Releasing this Tuesday, June 23rd. Teal Flamingeaux tee will be released online only while the heather gray Flamingeaux tee will be released in-store only.
The talented brothers at Hot Rain have been our ʻohana for many years, so when the idea for a collaborative project popped up, there was no question that we had to get together and let the Good Vibes flow. The result is this limited edition t-shirt featuring a stylized “flamingeaux” designed by April Gaxiola on the front along with our FITTED crown and Hot Rain’s logo on the back in white.
The term “flamingeaux” is one that Hot Rain coined about a year and a half ago, when describing the elation and excitement of the moment. It started as a playful spin-off of the popular saying “we on one” and grew into an expression they continue to embrace to this day. Whether they’re being passionate, focused, excited, or just acting a fool, you’ll continuously hear them shout “we’re so flamingeaux right now!” And if you’re still wondering how the two phrases connect, think about how a flamingo stands…ON ONE!
The FITTED + Hot Rain Flamingeaux tee will be released in two colors—teal and heather gray. The teal version will be an online exclusive, while the heather gray version will be an in-store exclusive.
Last Thursday, I got to check out the homies, Boog and Hot Rain perform at Brooklyn Bowl in Las Vegas. It felt like I was back home at a concert with all the “chee huu’s” being yelled throughout the venue, all the FITTED being rocked and of course, Boog and Hot Rain performing. Boog even brought out Wanya from Boyz II Men to sing a couple of notes with him on stage.
This past Saturday was Island Reggae Fest, thrown by Cukui, over at Great America in Santa Clara. CT and I drove down to support and spend the day with our Cukui family and this was my first time checking this event out. This is a crazy event! Hella people and families were out enjoying the day at the park, good island music, some (hella) people were putting it in the air, good vibes all around, it was dope, really felt like I was back in Honolulu, but with a certain “city” feel to it. It kind of felt like Birthday Bash over at the Waikiki Shell. Of course I was thinking how much FITTED product I would see and I definitely didn’t expect this but FITTED hats and shirts were EVERYWHERE, Island Camo, Wai’Ale’Ale prints, Aloha’s, Kamehameha’s, were all over the place. Definitely a good feeling seeing all the FITTED gear being rocked. Shout out to Cukui family, Jae, Orly, Justin, Danny, Hot Rain, Chris Reezy, Blaine, Boog, ThaKuya and most importantly, Happy Birthday, Nixon!
For nearly 12 years now, Hot Rain has been a prominent figure in Hawaiʻi’s thriving reggae scene, serving as in-house and back-up band for international reggae superstars Junior Reid and Tanya Stephens as well as local staples Fiji and J Boog. Over the past couple of years, they’ve managed to climb from behind the shadows of their predecessors and walk into the spotlight and shine on their own. With the recent release of their debut LP, cleverly titled Self Titled, the inner-fire of these new, rising stars has ignited and begun to burn feverishly. 15 tracks deep, Self Titled features a hardy mixture of roots, lover’s rock and songs that will have you “move your dancin’ feet”. Three of the 15 tracks have hit #1 on local radio, including Cuz I’m, Love and most recently, Heavyweight Love, and if there was any indication of where Hot Rain is headed, these three songs charting highly is definitely a prophecy of what’s to come. Make sure to cop the album (now available at FITTED as well as Amazon, iTunes and CD Universe). #SUPPORTLOCAL MUSIC
FITTED: Two part question: What is the creative process when coming up with a concept for a song? And have you guys ever came up with a song idea that manifested into reality from a simple joke? If so, what song was this? (Sorry, I lied, that was three questions)
Hot Rain: It varies. At times, the lyrics are written first, then music is built around the lyrics. Other times, the music is created first, then the lyrics are written to fit the music. The track “Crazy Woman” was created from actual events that Cako experienced with some girl he hooked up with. He shared the story with the band and we all laughed about how crazy this chick was. Hence the name “Crazy Woman.” [Laughs]
FTD: You guys have nearly traveled the entire World. What are some of the most interesting stories you have experienced while on tour? In contrast with that question, what are the most horrible situations you guys have been in?
HR: There’s too many stories to share, but I guess we can mention a few. Let’s see…In Alaska, Cako disappeared with an Eskimo girl and ended up stranded in some uncharted territory, in the snow (that’s a crazy story) [laughs]. In Guam, we traded some beverages to a local in exchange for Big L to ride his water buffalo. In Japan, we hit up Club AgeHa and watched the sunrise on the rooftop where the DJ was spinning dancehall reggae music.
As far as horrible situations go, our last tour broke the mold by far. We recently did a tour in Australia. The tour flopped and we were stranded without flights home. We ended up doing a few last minute shows to pay for our way back home. It was rough but now we know, and knowing is half the battle.
HR: There will definitely be more video segments, not just cooking though. We try not to do too much with Les because he has a tendency to get naked [Laughs out loud]. Stay posted with our YouTube channel.
FTD: There has been a missing gap in music that celebrates the love of plus sized women. You guys have a new song on the album that has been receiving steady radio burn, so you’ve definitely bridged that gap. How did the concept of Heavyweight Love come about?
We’ve always wanted to write a song that was different from the norm. Big L mentioned that nobody writes love songs about “big girls.” When you hear love songs that talk about women, the descriptions are usually superficial. So we decided to create a song that was real and showed love to all the big, beautiful ladies…randomly, Chris Reezy took up the task and came up with “Heavyweight Love”!!!
FTD: As a group of friends and musicians, it’s quite obvious you have all been through some trying times as well as some honored times. Where do you guys see yourselves as a group in say, five years?
HR: Like Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I have a dream…” Well, we have dreams too. Next question (nah nah nah). But for real, next question (nah nah nah). On the real, in the next 5 years we hope that when you think of reggae music in Hawaii, you think of Hot Rain. We hope to be touring the world sharing our music and to be continually doing what we love…and also to be sponsored by FITTED HAWAII, [laughs] #realtalk (sorry, we don’t know why we’re trending that).
FTD: The number one viral commercial that’s currently making the rounds around the islands is Poncho’s Solar Services. Do you guys planning on digging into your Filipino roots and doing a cover of this beautiful song?
HR: Yes, we’re planning to collaborate with the singer and do a remix. But we’re also looking into hosting our own “grindtime style” Filipino Accent Battles! So if you think you got what it takes, “Come oberrr hurrr and get some!!!”
This Saturday, we’re paying tribute to a true legend and ex-mayor of Hawai’i, Frank Francis Fasi who physically left us a year and a month ago. Fasi was singly responsible for establishing TheBus which has won numerous awards year after year as America’s best public transit system. Besides celebrating Fasi’s great legacy and life, March also signifies the actual birth of TheBus, where it was previously known as Mass Transit Lines before March 1, 1971. While Fasi may no longer be here with us, his excellent achievements will forever live on in TheBus, that signature shaka as well as the Neil S. Blaisdell Center. Rest In Paradise, FASI!
Side note, shout out to Chris “Reezy” Rod who’s featured in the photo shoot, along with Blaine, Carl, Leslie, Crystal and Jorell of Hot Rain. Also, big shout out to Big Island Mike for the artwork
Here’s a sneak peak of what to expect from Hot Rain’s upcoming album. SUPPORT LOCAL MUSIC.