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Don Ho

Don Ho employed his talents as a middle-of-the-road pop singer and musical ambassador for Hawaii to launch a mainland career that included half a dozen chart albums, numerous television appearances, and engagements at top venues starting in the mid-'60s. He was born in Kakaako, a small neighborhood in Honolulu on the island of Oahu in Hawaii and grew up in the city of Kaneohe, also on Oahu. After a stint in the Air Force, he took over a cocktail lounge in Kaneohe named Honey's, after his mother. There, he started a band, eventually called the Aliis, with himself as singer and organist. In 1962, he moved to the Oahu resort district of Waikiki, where he played in a nightclub called Duke's. There he began to come to the attention of the mainland entertainment business. He was signed to Reprise Records, which released his debut album, Don Ho Show, in 1965. In 1966, he made his debut at the Coconut Grove in Los Angeles, an engagement followed by others at such high-profile locations as the Sands in Las Vegas, Harrah's at Lake Tahoe, the Palmer House in Chicago, and the Americana Hotel's Royal Box in New York. He also began turning up as a guest on network TV talk shows. Meanwhile, his records began to sell. His second album, a live collection called Don Ho -- Again!, reached the charts in March 1966, but it was the release of "Tiny Bubbles" that fall which really broke him in record stores. The single placed in the pop and the easy listening charts, stimulating sales of a Tiny Bubbles LP that made the Top 20 and stayed in the charts nearly a year.

Ho continued to cultivate television, appearing as himself on such sitcoms as Batman and I Dream of Jeannie. His next album, another live collection, East Coast/West Coast, reached the charts but was only a modest seller. Subsequent records didn't do as well, but another live LP, Suck 'em Up (the title referring to his on-stage exhortation to the audience to drink heartily), gave him his fourth chart album in the spring of 1969. That summer, he co-hosted the Kraft Music Hall TV variety series with Sandler & Young, which increased his exposure and helped put Don Ho -- Greatest Hits! and The Don Ho TV Show onto the charts.

Ho's record sales declined after the late '60s, but he continued to perform extensively and appeared on television, notably on episodes of The Brady Bunch, Charlie's Angels, and The Fall Guy. From October 1976 to March 1977, he hosted a half-hour daytime variety series, The Don Ho Show, broadcast over ABC-TV. By the '90s, he had launched his own label, Honey Records, to release his recordings and others by island favorites. He continued to make occasional TV appearances, and in 1996 had a small part in the film Joe's Apartment. He performed regularly at his own club in Hawaii. Hoku, the seventh of his ten children, launched a singing career in 2000 with her song "Another Dumb Blonde," which was used in the movie Snow Day and became a Top 40 hit, followed by the release of her debut album, Hoku. ~ William Ruhlmann, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

Comments

There is a Vietnamese singer with the same name. But he never sings Hawaiian style songs. And the Don Ho that you have right not is not Vietnamese. He is from Hawaii. Please do not put him in the Vietnames music station.
When I went on R&R to Wahiwa to visit family I also went to ( I believe)the Market Place on Don Ho gave about 10 bottles of Champagne away to us from the 25th Inf. I believe my wife & I went back to Hawaii, I believe it was about a 6 months to a year before he passed away and went to a show he had - he didn't sing much and was seated most of the time. I introduced Jony my wife to Don. We were certainly shocked when we heard he had passed on and shortly thereafter his daughter or sister, Ed
Uncle Don was a dear close friend and associate in the 60's and 70's. Our bands performed just yards apart in the legendary Market Place in Waikiki. My wife Robbie and I even caught up with Uncle don in Tokyo. His charisma was incredible and the man was totally open and loving to all he cared for and about. Uncle Don is and always will be The Legend in Hawaii.
odonnell8279
I lived on Oahu from 1975 to 1979 and saw him perfom often as well as the Allis and the Society of Seven and many other island favorites, all fantastic acts. I believe that Hawaii has more pure singing and entertainmen t tallent per capita than any other state in the Union. You can go into any club or small bar and find tallent like Ho performing live every day. It is totally amazing and the music is sooooo relaxing!!!.
Da kine vocalist!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
desertrose2u 2 0 0 2
I was lucky to be able to see him an his daughter perform in Laughlin, Nv with my kids. I also took my mom who adored him. All of us had a great time. They need to change "Middle of the road" to something better. He was a great performer.
christaltips
"Middle of the road" sounds so...average . The man had an amazing voice and deserved his place in pop history. I am sorry to have lost the chance to hear him perform in person.
tamtomnight
Mr. Ho was a gracious and generous family man. I took my parents to Hawaii multiple times, and each time he invited us backstage to his private parties. He treated us so kindly. Now, they are all in heaven, and I will always love Don Ho and his family, and the Hawaiian People, and the islands. thank you. Love, The Miller's
chuckalwyn
Frist time we saw Don Ho was at the theater in the aound across form Disneyland soon after the Tiny Bubbles song came out. Then saw him before he died at the San Diego Fair. Remember a couple of his sayings, Someone spilled a drink on my organ and to the young women, What's your mother's name, you look familar. Will miss him. Have him on Itunes and Iphone as I walk the beach here in San Diego.
rgspops
Meet him the first time in the Air Force and then again a week before he passed away. He was great and did a much for his home town. We will miss you brother!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! God Bless!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
Let us all know that Sweet Don passes away..mahalo nui aloha...Tomm o i o Thompson.

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