‘Ukulele player, Bryan Tolentino has been known, for the past thirty-eight years, as an accompanist who performed and continues to perform, locally and abroad with some of Hawaiʻi’s most well known and accomplished Hawaiian music artists.
Bryan’s recorded on over fifty CD’s for other artists as well as compilations adding his unique “fairy dusting”, as he calls it. He says, “You must feel Hawaiian Music,” evident in his award winning recordings featured on Nā Hōkū Hanohano and Grammy nominated CD’s which have also garnered many awards. He blends all that he’s learned, as an accompanist, into his own unique sound.
Bryan has performed and recorded with notable Hawaiian entertainers such as: Raiatea Helm, Jake Shimabukuro, Herb Ohta, Jr., Halehaku Seabury, Aunty Genoa Keawe, Pomaika‘i Lyman, Karen Keawehawai‘i, Ku‘uipo Kumukahi, Marlene Sai, Jerry Santos and Olomana, O’Brian Eselu, Nathan Aweau, Frank Hewett, Byron Yasui, Benny Chong, Kalei Gamiao, ‘Elua Kane, Sonny Lim, Keoki Kahumoku, Owana Salazar, Weldon Kekauoha, Natalie Ai, ‘Iolani Kamau‘u, Napua Greig, Kuana Torres Kahele, Aaron Salā, The Side Order Band – where Bryan played with Del Beazley, Chris Kamaka and Asa Young, Keao Costa, and Blaine Kamalani Kia.
Bryan also worked with award winning hula hālau, engineers and producers. The noted halau includes: Na Wai ‘Eha O Puna, Hālau Kekuaokalā‘au‘ala‘iliahi, Hālau Maoli Pua, Ka Pā Hula O Kauanoe O Wa‘ahila, Keali‘ika’apunihonua Ke‘ena A‘o Hula, Hālau Ka Liko Pua O Kalaniakea and Kuhai Hālau O Kawaikapuokalani Pa Olapa Kahiko. Engineers and producers: Dave Tucciarone, Milan Bertosa, Steve Kramer, Gaylord Holomalia, Flip McDiarmid, Shawn Pimental, Kip and Max Ebersbach, all among the best in the music business.
In May 2005, Bryan opened another musical chapter by releasing his solo CD “Ka ‘Ukulele Lele” that became a Nā Hōkū Hanohano finalist for Instrumental Album of the year.
Ten years later in April 2015, he released a duet CD, “Ukulele Friends”, with Herb Ohta Jr. that received a Nā Hōkū Hanohano award for 2016 ‘Ukulele Album of the Year.
In the Summer of 2016, he expanded his role by joining the Performing Arts Academy at Kamehameha Schools – Kapalama campus, educating young adults interested in learning and performing the ‘ukulele. he released a second duet CD with Herb Ohta Jr. ‘Ukulele Friends: The Sequel In December 2017. In January 2018, he was hired as a substitute to teach Hawaiian Ensemble at Punahou School.
Bryan Tolentino continues to travel locally, nationally and internationally, sharing his love for the ‘ukulele through performances and workshops.