Harry Koizumi at Pale Fire Brewing Co.
Sunday, July 23rd
Harry Koizumi, also known as “Uncle” Harry was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. He studied classical guitar at the University of Hawaii and sang in the UH Choir and with the Chamber Singers. Since 1985, Harry has shared his love of music and teaching guitar and ukulele at Kailua’s Coconut Grove Music Store.
In 1991 Harry became very interested in Hawaiian music and began studying with slack-key guitar master, Raymond Kane. In 1993, Harry was awarded an apprenticeshiop with Mr. Kane by the Hawaii State Foundation of Culture and the Arts to perpetuate the Hawaiian slack-key guitar. Harry then studied Hawaiian steel guitar with Jerry Byrd for three years.
Harrv’s music has been used on Kulaiwi, a Hawaiian language show. He appeared on the Department of Education’s guitar instructional television show “Eazy Tunes” and taught on the
SIX-part ukulele instructional show, “Eazy Strummin’.” In 1994, he released two albums – “Still Green” and “Merry Christmas from Uncle Harry.” In November 1997, Harry released another album, “Celebrating Life Through Friends and Music” and in 2006 he released his fourth album “He Mana’ Ko’u ia ‘Oe.”
Harry was privileged with the opportunity to take slack-key music onto the international scene. Award-winning documentary
filmmaker Sigrid Faltin came to Hawaii in 2007 to film Harry
paving the slack-key version of “La Paloma” – the Cuban wedding song. In April of 2008 Harry traveled to Germany to play at the movie’s opening.
In 2016 Harry expanded his reach as a teacher by creating a YouTube channel called “Harry’s Guitar.” He posts performances as well as teaching videos that focus on the basics of guitar & ukulele and also how to play specific songs.
Harry has been performing since he was in high school, starting in rock & roll bands and playing in many clubs in Honolulu, Waikiki, and Kailua including The Wave, Pirate Bully Hays, Moose McGillycuddy’s, 23 Step, Lucky Pierre’s and Jazz Cellar, to name a few. His classical guitar and Hawaiian slack-key background allowed him to successfully transition to playing private parties and restaurants as a solo artist in the 1990s.