Kimo (Hawaiian for James), was born in Honolulu, Hawaii. This amiable keyboard genius of Hawaiian, Chinese and English ancestry grew up in Kalihi and graduated from Farrington High School. Blessed with the love of music and a palate for ‘plate lunch,’ Kimo soon became renown as one of the best keyboard players from the islands.
After playing and recording with most of the top groups in Hawaii, Kimo and his wife Debbie, moved to Los Angeles to try his hand in the ‘mainland’ music scene. Immediately discovered by touring groups, Kimo hit the road first with Cheryl Lynn (“To Be Real”), and then with a succession of artists including Ronnie Laws, Al Jarreau, Frankie Beverly and Maze — and off and on with a unique L.A. band named Hiroshima. Actually during the period of the mid-eighties Kimo was being pulled at by Hiroshima, then Jarreau, then Maze, then Hiroshima, then Maze then . . . you get the picture. Eventually his head gave way to his heart, and he has since bit the pocketbook and become a fulltime mainstay with the band. Working in the capacity of keyboardist, composer, arranger and producer he has become part of the heart and soul of the music.