Viral Matisyahu Video Earns Maui Prisoner A Furlough To Hollywood

Last week a viral video made the rounds that showed a Hawaiin man, Clint Alama, playing Matisyahu’s “One Day” on ukulele in a coffee shop. Somehow, Matisyahu himself happened to be in the exact same coffee shop where this was happening, and his bassist Stu Brooks filmed the roots-reggae star joining in on vocals with the local, who didn’t recognize Matisyahu even though he was covering his song. We originally didn’t post the video because it seemed staged, but it turns out that it was not! Matisyahu later invited Alama to perform with him at his show at the Hollywood Palladium later this week.

There was a snag, however, because the uke player had a warrant out for his arrest because of a probation violation after an assault conviction, according to the Associated Press. A Maui prosecuting attorney who saw the viral video looked into Alama’s case, and arranged it so that he would be allowed to travel to Hollywood for the show if he agreed to turn himself in. So Alama did just that. He’ll be allowed to leave jail, take a red-eye to LA, perform “One Day” with Matisyahu on Friday, and then return to Maui immediately after. Matisyahu’s camp is handling the travel arrangements.

“He’s been given an opportunity to showcase his talent. We decided far be it from us to hold him back,” the prosecutor told the AP. “That’s the true meaning of aloha— to give these guys a second chance, to understand their circumstances. Now it’s on him.”

Matisyahu meanwhile has not looked for details about the initial assault conviction and bassist Brooks tells AP they’re willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Tags: Matisyahu