Blooming Talent

Aidan James of Honolulu and Lily Meola of Maui are ones to watch.

A New generation of musicians is sprouting in Hawai’i, including Aidan James and Lily Meola. discover how they are building their fan base on- and off-line:


From talented youngster to YouTube sensation, Aidan James’ rendition of “Hey, Soul Sister” at the 2010 Ukulele Festival-hailed as Train frontman Pat Monahan’s “favorite cover”-struck a chord with online audiences, making him a Honolulu household name overnight. With over 18 million hits (and counting!) for this performance and a California Whisky A Go Go show under his belt, Aidan James, 12, is on the rise with a single, “One of the Ones,” available in original, island and club versions on iTunes.

Once discovering the catchy single “Hey, Soul Sister” employs a ‘ukulele, “something clicked,” fueling his drive to utilize the instrument in styles beyond Hawaiian music.

Praised for his speedy right hand, he now sings and strums the ‘ukulele with seasoned, rock-star flair that supersedes his preteen frame.

“I want to continue … write more songs, release an EP of original songs and tour around the world,” James exclaims.

Signature spiked hair and thick-rimmed specs on his side, this stylish musician is one to watch. Have a listen at


Angelic vocals and youthful beauty mastered, Lily Meola, 19, of Maui is a blossoming young vocalist. An album in the works, Meola released a heartwarming duet with Willie Nelson called “Will You Remember Mine” September 2013-available on Nelson’s To All the Girls… album on iTunes.

A “diverse” musician inspired by Norah Jones, Ella Fitzgerald and a medley of other musical styles, she launched her performance career “singing in the car” before landing a lead role (“Dulcinea”) in her school’s production of Man of La Mancha in the sixth grade.

“This past year I had the most incredible experience touring with Willie Nelson. I really loved being on the road and would love to continue down that path,” Meola states. “For me, there is nothing that compares to performing in front of a large audience that appreciates your music…” See her career bloom @lilymeloa or www.

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