TRT: 6min 26sec
The Garden Island LIHUE — Singer-songwriter Makana wasn’t planning on recording “Mourning Armageddon” in decommissioned Russian bunker 703.
He didn’t have a note written down when he ventured deep under Moscow, in the now-deserted nuclear bomb shelter, formerly a repository for the Soviet Foreign Ministry’s archives and disguised as a chocolate factory during the Cold War.
But, when he got down there, he was overwhelmed with sobering thoughts of nuclear war and the threat that hit so close to his Hawaii home on Jan. 13, 2018 — so overwhelmed that all he could do was make music. “That song came to me on the spot,” said Makana, born Matthew Swalinkavich. “Every once in a while that happens, but most of the time when I create a song on the spot, it’s a comedy song.”
Makana was in Russia on a personal fact-finding mission. He wanted to understand the Russian people and culture on his own terms without using the lens provided by American media and politics.
To that end, he partnered with friends Bruce Allyn and Cynthia Lazaroff, who, after also experiencing the “gut-punch” of the Hawaii missile scare, as Makana puts it, founded NuclearWakeUpCall.Earth to awaken people to today’s nuclear danger.
By Jessica Else The Garden Island | Sunday, January 13, 2019