The news arrived yesterday afternoon that DJ Pratt, the founding guitarist of Kalapana, passed away suddenly. Long-time Kalapana member Gaylord Holomalia posted a photo on his Facebook page with the caption, "I Love You DJ".
We're not sure what to say, and even if we did, we wouldn't know how to say it. Although I didn't get a chance to meet DJ in person, I've known him as the quiet, driving force behind Kalapana, a behind-the-scenes kind of guy who makes things happen and gets things done.
In recent months, we've been revisiting Kalapana's catalog following our reissue of Mackey Feary's first solo record, and it's been a joy to rediscover the many songs that lie hiding in the corners of albums like Kalapana (when it comes to their debut album, "Everything Is Love" is regularly overlooked, on our opinion!) and in other parts of the world (Pratt released a handful of solo records in Japan, including the should've-been-a-Kalapana-classic LP, Branded).
In honor of David John Pratt, we asked our chief archivist and go-to selector for deep dives, Vinyl Don, to put together a mix celebrating DJ's music and contributions to Kalapana and the greater musical cannon of contemporary music from Hawaii.