A true “island son”, Elias Jr. was born on the island of O’ahu and raised in the windward town of Kane’ohe. His musical influences, like many, began at home. The sweet voice of his mother singing is a cherished early memory. His father’s favorite past time was kanikapila while camping at Kahana Bay with ‘ohana and friends. Elias’ grandparents (Sam and Annie Kauhane) were well known in the early Waikiki music scene and performed with many of the greats of that golden period, such as Aunty Genoa Keawe, Marlene Sai and Sonny Chillingworth.
Elias attended Kamehameha Schools from 1973 to 1979. As a member of the acclaimed Kamehameha Schools Concert Glee Choir he sang tenor alongside Tony Conjugacion, Lopaka Ho’opii, Pomaikai Brown, Rupert Tripp, Jr., Weymouth Kamakana and other noted vocalist. His love for Hawaiian music was deeply ingrained under the guidance of his music instructors Robert Cazimero, Wayne Chang, Zillah Young and Dale Noble.
Elias combines his love of Hawaiian music, musical education and offers to you mele that were dear to his mother, Elizabeth Carmen Kanohohookahi Ako. Although she has passed from this life, her ‘uhane remains and this music keeps us connected.