a chat with: NGANEKO

Tāmaki Makaurau
-born singer/songwriter Nganeko first started gaining attention with her Soundcloud releases and DIY-style videos posted on Instagram. She then turned heads when she featured on rising NZ hip-hop duo Church & AP’s tracks War Outside and Hello Hello. She also featured on First Take Strut from the new Troy Kingi album. Releasing two incredible singles within the last year we wanted to have a chat with her about how it all started, her new single Facade, and her favourite THATS A FKN WRAP moment. 

Kia Ora Nganeko, how’s it going? 

Kia Ora my bro, I’m all good thank you. Living my best life honestly, hope all is well with you yo!

Firstly, can you tell us a bit about yourself and when your musical path start?

I’m a Māori, NZ European, Fijian, 19yr old singer songwriter from Tāmaki Makaurau. My musical path started from when my parents and some of their friends jammed downstairs of my childhood home. They eventually released albums under The Kingites & Royala (Separate Artist Names) they probably stopped making music for a living when I was like 8 or something, I can’t remember but yeah music was always playing at our house. I don't know one brown family that didn’t play music all day every day though. But yes always been singing, there was never a day out of the week where our house wasn’t the unnecessarily loud as house on our street at my childhood home. Then in high school I posted like videos of me singing covers in my room and those got some love too. ngl been a pretty easy and bliss start to my journey, thanks to my Aunty Nilla who managed me 2 years ago and my current managers NicNakMedia & my parents!! Very thankful/grateful.

What an awesome upbringing and glad you're enjoying your music journey so far! Congrats on your new track Facade! Where did you get the idea for the song?

Thank you so much! I didn’t even know what the word meant till I saw a Genius lyric video on Youtube of Kali Uchis & she says it after the interviewer asks her how I like the word and how it sounds but basically I just liked the word and I was going through a identity crisis hahaha.

Video directed by Jeremy Cole

You’ve collaborated with the likes of Troy Kingi and Church & AP. What was it like creating songs with them?

Low-key nerve wracking at the start but they always made sure I was comfortable, so very easy. I do sometimes wonder what they think its like working with me though 🤣

Where do you find inspiration to create? 

Life & Music 🤝

Did you always want to be a musician?

Nah, I didn’t use to wanna be a musician because the dark side of the industry scared me & I thought it wasn’t humble to perform or something haha.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?

I want to have released a big album, collaborated with artists I adore, making a living off it and loving life.

We are so keen to see where you go with your music! Lastly, what’s your favourite “THATS A FKN WRAP” moment?

Probably when I got off stage after my last set in the Avondale Cinemas for the Troy Kingi & The Clutch Tour last year ay. I was sick during the tour but everyone I love was there when I got off stage. The most bliss feeling knowing & seeing that, straight up.

Photo by @colacowboy / Jeremy Cole 

Thanks for taking the time to chat today! Is there anything you can tell us about anything coming up? 

Not too sure yet aye, hopefully a couple singles before a big project. Pretty dependant on covid right now so hopefully shit goes back to somewhat normal so we get back to this work.




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