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Date Posted: 23:42:47 06/13/04 Sun
Author: Vanessa Bidois
Subject: Maori musician at Athens concert

MEDIA STATEMENT / PANUI PAPAHO

Te 13 o nga ra o Pipiri / 13 Pipiri 2004

KI A:

Chief Reporter
Arts and Entertainment Editor
Maori Affairs Reporter

MAORI MUSICIAN JOINS HEADLINE ACT AT ATHENS CONCERT

Maori language recording star Whirimako Black will perform with
internationally acclaimed world music act 1 GIANT LEAP at a pre-Olympic
Games concert in Athens later this month (June).

The Tui Award-winning singer-songwriter has accepted an invitation to
join Babaa Maal and Maxi Jazz as feature vocalists at the headline
performance on June 21 while also recording new material for a second
album by 1 GIANT LEAP.

The Auckland-based musician released her third album of contemporary
Maori music, 'Tangihaku', on Ngati Whatua-owned label Mai Music at the
end of last month (May).

Mai Music general manager Victor Stent says the massive concert is the
climax of a three-day outdoor music festival being staged in and around
the city of Athens to kick off the celebrations leading up to the start
of the Olympics in August.

Whirimako featured on two tracks on the debut 1 GIANT LEAP album which
went on to become a runaway best-seller on the world music scene.

One of the songs she co-wrote, 'Ta Moko', was later used in the hit movie
Bulletproof Monk and the soundtrack album while footage shot during the
world-wide musical recording project was released on DVD and shown on
TVNZ.

Victor Stent says the brains behind the 1 GIANT LEAP project, Jamie Catto
and Duncan Bridgman, will work with Whirimako while she in Athens on the
second album and film - this time backed by Simon Fuller of Spice Girls
and Idol fame.

He says there is even talk of a third album to eventually complete the
concept, perhaps supported by a world tour.

"With a licensing deal just agreed for one of Whirimako's tracks to
appear on a forthcoming compilation album from top US world music label,
Putumayo Records, and her much-anticipated third album just released in
New Zealand, the 1 GIANT LEAP offer represents a huge opportunity to
broaden her market well beyond this country.

"It will firmly establish Whirimako as one of our most extraordinary and
exciting musical exports."

'Tangihaku' presents the Auckland-based musician in an intimate recording
with acoustic guitarist Joel Haines - younger brother of Kiwi jazz star
Nathan Haines - and her long-time collaborator, Justin Kereama, on taonga
puoro (traditional instruments).

The album is based on a collection of poems written by her mother,
Anituatua Black, and sister, Rangitunoa Black, set to music composed by
Whirimako and her sister, and subsequently arranged for these sessions by
Joel Haines.

Of Ngai Tuhoe, Ngati Tuwharetoa, Ngati Ranginui, Kahungunu, Te
Whakatohea, Te Whanau-a-Apanui, Te Arawa, and Ngati Awa descent,
Whirimako won Best Maori Language Album at the 2001 NZ Music Awards for
her debut album, 'Hinepukohurangi: Shrouded in the Mist'.

'Tangihaku' is released by Mai Music - part of the Mai Media stable of
companies - and is distributed by Out There Distribution.

ENDS

For more information, contact Mai Music general manager Victor Stent on
09 9777 835, 0275 777 835 or victor@maimusic.co.nz or Mai Media
communications manager Vanessa Bidois on 0275 777 838 or
vanessa@maimedia.co.nz.

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