We Go Jam was a series of events sponsored by the Hawaiʻi Council for the Humanities to complement the release of We Go Jam: Celebrating Our Music, Our Soundscape, Our Hawai‘i which was also published by HIHumanities, because “Nothing brings us together quite so whole-heartedly as does music, connecting us to a place and telling stories about ourselves and the world around us. We Go Jam is a pure humanities project and we are happy to join Windward Community College in celebrating the music of Kāne‘ohe and Windward O‘ahu,” said Bob Buss, Hawaiʻi Council for the Humanities executive director.
Music, in some form or another, is a part of every culture and often defines our human experience. In Hawai‘i, mele not only provide enjoyable moments of kanikapila, but often carry deeply historical reflections of significant events, people, and places of these islands. They provide us with insight to significant moments in Hawaiian history and connect us to one another, to our communities, and to our kūpuna.
Out Loud in the Library at Windward Community College presented We Go Jam Reading, Music and Book Signing on Thursday, February 21, 2013 from 6 to 8 p.m., celebrating the newly released book with contributing authors Puakea Nogelmeier, Jerry Santos, Calvin Hoe, Thelma Chang, Aiko Yamashiro, and editor Susan Yim.
Participants met on the breezeway outside the Windward CC’s Library Learning Commons entrance at 6 p.m. for music by the college’s TRiO students and from 6:30 to 8 p.m. for the reading and music in the library atrium, first floor.
This event was also sponsored by Windward Community College. Out Loud in the Library was coordinated by Windward CC English instructor and award-winning poet Janine Oshiro.
On Saturday, November 14, 2015, teaching artist James McCarthy presented a teachers’ workshop on music creation at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center. Participants unlocked their musical talents through the discovery of creating music with their own words. Through readings from We Go Jam: Celebrating Our Music, Our Soundscape, Our Hawai‘i, teachers reflected on key themes and explored the craft of composing songs and lyrics, as practiced in the tradition of Haku Mele, a selection in the book by Puakea Nogelmeier. They examined Hawai‘i place names and wrote short verses in which they expanded to simple rhythms and melodies. Each participant received a copy of We Go Jam and Musics of Hawai‘i, a recording resource and booklet.
On Thursday, December 10, 2015, over 150 people from the East Hawai‘i community attended the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Department of History presentation Ho‘oulu Mele Hawai‘i, a kanikapila where students and community members gathered to enjoy expressions of history and storytelling through mele. Hosting the event were emcees Kuʻehu LeeHong-Mauga, Iokepa Kaolulo, Kaipo Wahinepio, and Jenna Pontes-Borje. Featured musicians were Ka Leo Wai Hawaiian Ensemble, Darlene Ahuna, Aunty Diana Aki, and Karla Kapō‘aiola Ahn and friends.