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Artist Spotlight

Te Marama puoro o Aotearoa is here (New Zealand Music month). This week SOUNZ shines the spotlight on Kaaterama. Nina Lesperance from SOUNZ spoke with Kaaterama to hear what New Zealand Music month means to her. 

Ko Maunga Kohatu me Horohoro ngā maunga
Ko Pokaitu me Mangakahia nga awa
Ko Te Aroha me Kearoa nga marae
Ko Ngati Te Rino me Ngati Kea Ngati Tuara nga hapu
Ko Ngapuhi me Te Arawa nga iwi

How did you first discover music?

If I remember all the stories that have been told to me by my parents and grandparents I discovered music when I was baby. Use to scream my lungs out use to get my hands on anything that could make a sound and I’m honestly blessed to have been brought up in that type of environment. Doing music now since I’m of age and discovering all the tools to make it in the music industry is a blessing

 Congratulations on being a finalist for APRA Silver Scroll Maioha Award for your waiata, ‘Paiheretia’ in 2019. What was the inspiration behind this waiata?

Inspiration around composing Paiheretia was actually a proverb taken from my church book

Which is “Paiheretia ki te Rangimarie” which translates to “Bringing together peace, love and harmony of all people” when I read through the proverb a little light flickered in my brain that this word right here will be my next song to compose. Composing Paiheretia was actually the easiest song that I’ve written maybe because it was meant to be or the meaning behind it was so special the words and music just came like a flowing river. Im very thankful to my Uncle Rob who only gave me a few hours to compose this waiata.

You have been working with the collective Maimoa, how have you found collaborating with these other Māori artists?

Working with this bunch of beautiful talented humans has been a rollercoaster to say the least, they have taught me resilience and patiences but I wouldn’t want it any other way. We treat each other like brothers and sisters we’re a huge whanau who has each others back no matter what. Each and every one of them are unique in there own right all musically talented I’m very grateful to be a part of the Maimoa whanau inspiring our rangatahi to chase there dreams.

The music video for ‘He iti’ was filmed in Taiwan, can you tell us what this experience was like?

Filming over in Taiwan was such a cool experience, the people there are so kind and very loving. The culture is so unique that you wouldn’t find it anywhere else but in Taiwan. I was very blessed and honoured to be filming over there showcasing both cultures to the world to see and appreciate like I did. There’s such a meaningful message behind the song “He Iti” which is “Encouraging people especially young youth to look after all gods creations” so being over in Taiwan and sharing stories with there people filming over there fitted perfectly with the song

Do you have anything coming up that the SOUNZ audience should keep an eye out for?

I’m currently working on phase two of my ep Album which I’m excited to be doing after releasing my first project nearly two years ago. I’m also working on an Album and Ep Album for both bands that I’m involved in who are Maimoa Music and Origin Roots which is very exciting. We are covering so many intense deep kaupapa around all the issues that we as Māori people face, also indigenous people around the world struggle with so I’m super excited for everyone to hear the next albums.

 What does NZ music month mean to you?

Music month for me is celebrating everything and anything that comes from home. Celebrating all our artist who works really hard to bring out exceptional and beautiful music for everyone to hear