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Spotlight

Freedom to Sing – NZ Protest Songs

Curated by the NZ On Screen team . 12 Items

Standing up for your rights has long linked arms with singing for your rights. This  Spotlight collection brings together some of New Zealand’s great protest songs, with subject matter ranging from Māori pride and resistance ('E Tu' and 'Parihaka'), to the nuclear free campaign ('French Letter', ...

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Spotlight

Shona Laing - Venerable Tui

Curated by the NZ On Screen team . 6 Items

Pioneering singer-songwriter Shona Laing was inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame in 2013. Her four decades in the music business began in 1972 when the 17-year-old won notice on TV talent show New Faces, with ‘1905’. Check out the forerunner for Lorde and Kimbra performing that song,...

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Sing Special - 12 November 1975

Television, 1975 (Full Length)

This end of season Sing special from 1975 takes place mostly in the Wild West. After some song and dance numbers and comedy, we meet two small-time crooks: Lone Wolf (Ray Woolf) and Crazy D (Laurie Dee). A musical showdown at the saloon ensues — featuring a Tom Jones medley — before a bungled bank robbery brings down the burglars. The performers include Craig Scott, Chic Littlewood, Angela Ayers and George Tumahai (who shows Woolf how to hongi). The show also contains a rare clip from A Going Concern, an early NZ soap of which no known episodes survive.

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Series

Sing

Television, 1974–1975

Sing featured Kiwi entertainers performing popular songs and musical standards, accompanied by a bevy of dancers. The performers included Craig Scott, Ray Woolf, Angela Ayers, Chic Littlewood and musical comic relief Laurie Dee. The hair was big and the collars large, while songs tended towards the middle of the road — for example 'Love is All Around', Tom Jones and Glen Campbell.

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Singing in My Soul

Fly My Pretties, Music Video, 2004

This black and white performance music video is taken from  debut album Live at Bats (2004), back when the plan was for the Fly My Pretties ensemble to be a one-off project. Written and sung by Age Pryor — with vocal help from Tessa Rain — the gentle folk song is enhanced by simple but effective shooting, and attentive use of split-screen editing. The track was recorded in Wellington's Bats Theatre.

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Freedom to Sing

Tiki Taane, Music Video, 2011

In April 2011, singer Tiki Taane was handcuffed, arrested and spent a night in the cells after performing a number by American rappers NWA as police visited his performance at Tauranga’s Illuminati club. The charges were later dropped and Taane remained resolutely unapologetic. This defiant song, recorded a month later at the same venue, is his musical response to the ordeal. Armed only with an acoustic guitar — the protest singer’s weapon of choice — he asserts his refusal to be silenced while firing a broadside at police, the media and politicians.

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Palm Singing

Bressa Creeting Cake, Music Video, 1997

Bressa Creeting Cake's jaunty calypso romp, described by the band as "a very happy holiday song full of gaiety, summer, and love for one's fellows", gets a suitably madcap treatment in this video directed by Michael Keating and band member Edmund McWilliams (aka Ed Cake). Actor and comedian Jonathan Brugh (What We Do in the Shadows) gets to mug for the camera while the band lurks in the background in their "sinister suits". Auckland's Little Shoal Bay, near the Harbour Bridge, is the opening location, and elsewhere, a guitar is used as a percussion instrument.

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Spotlight

Chic Littlewood

Curated by the NZ On Screen team . 5 Items

This Spotlight collection celebrates the screen work of versatile entertainer Chic Littlewood. Born Cecil Littlewood in London, he first overcame his shyness doing Elvis impressions at an English holiday camp. After moving to NZ in 1964 he was soon singing and doing comedy on local TV. In 1975 Li...

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Collection

A Tribute to Kevin Smith

Curated by NZ On Screen team

Kevin Smith was an actor who could do it all; from brooding like Brando in a Tennessee Williams play, through the swords and sandals of Xena, to the gentle, romantic lead of Double Booking, and self-parody in Love Mussel. The pieces collected here represent snippets of a career cruelly cut short (he died in a film-set accident in 2002). Writer James Griffin pays tribute. 

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Collection

Top 10 NZ Party Songs

Curated by NZ On Screen team

The holiday season: time to let your hair down, have a swim, give in to your appetite...and have a boogie. From '10 Guitars' to 'Trippin', let NZ On Screen supply the music, with this Top 10 countdown of classic Kiwi party songs. In the backgrounder, NZ On Screen Content Director Irene Gardiner talks 10 legendary tracks  plus some runners-up.