Title: Tautoko Album
Track breakdown continued, catch part one here.
6. Walk Tall Aotearoa (Prod. by Tipene)
Iearning how to speak te reo maori really boosted my pride and love for my maori heritage. This track was inspired by my travels to the Bronx NY in 05′ and an appreciation of what it means to know where your from and the fact that I have Turangawaewae (place to stand) a home in this world called Aotearoa(NZ). I saw alot of racism and extreme living conditions in America which reminded me of a song I remember seeing on a TV add in the early 90′s, New Zealand theme song reminded me how we(Maori & Pakeha) live along side one another in harmony as one nation. NZ is the best place in the world to live.
7. Strife cycle ft. Mum (Prod. by KRM)
I met KRM at the Welli DJ battles while performing alongside my bro “DJ Abbott” in 04′ where he gave me a beat cd. I was playing it at home and my Mum come over for tea one night and heard it playing then started humming this tune. She pinned the sample and ironically the song was big at the time she fell pregnant with me. She ran away and had me in Turangi because of the differences my parents had over my birth. Mum was a singer but, never really persued a career due to having us kids at a young age. Mum agreed to sing on the track which to my knowledge hadn’t been done in hiphop.The lyrics from the original song “…my eyes adore you, though I never layed a hand on you…” I invisioned a mother talking to her un-born child in her puku(stomach) which meant that the lyrics would fit nicely. We got into the studio and Mum sung the whole lot in the first take and it was so moving that I left it the way it was. Mum passed from breast cancer early 2011 so this song immortalized her in music and our relationship. The song title basically is a play on ‘life cycle’ but starting 2 steps behind,hence ‘strife cycle’.The story of a young solo mother and her son. R.I.P Mama.
8. Hearty Kahungunu remix (Prod. by Stephen Greater)
Hearty Kahungunu being my most well known of my song needed to be brought to 2012 and deserved a remix. A talented young Australian-based producer by the name of Stephen Greater picked up the challenge and put a whole new face on the song. Music is universal and this track is a prime example of how 2 artists from 2 very different walks of life can come together to produce such a gem.
9. Letter to the Starrs ft. Teva Valentine (Prod. by ZombeatZ)
This song was inspired by the death of my nephew “Richard Starr Harmer” who died in 07′ as a result of drink driving and speeding. I found this track very difficult to record and put it off for ages. But when I was approached by roadsafe NZ to perform for 3000 year 11 students in Hawkes Bay to educate them on drink driving, I felt it was time to conquer it. The death of Richard made me reflect on all of the “Starrs” in my life and how we should cherish the time we have on earth because we never know when our time is up. This track adresses my past present and future as a man, trying to better myself to benefit our future generations, paying homage to those of significants to me, hopefully in the process saving a life or two. Now that’s “cracking it!” in my eyes.
10. Tautoko ft. Prince Tui Teka (Prod. by AdZe)
A Close friend came up to me one day at work and said “I’ve got something you might like bro..” He played me the sample and I was instantly drawn to it. One of NZ’s most beloved entertainers and one of my personal all-time favourite artists Prince Tui Teka. Funnily enought this was the first beat he’d ever produced which was hard to believe. This song reflects on my ambitions as an artist,a father,a son,a husband and a friend and how anything can be achieved with the right Tautoko(support). The feature track of the Tautoko album pays homage to a some of NZ’s greatest entertainers who without the tautoko(support) of their families, friends and fans wouldn’t be the legends they are today. Tehei mauri ora!
Dedicated to Mum and Richie. R.I.P