Tuwharetoa FM has released a te reo Māori song to coincide with Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori. The Turangi based iwi radio station has translated the popular Hi Marks song Till into te reo Māori, giving it the name 'Kia'.
Staff members released the song on the breakfast show this morning alongside announcer Aaron Moeke.
The voices of several staff members at Tūwharetoa FM feature in the song.
Announcers received a helping hand from Moeke who hosts Rā Te Haeata. With over 20 years experience in the music world, Moeke helped his fellow colleagues produce their very first song in te reo.
This was a completely new experience for announcers Reti Hepi, Te Koimutuhanga, Edwin Wikatene and Karam Fletcher.
'Till' is derived from the French song ‘Prière Sans Espoir’ released in 1956 by Lucien Lupi. Since then, ‘Till’ has been translated into multiple languages and was released over 15 times across different countries.
Soon after it became the popular Kiwi anthem by the Hi Marks in the 1970s.
Tuwharetoa FM Manager Karam Fletcher believes it's important that Tūwharetoa FM supports Māori language week.
“We are conscious of our contribution to Te Reo Māori in our community and Iwi, and because Māori language week is every week for us, we thought the release of a Māori waiata will be something a little different and fun that we could do together,” he says.
Fletcher adds that if ‘Kia’ is a success, releasing a Māori song may become an annual event for the station.
He says, “This is a great kick-start to the week for us, on Wednesday we have Rob Ruha performing in the Turangi town centre for our ‘Ākina te Reo’ live concert so it should be a great week.”
The broadcast was captured via a live Facebook feed this morning. You can view it here.