Nesian Mystik mixed Māori, Tongan, Samoan and Cook Island heritage to become one of the biggest names in New Zealand music. The group started out in the late 90s in the music room of Auckland's Western Springs College, and were soon joined by St Paul's College student Feleti Strickson-Pua. The band's major influences included R’n’B, hip hop, reggae, and their central Auckland Polynesian upbringing. Guitarist David Atai and vocalist Donald McNulty also composed music for hit show bro 'Town. The group finally called it quits in early 2011 — after 10 years, 11 New Zealand top 10 singles, and four albums.
This documentary charts the journey of Auckland hip hop band Nesian Mystik, from their beginnings as an inner-city school band at Western Springs to gold albums and international acclaim. Filmed in New Zealand, London and Tonga the documentary explores the multi-cultural roots of the band members and the inspiration for their lyrics. Director Makerita Urale uses the Nesian Mystik story as a lens to reflect the wider picture of Māori, Pacific Island and Pakeha society in New Zealand.
This episode from a series for high school music students features Auckland hip-hop act Nesian Mystik who can speak from personal experience about music education after forming at Western Springs College and first making an impression in Rockquest's Pacifica Beats. They perform stripped down versions of their APRA Silver Scroll winner 'For the People', and 'Better than Change' (written by Dallas Tamaira of Fat Freddy's Drop) and emphasise how simple music making can be — they started out with just their voices and a Playstation One programme.
Auckland Museum's Volume exhibition told the story of Kiwi pop music. It's time to turn the speakers up to 11, for NZ On Screen's biggest collection yet. Turning Up the Volume showcases NZ music and musicians. Drill down into playlists of favourite artists and topics (look for the orange labels). Plus NZOS Content Director Kathryn Quirk on NZ music on screen.
It's the holidays: time to let your hair down, have a swim, give in to your appetite...and have a boogie. From Kings to The Clean, from 'Ten Guitars' to 'Trippin', let NZ On Screen supply the music, with this epic playlist of classic Kiwi party songs. In the backgrounder, music fan and publicity maestro Nicky Harrop takes us through the tracks, before bidding adieu to NZ On Screen.
“Hello my name is ...” This starts out as a happy video for the song ‘Operation Fob’, but the smiles soon disappear as the band walk away from set and head through Auckland city. They head for a community centre for a meeting of ‘Brothaz Anonymous’. The skeptical janitor watches from the doorway as band member and ‘bros’ gets up and express. The band then plays a series of group therapy games and eventually, bust out the guitar and ask the janitor to join in. End result? Brothaz in arms. ‘Brothaz’ was the fifth single from the hit Polysaturated album.
The concept for this 2003 video sees the Nesian boys preparing for a party while snapping and sharing (probably then-expensive) 'pixt' photos of each other and the Mystik people in their lives. The perils of public snoozing in the mobile age are shown. As music video aficionado Robyn Gallagher has noted elsewhere, this snap happy, pre-smartphone video nearly anticipates that in the future, "an entire music video will be able to be shot on a phone camera." 'For the People' was a Top 10 single from Nesian Mystik’s hit album Polysaturated.
In this Dave Garbett-directed Nesian Mystik music video a secret force of Polynesian Grey Lynn agents work to unify the community by taking their message to the streets, then to a television station. In scenes that showcase the band's sense of humour — and echoing a real-life 1995 takeover of One Network News by Māori protestors — the boys manage to take over the airwaves, where they transmit their own brand of 'Nesian programming: from master-chefing taro and bully beef to bro-senting the news. ‘Unity’ was a Top 10 single from the hit Polysaturated album.
Actor Michelle Ang (The Tribe) stars in this Nesian Mystik music video which features beautiful people partying. Ang's character meets band member Te Awanui Reeder in the street, where he gets her phone number. Later she meets up with him and the rest of the Nesian Mystik crew at a party. The track, which peaked at number five on the Kiwi music charts, features a sample from The Style Council's 'Shout to the Top'. The Auckland hip hop group produced a record-breaking 11 Top 10 singles, and were key to the commercial breakthrough of Kiwi hip hop in the early 2000s.
Luke Sharpe’s video for the 2008 number one hit sets out to educate audiences about the Nesian style: replete with graffiti hibiscus, hawaiian shirts ... and hot teacher. The band is shot in front of a green screen, with totems uniting their central Auckland upbringing with their ancestral Polynesian past shown behind them. From baggy jeans to greenstone pendants, corned beef to fish’n’chips, the references nod to the South Pacific influences on the Mystik sound: “Just keep it fresh no matter where you be.” It won Best Hip Hop Video at the 2008 Juice TV Awards.