Taking the name Mana (a word that denotes respect, authority, or power and is common to many Oceanic cultures) for his artistic identity, vocalist and songwriter Kaleilani Caceres set out on a musical path that would lead to more than just record sales. Hailing from Kapolei, Hawaii, Mana emerged around 2000 not only as an artist, but as a prophetic voice for the freedom of his people. The release of his 2003 disc, Who I Am, and its success throughout the Pacific Islands are an indication not only of Mana's musical talent, but of Pacific Islanders' desire to have their voices heard. In the tradition of musicians such as Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, and Bob Marley, who used their platforms to give voice to political unrest, Mana is widely viewed as the speaker box for an otherwise ignored demographic. His 2003 release generated hits such as "Couldn't Take the Mana" and "Mainland Mentality," which have remained on Island radio charts ever since. Choosing reggae as his stylistic home base will inevitably lead to comparisons with Marley, who also used his skillful songwriting almost exclusively as a soapbox from which to air grievances and to demand a better life for his people. Incorporating elements of R&B and hip-hop, Mana has become a grassroots hero for his generation of Native Hawaiians. ~ Evan C. Gutierrez, Rovi