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By In Hawaii

The Untold Story of How Hip-Hop Went to Hawaii, and How Hawaii Went Hip-Hop

Richard Gasper didn’t exactly fit the look of a hip-hop pioneer.

Raised in Halawa, an area of Oahu most known for its proximity to Pearl Harbor and its max security correctional facility – the only one in the state – he rocked slippers, board shorts, half-cut tees and jobber hats with tails in the back. Gasper was more into surfing and heavy metal as a kid, but everything changed when his cousin came over and played Zapp’s funk hit “More Bounce to the Ounce.” His cousin started popping — dancing characterized by quick, explosive movements to make it look like joints were popping out of their sockets — and Gasper was hooked.

It was 1980, just seven years after hip-hop was born in a Bronx apartment party and less than a year after it rhymed its way into national consciousness with The Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight.” Before the internet allowed anyone and everyone to call themselves rappers, before MTV became the arbiter of music and culture for a generation, hip-hop traveled 5,000 miles from its New York City birthplace to the shores of Hawaiʻi…

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By In Hawaii, rap

Breakin’ Da Mold

It was 1980, just seven years after hip-hop was born in a Bronx apartment party and less than a year after it rhymed its way into national consciousness with The Sugarhill Gang’s “Rapper’s Delight.” Before the internet allowed anyone and everyone to call themselves rappers, before MTV became the arbiter of music and culture for an entire generation, hip-hop travelled 5,000 miles from its New York City birthplace to the shores of Hawaiʻi…

 

 

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By In Hawaii, Mixed Martial Arts

Make UFC Hawaii Happen

“A lot of my concentration has been recently dedicated to athletic delegations, a coupling of words I don’t typically think about or write about. Perhaps the more newsworthy delegation is between North and South Korean officials meeting and agreeing to Olympic participation and cooperation. Since I live in Korea, it’s something that obviously occupies my mind. Yet it’s another set of delegations that, while more esoteric and less reported, has me feverishly hitting refresh and eyeing ticket sales: the delegations from the Hawaii Tourism Authority and the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Officials from both camps met recently to discuss the possibility of making UFC Hawaii happen at some point this year. As of now, there’s not much to report. The delegations met and discussed terms, and by all accounts, the meeting went well. Talks will resume as Max Holloway’s title defense against Frankie Edgar at UFC 222 draws nearer.

I won’t beat around the bush here: UFC Hawaii needs to happen. Frankly, it’s ridiculous that it hasn’t happened already…”

 

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By In Hawaii, Korea

Lessons from the Hawaii Missile Threat

“Since I moved to Seoul four years ago, I’ve grown used to the hysterical concern that my family and friends back in Hawaiʻi have expressed about my new neighbor to the North. The hysteria has only intensified post-Trump, with every fiery sound byte and furious tweet manifesting into another frantic phone call asking if I’m sure I don’t want to move home yet.

It was a strange sort of role reversal when I woke up on an otherwise regular Sunday morning to discover that, while I was asleep, an intercontinental ballistic missile had been launched, was inbound to Hawaiʻi, and it wasn’t a drill. No texts or voice messages were on my phone, and the worst-case scenario billowed in my mind like a mushroom cloud. A quick Internet search informed me, however, that the warning was a mistake. Gratefulness and relief washed over me. Harrowing stories of parents calling their kids to say goodbye slowly turned into memes poking fun at the whole situation. Everything was fine. Everyone was fine.

A latent restlessness lingered around my apartment, though; one that soon transformed into anger…”

 

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