Hawaiian Music Is Bait For Returning Visitors
The most popular radio show in Hawaii, before and after World War II, was "Hawaii Calls," produced by Webley Edwards. The show was carried by over 600 radio stations plus the armed forces around the world.
The show was bought by Randolph Crossley, head of Hawaii Corp., who wanted to build an entertainment empire. Webley Edwards died and so did the Hawaii Corp. With everything going into receivership, McDiarmid bought the "Hawaii Calls" assets, which included boxes of "Hawaii Calls" tapes stored in the flooded basement of Alexander Young Hotel.
"'Hawaii calls' is still a very salable name," said McDiarmid. "Every year I take a 'Hawaii Calls' troupe to Japan and sell out auditorium after auditorium at $100 a seat. Do you know that there are more Hawaiian halau in Japan than there are in Hawaii?"