Iconic Māori waiata to be honoured at Taite Music awards

By Te Ao - Māori News

No waiata may be better known in the pop music arena than Patea Māori Club’s 1983 hit, Poi e.

In recognition of its achievements, Independent Music New Zealand is set to honour the track as the classic record of the year, at the 2021 Taite Music Awards in Auckland on Tuesday.

Janine Maruera from Patea Māori Club, says the group's members were surprised and excited when they heard the news.

“You know we share Poi e with our Patea community and pretty much the rest of South Taranaki too,” she says.

On debut, the song spent four weeks at No 1 and 22 weeks in the charts, then unprecedented for a song in te Reo Māori.

“Oh it was a huge influence for our language," she says.

"I see groups now like Maimoa and other mainstream musicians doing Reo Māori songs, like Maisy Rika and Rob Ruha, and I like to think that Dalvanius Prime and his vision played a part in that."

Since its release over 30 years ago, the hit song has had six and a half million plays on Spotify alone.