Tuesday | August 30, 2016
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Letters | 8-18-13


Remembering George Duke

Having known this award-winning song writer, producer, arranger and keyboardist of all trades, George Duke’s humbleness was the number one trait that stood out the most in him. Wheter he performed jazz or rhythm and blues music, Duke’s good heart always is reflected in his music. Duke passed away Aug. 5 at the age of 67.

When his composition “Sweet Baby” hit No. 1, Duke’s humbleness never wavered. I remember Duke telling me on a radio interview we conducted that he was humbled by the 1982 success of his hit song “Shine On,” which became a huge success in Japan. He told me, “It was like being Michael Jackson when I was surrounded by fans in stores in Japan.” Nevertheless, Duke remained humble in nature, despite such huge success.

Just before Duke passed away from cancer, he released a great album in “Dream Weaver.” Instead of being a sad album, it is a typical great and positive CD. Duke lost his wife to cancer in 2012 and despite such a tragic loss, his solid heart and religous background enabled him to produce the album.

In the minds of many, the genius of Duke’s music will last forever.

It is just sad that the Duke didn’t perform in Hawaii as a headliner. However, he did perform in Hawaii as the keyboardist for Frank Zappa’s band approximately 30 years ago.

Dean Nagasako



What will it take to impeach Obama?

I recently went on a vacation back to the Midwest to visit family and friends, and as luck would have it our illustrious president came out to visit a small town about 50 miles east of my location. Supposedly his speech was going to be about how he was responsible for bolstering the economy and saving the nation.

Well, it took all of about four minutes before he started blaming the Republicans for everything by saying they were concocting all of these false and unfounded scandals, which at this point I really did want to throw up. This man is going to stand in front of the nation, with a clear conscious, call Benghazi, where he and his cabinet are responsible for all of the embassy deaths, and then deny they were aware of it, and to top it off, his chief of staff asking what difference does it make now? Like it wasn’t their fault, really? I don’t know what it matters, let’s ask the families left behind.

Now, moving on to the first illegally sanctioned Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms gun-running operation known as gun walking/operation wide receiver and other probes that started in 2006 and ended in 2008, but then carried on as the “Fast and Furious” scandal where 2,000 weapons were sold to the Mexican drug cartels, which were then used to kill American law enforcement officers fighting the drug war, not to mention the 150 Mexicans that have been killed with these guns, as well. Now, the good part of the supposed 2,000 guns sold, they have only recovered 710.

So I have to ask whether you are Democrat or Republican, how long are you going to stand aside and let him continue to get away with murder?

Ben Schaumberg



Many restaurants once sold reef fish, turtle

Reading West Hawaii Today’s article a week or so ago about restaurants in the past offering turtle meat and then this past week the Star-Advertiser ran an article on restaurant menus offering of reef fish on their menus back in the “old days” got me in the mood to speak some trivia.

Years ago, restaurants like Blue Ocean Cafe and Kewalo Inn, both located on Oahu, and many other “mama pop” places did offer reef fish. That was when Johnny Honol, Joe Gillman, Jack Ackerman, myself and others would sell fish to the “mama pops” before a law was made forbidding the sale of speared fish. Back then, me and my gang in Kona would, a couple of times during the summer when in need of money, send to Honolulu a beer box or two of speared fish for Monsoratt store in Kapahulu. Mostly they wanted uhu, papio (papiopio), kole and manini.

As to restaurants offering reef fish and turtle, during the time that I was involved with Jerry Mac Donald who had Buzz’s Lahaina and Maalaea along with Pineapple Hill, he served reef fish that he would buy from Ah Fook’s in Kahului, Maui. Of course Jerry, Jack Ackerman and myself would on occasion very early in the morning when the Pailolo Channel was glassed over, boat over to Molokai to spear like 100 pounds for the restaurants. In those days we also served turtle at those restaurants as we also did at Huggo’s, 40-plus years ago. There was this family (that shall remain anonymous) on Molokai who would go and gather the turtle and hold them by surrounding them with nets and when we and others needed an order we would just call and they would send the meat over by Hawaiian or the former Aloha airlines. That was until the selling of turtle was outlawed. Strange thing about it was that we were also forbidden to import farm-raised turtle meat from the Bahamas when that law went into effect.

Back in those fun days we had a big problem selling mahimahi. All the visitors figured we were selling that awful frozen Taiwan stuff. Those were the days before flash-freezing. The big seller then was ono. We even had trouble selling ahi, mainly cause of its dark meat and it can have what I call a “blood” taste. Of course that was the days before we taught them that ahi actually was similar to a broiled steak when handled properly.

Auwe over the years we taught the white man to eat ahi, poke, spam, corned beef and now look da price. Before, all that was “good for nothing” kau kau but it was cheap. Today, look da price. I no can even afford one can salmon.

Hugo Von Platen Luder