An exciting opportunity: Ernie Menehune will be performing on Sunday, August 13 at the Kon Tiki Lounge in Tucson, from 5-7 p.m.
Ernie Menehune is the “Suntanned Hawaiian Irishman,” he was born and raised in Hawaii until he moved to the Mainland at the age of 25, in 1952. He initially settled in Los Angeles, but soon moved to the warmer climate of Arizona, where he eventually began singing there in nightclubs, and eventually developed his own Polynesian revue. He performed in a circuit that included Las Vegas, the Latitude 20 in Torrance, and multiple clubs in Arizona, and he was on the same bill as acts like Esquivel, Frank Sinatra, Harry Belafonte, Buddy Hackett (now THAT’s a show!), and Tom Jones. He and his troupe, which included his wife Beverly and her twin sister, performed thorughout the ’60s and ’70s, and stopped touring in the mid-’80s as their child entered kindergarten.
In recent years, Ernie Menehune had been performing at Ye Old Lantern in Tucson, until it closed a few months ago. Ernie has hosted the occasional luau at his home ranch, Menehune Village, just outside of Tucson. Now comes word that he will be performing at the Kon Tiki Lounge in Tucson, which will hopefully become a monthly engagement. The Kon Tiki Lounge is one of the best-preserved examples of midcentury Polynesian Pop, and is worth going out of your way to check out; a performance by Ernie Menehune (who by all accounts is simply a marvelous and warm fellow) makes it something truly not to be missed.
Seating will be limited, call (520) 323-7193 to make reservations.
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- Kon Tiki Lounge, Tucson [Critiki]
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- Aloha Again, Naturally [Phoenix New Times]