This album is one of many albums that were a big part of my childhood growing up. When this was released, it was as if the entire album was a single, since each song received massive airplay like crazy. You could not turn to KKUA, KIKI, K59, or KCCN in the mid to late 70’s without hearing “You Make It Hard”, “The Hurt”, “Going Going Gone”, and especially “Night Bird” and “Naturally”, it was truly the Hawaiian version of Fleetwood Mac‘s Rumors. In Kalapana‘s case, it was a style of pop rock that wasn’t evil like Black Sabbath or too sexual like Led Zeppelin. Today, there’s a name for what they did: yacht rock. But it was good music with an equal amount of mid-tempo tracks to ballads, from songs about getting high to wanting the company of a woman. Impressive for a debut album by a band who had no track record before this, they were not a supergroup and yet were treated as such. The group would release many more albums after this, but actually gained a massive following in Japan where they would release albums exclusively for that market.
35 years later, this album still holds true for me because I hear my youth, my world, my life when I was still in the single digits, and they were incredibly good times that I continually look back to for inspiration. The moment I hear the flute solo in “Nightbird”, my world stops and I take a break from whatever I’m doing. I’m home, and that will forever be where my heart is.