June 24th 2015
To kick off the Mentorships for the month, Wellington’s neo-soul diva Iva Lamkum mentored at Rongotai College, followed by singer-songwriter Katie Thompson at Linwood College in Christchurch.

Linwood College’s Kate Coghlan commented “Katie has been a wonderful mentor, I know the students have appreciated her being here and I am hugely grateful for the inspiration she has provided them with. Katie has been extremely helpful and has talent for helping others with their songwriting.” 

Producer, composer and teaching artist Matthew Salapu/Anonymouz inspired bands to enter Smokefree Pacific Beats at Avondale and Edgewater College in Auckland. Multi-instrumentalist Kim Halliday showed off her techniques with instruments at Baradene and Tuakau College. 

Jed Parsons showed the boys from Christchurch’s Shirley Boys’ High School how to rock it out before their qualifying heats for Smokefreerockquest. Shirley Boys’ High School music teacher Brad Banks had this to say about Jed: “Jed was excellent. Highly motivated, driven and related well with the students. He quickly ascertained the strengths and weaknesses of the boys and focused on what they needed to pull the individual skills of the group together. There was very little down time and Jed managed to develop 2 songs with each of the groups he worked with to completion. We would recommend Jed to anyone.” Considering Brad's career as guitarist in well known band The Dukes, his praise means a lot. 

We also had the opportunity to introduce new mentors to our programme: Lavina Williams, sister to J.Williams (super talented family) and vocal coach for the second season of X Factor NZ joined our mentoring family this year for her first mentorship at Mt Roskill Grammar School. 

The lovely French for Rabbits' Brooke Singer worked with students at Logan Park High School in Dunedin. Brooke said "It was great to work with the year 12's who were all great musicians and songwriters. The year 9's were mostly quite new to songwriting, and most of them had a near finished song at the end of the mentorship, so that was great!"

After 10 mentorships, we finished June off with Trinity Roots' Rio Hemopo at Rotorua Boys High School.

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