor and, Converse shoes, who are exploring a limited run of Castaways logo fabric so fans can have the iconic rock star favored sneaker as a souvenir. Hilo Hattie’s responded positively to the idea of adding the band’s Kona side venues to their daily shuttle routes.

The Castaways, a ukulele driven rock band, have had remarkable success during their first year. Distributors are finding it hard to keep their EP, Sixer, in stock, and their video, a cover of Freeze Frame by J. Geils Band, continues to surprise and delight viewers. The band’s fan base is growing and they’ll be a main stage act at Seattle’s Folklife Festival this Spring.

“We’re excited to bring our ukes back to their homeland,” said one band member. “We wouldn’t be where we are without Hawaii’s gift to us — the ukulele — and we’re thrilled to get to share what we do with the wonderful people of Hawaii.”

The band of five — Jim Abernethy, Ed Viars, Pam Mandel, Mark Bader, and Pete Harris, has played a series standing room only shows in their home town of Seattle. Critics have said their sound is “pure, unadulterated joy” and “totally unexpected.” Their interpretation of classic rock for ukulele, using three ukes, a U-bass, and the cajon, has left audiences all over Puget Sound delighted and cheering for more.

Band members are deeply respectful of Hawaiian music and the ukulele. “The music isn’t our style,” said another band member, “but we love our ukuleles with our whole hearts. We want to acknowledge that, so as part of our show and we’re working with a local Hawaiian language expert to learn the Hawaiian version of Nothing Compares 2U (a Prince song covered by The Coconutz).”

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