Listen/Watch ‘Kia Mau’ HERE
Artwork by Mike Looker
Inspired by recent events and experiences the pair have released their stunning new Waiata and video clip for ‘Kia Mau’. Aro, proudly brought together, for this very special video, their family and friends - coming together to emphasise the importance of maintaining relationships and respect for people even if we don't agree with them.
‘Kia Mau’ comes off the back of their Top 10 NZ single ‘Tohorā’, released earlier this year. ‘Tohora’ captured hearts & minds around the Motu with the pairs stunning vocals, the videos quintessential, breathtaking New Zealand imagery and the delightful young cast.
Timed perfectly for NZ Music Month, they further this recent success with ‘Kia Mau’, featuring ‘Aro’s’ signature playful and uplifting sound, with vocals melding together perfectly and with an awareness of recent covid related divisions between families and friends, nationwide, at the forefront.
“Our waiata "Kia Mau" is about maintaining relationships and respect with people even if we don't agree with them. "He tapu te tangata ahakoa ko wai" is a mātāpono from the founding document, Te Aho Matua, of kura kaupapa Māori that Charles learnt while at school. It means that a person is sacred no matter who they are or where they come from - or what their opinion is.”
Silver Scroll APRA Maioha Award and APRA Best Children’s Award Finalists, ‘Aro’, are made up of husband and wife Charles (Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa, Ngāti Te Ata, Te Ati Awa) and Emily Looker (nee Rice). The Auckland based pair share a passion for the power of language and music to tell stories and remind us of our cultural identity. The pair have become well known for their multi-genre offering of storytelling pop, RnB, electronic and jazz, fusing vocals, tāonga puoro and chants, and for often exploring the ideas of kaitiakitanga and manaakitanga - looking after ourselves, looking after each other and looking after our environment.
The duo are also taking their music on the road through June in celebration of Kia Mau and their recent releases. This will be the first time fans and music lovers around the motu will have the chance to hear these songs live , due to covid 19 cancelling 3 of their tours over the past couple of years. The pair are performing from Auckland to Bluff during and around Matariki 2022, as part of the Te Waipounamu Matariki programme - where they will be bringing workshops to schools and public spaces as well as being part of Matariki festivals, and a few ticketed shows along the way. Tour Details below
For the ‘Kia Mau’ video, the pair proudly brought together some of their whanau & friends to put differences aside and unite for this ever-important message. Directed and produced by Tom Grut - who they had the pleasure of working with in the past on projects like their charming single Baby Beat.
“The cast consists of our real family and friends, some of who were a little hesitant to be on camera but tautoko the kaupapa, each with our own beliefs and political views to truly represent what we’re singing about. ‘Kia Mau’ is an encouragement and an invitation to engage in conversation with others, listening to try to understand each other, eye to eye, face to face - kanohi ki te kanohi, and it doesn't mean we have to agree with each other either.”
Photos by Cara Graham
HUGE thanks to NZ on Air & Te Māngai Paho for the support of Waiata Takitahi funding on this project!!
Aro 2022 Matariki Tour Dates:
Tour details - Details and tickets can be found at aromusic.co.nz/shows
Sat 4th June | Taste of Pasifika - 3pm on Queens Wharf, Auckland Details
Friday 10th June | The Raumati Social Club - 7pm Tickets
Tuesday 14th June | The Academy, Geraldine - 7pm
Sat 18th June | Bellamys Gallery, Dunedin - 7pm
Friday 24th June | Murihiku Matariki, Queens Park Invercargill 6 - 8pm
Saturday 25th June | Invercargill Public Library 11 am
Saturday 25th June | Winton Public Library 3 pm
Saturday 25th June | Murihiku Matariki Queens Park Invercargill 6- 8pm
Thursday 30th June | Puketeraki marae Karitane - public workshop and show from 6.30 pm
Friday 1st July | Araiteuru marae - public workshop and show from 6.30 pm
Sat 2nd July | Te Whare o Rukutia – A pou for Ōtepoti’s performing arts community 2-4 pm
Sat 8th July | Auckland Art Gallery - family show 10.30am