Skip to main content


Sounds Aotearoa is New Zealand’s largest music industry expo-conference and was held over two days on 14th and 15th March in New Plymouth. Now in its third year, the event holds conferences in the day and features lectures from some of the world’s top festival bookers and agents. At night there are showcases which are designed to expose New Zealand artists to the global market. This year there were exceptional performances by Wellington trio The Nudge and funk-soul powerhouse Iva Lamkum.

Adam Page jamming with guest artists

There is a huge amount of musical talent in Raglan for whom this event would be of great benefit. Some showcase artists have gone on to perform at some of the biggest festivals in the world including WOMAD, Glastonbury and The Big Chill in the UK. You don’t need to have an agent to apply either, just visit and you will find details of how to apply.

It is extremely difficult to make a living from being a musician in New Zealand with most musicians having to work other jobs to supplement their income. However, there is funding available from Creative New Zealand (CNZ) and NZ on Air for music projects.

CNZ is the national arts development agency and offers financial support through grants and investment programmes, they also help individual artists to develop audiences for their work. NZ on Air’s music funding schemes are designed to get more NZ music heard on radio, TV and online. Making Tracks is a new music funding scheme which provides funding for recording and making music videos. See for more details.

Raglanites Emily Johnson and Dougal Greer enjoying The Black Seeds

The event precedes with WOMAD, a 3-day world music and dance festival held in the beautiful surroundings of Brooklands Park, New Plymouth. This year’s impressive line-up included Alabama 3, Baaba Maal, Groundation, Gurrumul, Master Drummers of Burundi and many more tasteful acts from around the globe. Every year a convoy of raglan locals travels to the annual festival and set up Camp Raglan.

One of the reasons why WOMAD is so popular with Raglanites is because of the festival’s location and atmosphere. The atmosphere is incredible and seeing familiar Raglan faces in the crowd creates a sense of community. Highlights of the WOMAD festival were Adam Page, a multi-instrumentalist from Adelaide who makes spontaneous symphonies using loop pedals and Tori-Ensemble, a quartet from Korea who play hypnotic and haunting traditional music.

Lucy Cioffi, Music reporter

Adam Page jamming with guest artists

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.