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Jim Romano: Bio

Jim Romano

Jim Romano is a Guitarist / Singer / Songwriter.

Born and raised in California, Jim began playing guitar at the age of 10.  He grew up playing rock, blues, classical guitar and a little jazz.

In the early 1970s, Jim was introduced to Ki ho'alu (the style of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar).He has been playing mostly Hawaiian music since 1989, drawing on a blend of traditional and other musical elements in his arrangements and original compositions.

"I love the rich, full sound of the guitar in open tuning. Using the thumb and fingers to play the bass lines, chords and melody in a variety of tunings transforms the guitar into a wonderfully creative solo instrument".


Jim and his wife, Tracy, live in the San Francisco Bay Area and have been going to Hawai'i every year or two since 1989. "We fell in love with the islands, the people, the culture and the Aloha Spirit. My ear was already tuned to the music and soon our house was full with the sounds of Gabby Pahinui, Aunty Genoa Keawe, Israel Kamakawiwa'ole, Keola Beamer, Dennis Kamakahi and Ozzie Kotani. The music of Hawai'i filled the air and our hearts. We joined a halau, danced hula and made our own dance costumes. We were married on Maui, and we go back to Hawai'i almost every year. It always feels like coming home and the music keeps us connected when we are away."


Also a healer, Jim has been working as a massage therapist since 1987, blending massage styles with Polarity Therapy and Reiki healing energy work. He uses the relaxing sounds of slack key guitar and Hawaiian music in his work "to soothe, heal and restore."


Jim also plays Hawaiian music with Paula Kauapalauki Rudman in the vocal / guitar duo, Pulama.   "I met Paula in 2003. We drove from Albany to Danville together to attend a Reiki Master Class. We listened to Ki ho 'alu all the way to Danville. After the class, we sang Hawaiian songs on the way back to Albany. We have been singing together since then. It is rare to find two voices that blend so well". "Paula is an amazing healer and she sings like an angel. She has a creative and refined ability for arranging vocal lines and harmony parts. Add to that her perfectly intuitive sense for giving our music just the right balance, flow and finishing touches and you can hear why Pulama sounds like velvet for the heart".