Arts Post
Posted at 02:25 PM ET, 11/14/2011

Makana sings Occupy protests songs to President Obama and APEC leaders

President Barack Obama is busy in his home state of Hawaii meeting with Pacific Rim leaders on matters of global security and world economy. Even though Obama decided to skip the practice of goofy costumes at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the leaders are still getting a healthy sampling of the Hawaiian culture. One such display, though, may not be exactly what the White House had in mind.
Makana performs at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit leaders' reception in Honolulu, Hawaii with a T-shirt saying “Occupy with Aloha.” (Yes Lab/AFP/Getty Images)

Makana, a popular Hawaiin troubador, was enlisted to sing and play his guitar in the background at a dinner Obama and other leaders attended Saturday night. His song of choice: a 45-minute montage of protest songs, all while wearing a shirt that read “Occupy with Aloha.”

After the dinner, Makana said the diners did not react in a negative way to his message — and may have been too busy sampling the Hawaiian food to notice.

Makana’s manager filmed it for the Yes Men, the activist group that regularly stages pranks on the media and government.

Music has been a big part of the Occupy Wall Street protests, with famous musicians dropping in on the encampments around the country. But this is probably the first time the movement has brought its music to the president.

Here Makana talks about his subtle message to Obama after the dinner:

And here’s a video of the song:

By  |  02:25 PM ET, 11/14/2011

Read what others are saying

    © 2011 The Washington Post Company