Māori MC Tīpene is taking the Māori culture to the world through his music. He found NZ music chart success with his hit 'West Side Hori' and is about to drop his debut bilingual album, 'Tautoko'.
It's been a labour of love, an album that draws inspiration from his children and speaks about many of his own home truths.
Raised in Flaxmere, he's walked away from his meatworks job of 15 years and is producing music full time. It's a journey he credits to the women in his life, especially his mother after she passed away.
The release of his single West Side Hori in 2012 is what got Tīpene noticed on the music scene, landing him a deal with Empire Records.
Tautoko will feature 16 songs and new collaborations with Che Fu, Chong Nee and Dam Native.
But for now, it's going to be many long days and nights perfecting the final touches of his album.