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Series Classification: G (General Audiences) | Watch the series here
John Kingi (Ngāti Kahu) drops in for a kōrero with Chop and to share a waiata that has been influential in his journey as an artist. The 28-year-old singer-songwriter takes on "I Taku Tūranga Ake" in a contemporary cover of one of the north's most well-known waiata. Performing this waiata has a special meaning to John:
“It makes me think about my older brother, who, when I was a child, passed away.”
Stripped back vocals and an acoustic guitar are all he needs to portray the tender sentiment of the waiata, which expresses being overcome with grief. His heartfelt vocal performance shows the deep connection he has to the lyrics and mamae (pain) he and his whānau suffered through the loss of his brother.
“My entire family were filled with grief... but now every time I sing this song, I am filled with joy and happiness.”
In John’s second waiata, he takes to the piano to perform an original waiata tangi (lament), "Kairangi," which he wrote as a way to process his grief.
“The meaning of this song is directing you to acknowledge your grief and to recognise the emotions within you.”
John expresses the inner strength required to work through your emotions, and mechanisms for coping with the challenges that appear before you.
“Personally, the meaning of this song is directing you to acknowledge your grief and to recognise the emotions within you, and with this you are able to carry on in spite of what comes your way, or appears before you.”