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The Brothers Cazimero Reigned in Waikiki

Robert and Roland Cazimero
HPR
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Robert Cazimero, Peter Moon, and Roland Cazimero on the "Cracked Seed" vinyl cover.

If you think music in Waikiki, chances are you’ll eventually hear Robert Cazimero’s voice in your mind. He and his brother Roland reigned at two of Waikiki’s signature venues, the Monarch Room at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel and the Waikiki Shell.

Robert and Roland Cazimero graduated from Kamehameha Schools, their parents were entertainers, and they fell in with guitarist, composer Peter Moon. In 1969, their trio, The Sunday Manoa, released a cornerstone of the Hawaiian Renaissance — it was called "Guava Jam."

"You know, at first, especially when it comes to The Sunday Manoa, I don't know that we really had an idea of what it was we were doing as much as it was just a lot of fun," Robert Cazimero said. "Peter (Moon) had his style, and Roland had his style. And then together we kind of like melded it to make it our style at the time, which really had the opportunity to take off and be a part of the Renaissance in the latter part of the 70s."

Robert Cazimero and Noe Tanigawa
Noe Tanigawa
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HPR
Robert Cazimero and Noe Tanigawa for The Aloha Friday Conversation

He and his brother held the Monarch Room at The Royal Hawaiian Hotel for a dozen years.

On the other end of Waikiki at the Waikiki Shell, for 30 years they staged extravaganzas that remain to this day, the last word on celebrating May Day in Honolulu.

"I saw you guys had to pay, 'cuz we would do this for nothing. But I mean, somebody gotta pay for all those millions of flowers that were put on that stage," he said.

Have you been to Waikiki lately? It’s spectacular, especially enriched with memories.

Click the "Listen" button to hear Robert Cazimero go deeper into the music on The Aloha Friday Conversation on Aug. 13, 2021.

Noe Tanigawa covers art, culture and ideas for Hawaiʻi Public Radio.
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