28 June 2023
Announcing the 2023 Pacific Music Awards finalists
The 2023 Pacific Music Awards will take place Wednesday 9th August
The finalists for the 2023 Pacific Music Awards were announced last night at an event hosted at the recording studio, live music venue and community space Big Fan in Morningside, Auckland.
Across 13 awards categories, this year’s 24 finalists encompass a wide range of new artists and established musicians. At the 2023 Pacific Music Awards, there are 10 first time finalists, alongside 13 previous award winners.
This year’s lead finalists including MELODOWNZ, Olivia Foa’i and Sam V who are each nominated for four award categiries at this year’s awards.
Hip hop talent MELODOWNZ is nominated for NZ Music Commission Best Pacific Male Artist, Matai Watches Best Pacific Hip Hop Artist and Recorded Music Te Pukaemi Toa o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa | Best Pacific Music Album for his album Lone Wolf. He’s also nominated for NZ On Air Best Pacific Music Video for ‘Pray For Me feat. Lisi, Mikey Dam’, directed by Connor Pritchard.
Dancer, director and musician Olivia Foa’i is nominated for Auckland Council Best Pacific Female Artist, SunPix Best Pacific Language and APRA Best Pacific Song for her song ‘Sunlight’, as well as NZ On Air Best Pacific Music Video alongside director Shae Sterling.
Contemporary RnB artist Sam V is also nominated for four categories at this year’s awards, including NZ Music Commission Best Pacific Male Artist, Best Pacific Soul/RnB Artist for The one, the lonely EP, and APRA Best Pacific Song for ‘Come Through’. He’s also nominated for MPG/SAE Best Producer for his tracks ‘Come Through’, ‘Sex & Pain’, ‘Love Again’ and ’ I Tried To Tell U’ alongside producer Edward Liu.
Kiwi Pacific soul singer Lou’ana is nominated for three categories at the 2023 Pacific Music Awards, including Auckland Council Best Pacific Female Artist, Best Pacific Soul/RnB Artist and NZ On Air Best Pacific Music Video for ‘Lost & Found’ alongside director Anna Rose Duckworth.
Polynesian singer-songwriter Victor J Sefo is nominated for three categories as well, including NZ Music Commission Best Pacific Male Artist, APRA Best Pacific Song and MPG/SAE Best Producer for the self-produced tracks ‘685’ and ‘685 Remix’.
There’s plenty of emerging talent on display at this year’s 2023 Pacific Music Awards, with 10 first time nominnees including Deceptikonz (APRA Best Pacific Song, Flava Best Pacific Group, Matai Watches Best Pacific Hip Hop Artist), Wayno (531pi Best Gospel Artist, SunPix Best Pacific Language), Blsd One (531pi Best Gospel Artist), Canaan Ene x Junior Soqeta (SunPix Best Pacific Language), Canaan Ene x Swiss (Best Pacific Roots/Reggae Artist), FAIVA (Niu FM Best International Pacific Artist), Hales (NZ On Air Best Pacific Music Video with director Canaan Ene), Jordyn with a Why (Auckland Council Best Pacific Female Artist), Mareko x Ricky Paul (MPG/SAE Best Producer), Sweet & Irie (Best Pacific Roots/Reggae Artist), and their first nomination as a duo Rei & Olivia Foa'I (SunPix Best Pacific Language).
Other finalists include:
Pacific Music Awards Trust spokesperson Rev. Mua Strickson-Pua said: “Pacific Music Awards has the unique distinction of being the only Music Awards for over a decade hosting a Finalist Night where all the Finalist are Winners. The Fa'ave Tikanga principle was to honour the parents, families, communities and nations. Our Pasifika artists bring their families and share this historic musical moment but it is also now their family, community, and nation's history.
“Pacific Music Awards also wish to express heartfelt Aroha Alofa Aloha to our Pacific music communities, networks and industry for the incredible Tautua serving our families, communities and nations during COVID. Being there for our people through their zooms, podcast, internet concerts taking our people through COVID with Musika music of Hope, Love and Resilience for the mental health and well being of our people, the Pacific Music Awards will not forget."
Alongside the 13 award categories, there will be eight additional awards presented on the night including the Phillip Fuemana Most Promising Pacific Artist, NZ On Air Radio Airplay Award, NZ On Air Streaming Award, SunPix People’s Choice Award – Best Pacific Artist, Creative New Zealand Award, Arch Angel Independent Artist Award, Ministry for Pacific Peoples Special Recognition Award, and Manukau Institute of Technology Te Pukenga Lifetime Achievement Award.
The winner of the Recorded Music Te Pukaemi Toa o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa | Best Pacific Music Album category is presented with an official Tūī and recognised at the next Aotearoa Music Awards. The APRA Best Pacific Song Award recipient will also be recognised at the APRA Silver Scroll Awards.
Once again, the SunPix People’s Choice Award is open to the public, with all artists nominated for the 2023 Pacific Music Awards eligible. The winner is solely determined by public vote, with voting only available through the voting poll here on the PMA website. Voting for the People’s Choice Award is now open and will close Wednesday 26 July (11:59pm).
Furthermore, Matai Watches has officially joined the 2023 Pacific Music Awards as sponsor of the Best Pacific Hip Hop Artist Award. With Pacific heritage at the centre and foundation of the company, the winner of this award will receive a special watch from the Matai collection.
To listen to all of the nominees, here’s the official 2023 Pacific Music Awards Spotify playlist.
This year’s Pacific Music Award winners will be celebrated at an event on Wednesday 9th August at the Due Drop Events Centre (formaly named the Vodafone Events Centre) in Manukau. Tickets for the 2023 Pacific Music Awards will go on sale in early July through Eventfinda.
2023 Pacific Music Awards finalists:
Auckland Council Best Pacific Female Artist:
NZ Music Commission Best Pacific Male Artist:
Flava Best Pacific Group:
NZ On Air Best Pacific Music Video:
APRA Best Pacific Song:
SunPix Best Pacific Language:
Matai Watches Best Pacific Hip Hop Artist:
Best Pacific Soul/RnB Artist:
Best Pacific Roots/Reggae Artist:
531pi Best Pacific Gospel Artist:
Niu FM Best International Pacific Artist:
MPG/SAE Best Producer
Recorded Music Te Pukaemi Toa o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa | Best Pacific Music Album
All the artist finalists:
For more information: www.pacificmusicawards.org.nz
Issued for the Pacific Music Awards by Pead
About the Pacific Music Awards:
In 2004 the Pacific Music Awards Committee (PMAC) was formed to realise a vision and the inaugural Pacific Music Awards debuted at Pasifika Festival in March 2005. Encouraged by the success of the awards the PMAC set about developing an annual event as a significant highlight of the New Zealand music industry calendar. The awards committee formed a Charitable Trust to organise and host the awards, and are driven by a simple core objective: to create and manage an event that acknowledges the success of Pacific artists, celebrates and promotes excellence in Pacific music and encourages young Pacific musicians to aspire to a higher level of achievement.
Adam Warin, Pead | 021 029 01388 | firstname.lastname@example.org
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