For John Rivera, music is a release, a passion, a form of expression. As a young boy, John was introduced to the world’s greatest Motown stars through his mother’s playlist, which included Smokey Robinson, Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, and Stevie Wonder. Now the lead vocalist for the John Rivera Trio, Ho’aikane, and founding member of Greenstone Project, John is using those influences to take music to the next level.
By 19, John joined his first professional band as a ukulele player/vocalist for Kainoa Ohana. He quickly decided to put music on hold to pursue his dream of playing collegiate and professional football. He leS the island to attend Shasta College and later Humboldt State University where he earned an AA in Education and a BA in Native American Studies with an emphasis in law.
After four years of college football and a quick stint in pro arena ball, John decided to move back home to put his degrees to work. He returned to Kauai and entered the workforce as a substance abuse counselor, but after a few years, the music industry started tugging him back to his love of music.
His goal when he left his 9-to-5 for a career in music was to simply survive playing full time. But his band, originally called Aloha Breeze, surpassed all expectations, rising to become the reigning A-list corporate band on Kauai. Now widely known and loved as Greenstone Project, John’s band of top musicians boasts a caliber of musicianship, vocals, and music selection that is second to none. The John Rivera Trio and Greenstone Project are without a doubt music industry forces that demands to be reckoned with and offers something for everyone.
“My personal mission is to spread Aloha around the world through music. I truly believe that music is food for the soul.” ~ John Rivera
Hometown: Kalaheo, Kaua'i
Sport: Hunting and surfing
Occupation: Professional Musician
Favorite Local Food: Squid Luau, Lumpia
What school you grad: Kaimuki
What is your biggest dream: Winning a Hoku would be amazing, but my ultimate goal would be to win a Grammy.
What does Tamba mean to you: To me, Tamba is synonymous with Kaua'i. It's more than just a surf brand that goes way beyond the brick and mortar of the surf shop. It represents a lifestyle that truly epitomizes the aloha spirit of our beautiful island. At it's core, Tamba embodies 'ohana, friendship, adventure, and aloha. Tamba isn't just a brand, it is a way of life!
You can catch John live on Kaua'i at any of his reoccurring weekly gigs:
Monday's: Keoki's Paradise from 5:30-7:30 (duo- John and Darren)
Wednesdays: the Shops at Kukui'ula from 4:00-6:00 (John Rivera Trio)
Thursdays: Duke's 4:00-6:00 (duo- John and Pali)
Sundays: Duke's 4:00-6:00 (John Rivera Trio)