Aotearoa Reggae Allstars

Our top reggae artists have joined forces to fight child abuse

Aotearoa Reggae All Stars, a collaboration of some of New Zealand's best reggae artists, have remade Herbs’ classic waiata Sensitive to a Smile to help fight child abuse, with all proceeds from the sale of the single going to Mana Ririki!

Aotearoa Reggae All Stars will be showcased on Maori Television this Friday, June 21 at 9.30pm – the same day that the Sensitive to a Smile remake is released on iTunes. So tune into the show, join the Aotearoa Reggae Allstars facebook page and more importantly encourage all your friends and whanau to download the song on iTunes. The Sensitive to a Smile remake will be available in Australia too, so if you've got whanau there, let them know too.

The stellar line-up of stars who have contributed their musical talent and support include Sons of Zion, Tomorrow People, Three Houses Down, House of Shem, Ria Hall, Majic Paora, Che Fu, Katchafire, 1814, Chad Chambers, NRG Rising and Tasty Brown. And our very own Mana Ririki ambassadors Awen and Natasha Guttenbeil also feature in the Maori Television showcase.

Mana Ririki executive director Anton Blank says the charity is thrilled to see the community taking action to prevent child abuse. “It is our vision that within two generations Maori child abuse will be eliminated so that Maori children can enjoy a family life that is free from violence.

“We want to reach young Maori parents with our violence-free messages,” he says. “Aotearoa Reggae All Stars will take us into a new sphere of communications – popular music. And they will touch many Maori whanau with a message of hope.”

aras-creatorRaising Awareness

The project is the brainchild of Rio Panapa (Sons of Zion) and Avina Kelekolio (Tomorrow People), who wanted to highlight the issues around child abuse and bring their fellow reggae artists together to raise awareness.

Rio says the response has been amazing: “Everyone we approached has wanted to get on board and support the kaupapa.

“Times have changed where things that used to be tapu to talk about are gaining more awareness in society, and that is what we hope to achieve with this record to raise awareness about violence towards children.”

Avina says he hopes the project will get through to all New Zealanders.  “A lot of child abuse affects our people, Maori and Pasifika - and they are the biggest reggae fans so we thought we could try to make a positive change through our music.”