Following on from her recently released RnB-pop-soul debut EP ME & ME TOO, ‘Ko Wai Ahau’ is another example of what an incredible talent Tia is. With an RnB-inspired track as the rhythmic foundation, Tia’s warm vocals and the kupu gifted by Matiu Tahi (Tūhoe) are what truly make this waiata soar and fill one's wairua. It speaks of an appreciation for moko kauae, how it is a taonga and its connection to whakapapa. The waiata is also a reflection of the Te-Whanganui-a-Tara-based, Hawkes Bay-raised artist.
“I am still trying to figure out who I am as a young Māori wahine. This is also my first Reo Māori waiata, and it has been incredibly humbling to be able to go through this experience,” says Tia.
“I was fortunate enough to have the poem gifted to me by Matiu. It means so much to me. He’s an amazing poet who wants the Māori language and knowledge shared through art. I started my Reo language journey in the past few years, which has helped me significantly when it came to writing this piece and understanding the true meanings behind it.”
The singer/songwriter grew up in a musical family, singing and performing her whole life. When not writing and releasing music, she’s rehearsing and performing with her band and recently completed studying music at Wellington’s Massey University. Tia Ward is undoubtedly a talent to watch!