I first met Imua a few years back when we had Hawaii Music Supply in Wahiawa. Before I actually met him, though, I heard him across the store, in the keyboard section, Chick Corea/ Stevie Wonderish type stuff ,and killin’ it! soulful and harmonically interesting. I thought, wow, this is one of the best keyboard players I’ve heard. Turns out, he’s pretty much mind-blowing good on a lot of instruments. After Imua left that day Aaron said to me, ” Ya know, … I think he’s the best ukulele player out there….and that’s probably his weakest instrument!”.
Imua was gigging at 7 years old and on CD at the age of 11! He led The Opihi Pickers through his teenage years and has more recently been recording and producing for some of the island’s top Reggae bands, heading a worship team , and working on a new music project with his wife Tiffa, a brilliant vocalist and musician as well. In my opinion, they’re making the coolest stuff in Hawaii right now. They have a new band and album coming up, but start by checking out their 2010 release- One Right Turn. .go buy it at iTunes. Eight bucks for the album and it’s full of good songs and eclectic in range.
In the three video lessons at our website, Imua shows fun and exciting techniques. They will feel unnatural at first. If you can’t get them down like Imua, don’t worry, pretty much no one can. But you can take these ideas and work them into your playing. Muscle memory will slowly kick in! Perhaps the only difference in you and Imua Garza is thousands of hours of practice? Sweet! 😀 Like anything, make it your own and have fun.
By the way, how’s the tone from Imua’s Ko’olau!? He recorded the backing tracks just before I arrived, then plugged straight into the computer with the new LR Baggs 5.0 pickup in his T100 Koa tenor. Great player + great equipment =…..