Tucked away in a corner office at the co-working space of BoxJelly, Central Pacific Time (CPT) founders Lei and Roger Bong are getting ready to stream live for their afternoon online show. The duo are no strangers to Hawaiʻi’s music scene. Known by many in the Honolulu community for their record label, Aloha Got Soul, the two are highly tuned in to Hawaiʻi’s music scene.
Back in college, both hosted their own radio shows at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and University of Oregon. After creating and expanding on Aloha Got Soul (AGS), they began to collaborate with other radio platforms, such as Worldwide FM and Red Light Radio, which are both internet-based radio stations. In 2017, AGS traveled to Brooklyn with Flux Hawaiʻi for the inaugural Flux Sound Event. There, Roger did a show on the radio station called The Lot.
“After having those experiences” Lei says, “we thought having a community station here would be really interesting because it’ll give people a foundation, as far as promoting a show or a new project.” They also saw the potential for another outlet to share Hawaiʻi-based talent to a global audience, with music and talk shows hosted by familiar names such as DJ Bradley, Scott Ohtoro, Gnaraly, Mark Kushimi and Justin Nakasone.
With the evolution of technology serving as its overarching theme, the interface of radio and how radio is accessed is a subject CPT considers heavily as streaming service platforms grow and expand. Being online is crucial to connecting Hawaiʻi’s past, present, and future sound with those listening in from around the world.
The first broadcast of CPT launched on January 1, 2018, right from their Honolulu apartment living room. During that first live show, they had 10 people tune in, a small, but encouraging audience, which solidified and reassured the pair that CPT was indeed happening.
“After that, we started to build because it included an audience from countries like Japan, Canada, Portugal, and beyond,” says Lei. “Our goal starting out was in six months, have a physical space. By the end of January, we knew that we were moving in to BoxJelly. It was a really good sign.”
Rechung Fujihira, owner of BoxJelly, met the creators behind the upcoming online radio station and was enthralled with the plan. Fujihira reached out to CPT once a space opened up to create a central hub where they can work, stream live, and invite others to collaborate. With the two platforms working parallel towards the goal of building community, it was inevitable for their paths to meet and work stronger together towards that same goal.
Building community is exactly what this station is doing. “For now, everything is going to be locally based, recording and broadcasting here. Just so we can focus on the immediate community around us right now, because that’s what’s most important,” Roger says. Now three months into the platform, CPT is continuously building its roster of collaborators, hosts and DJs, with shows diversifying in many genres of music from jazz, punk, folk, hip-hop, emo, and so much more. First setting the station on the focus as shared time and space, what they believe radio is, will now even bring a mix of recorded podcasts, live shows and live video streaming into the mix.
“It’s grown out of our love for music,” Lei says, “and it’s kind of what we do naturally, on a day to day.”
Below, we have featured 6 diverse CPT Radio shows and their hosts, where selected their song of choice at the moment to listen in on.
Leilow – Flow Show (Ambient / New Wave Jazz, Soul / Funk)
Highlighting new independent music from around the world, and looking back into the archives of music for flow. Interested in the distinctive tones, colors, and techniques of jazz, while diversifying my fixed definition of the genre.
Song: 90 Degrees by Yazmine Lacey
Jhune Liwanag and Rawb Cunningham – Mopetown USA (DIY, Emo, Indie, Punk)
Mopetown USA, is a small community with a population of 2: Jhune Liwang and Rawb Cunningham, musicians and show promoters in O’ahu’s art scene. But we welcome you to our one stop internet shop for general doom and gloom, with a focus on, but not limited to, indie, punk, and emo.
Song of choice:
Jhune’s song: Untitled God Song by Haley Heynderickx
Rawb’s song: Big Brain by The Spirit of the Beehive
Khari Saffo – New Sound, New Month (Electronic, Hip-Hop, Rock, Soul)
Each month Khari puts together a playlist based on a central theme. The theme changes every month ranging from love songs, songs about fans, best heavy smoker singers. Whatever theme Khari feels best suits the current month. Join Khari as he weaves interesting threads across genres.
Song: Give My All by Stimulator Jones
DJ Revise/Tittahbyte – About The Goods Live (Electronic, Hip-Hop, Live Events)
Every month About The Goods’ owners DJ Revise and Tittahbyte highlight new and familiar music from all over the world while bringing visibility to local and underground artists.
Song of Choice:
Riana’s song: Miss Me by Leikeli47
Robin’s song: Bad Bad News by Leon Bridges
Ken Selders – No Love Lost (Variety)
Hosted by SPELLS founder Ken Selders, No Love Lost is a Variety Radio show. Playing anything and everything that needs to be heard. You will hear anything from Roy Ayers to Aphex Twin or from Johnny Cash to MF Doom.
Song: Lil Mufukuz (ft. MF DOOM) by Dabrye