2013 VNZMA Winners

With four Tuis, Lorde rules the stage at NZ’s biggest night in music; Aaradhna and Shapeshifter also win multiple awards.

She has ruled the charts on the international scene and now teen singing sensation Lorde has been acknowledged big time at home collecting four Tuis at the 2013 Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards.

Hot on her heels is R&B vocalist Aaradhna who adds three Tuis to her impressive gallery of music accolades – including the coveted Mentos Album of the Year award. And following close behind the two leading ladies is Christchurch-formed drum ‘n’ bass outfit Shapeshifter which picks up two Tuis.

The winners have been announced tonight (Nov. 21) at the star-studded 2013 Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards at Auckland’s Vector Arena.

Ella Yelich-O’Connor’s (Lorde) mega-successful debut EP ‘The Love Club’ sees her pick up Tuis for Vodafone Single of the Year for ‘Royals’, Westpac Hotpoints Breakthrough Artist of the Year and 2013 Xbox One International Achievement Award.

And to cap off a huge night for the Auckland 17 year-old, she also takes home the Vodafone People’s Choice Award.

No stranger to the limelight, Lorde has enjoyed great success here and abroad – most notably retaining the top spot on the US Billboard Hot 100 for eight weeks. She’s also graced the stages of top US talk shows, performing live on the Ellen Degeneres Show, Later with Jools Holland and most recently The Late Show with David Letterman.

Even after 20,000 free downloads, ‘Royals’ has been certified double Platinum and took out the 2013 APRA Silver Scroll for the year’s best song.

Wellington-born Aaradhna takes home Tuis for Mentos Album of the Year for ‘Treble and Reverb’, Spotify Best Female Solo Artist and Best Urban / Hip Hop Album.

2013 has been an especially momentous year for 29-year-old Aaradhna. She has a record-breaking six awards from the 2013 Pacific Music Awards - including the Pasefika Proud Best Pacific Music Album Tui for ‘Treble and Reverb’ - and she was a finalist for the prestigious APRA Silver Scroll and Taite Music Prizes.

Shapeshifter’s fifth album ‘Delta’ gains the group awards for Steinlager Pure Best Group and George FM Best Electronica Album. The band was also a finalist for Mentos Album of the Year and Vodafone Single of the Year.

Jamie McDell’s album ‘Six Strings and a Sailboat’ gains the coveted The Edge Best Pop Album Tui while Best Rock Album goes to Villainy for debut album ‘Mode. Set. Clear’. 

McDell’s album has produced four hit singles and has been certified Gold after debuting at #2 on the NZ Album charts and remaining in the top 10 for six months. Four piece alternative rock band Villainy’s ‘Mode. Set. Clear’ debuted at #8 on the New Zealand album chart and reached #1.

Fat Freddy’s Drop makes a return to the Vodafone NZ Music Awards, claiming Best Roots Album for 2013 with the seven-piece’s third full-length album ‘Blackbird’ - all self-released independently through label The Drop. It’s the band’s eighth Tui. 

Spotify Best Male Solo Artist for 2013 goes to Lawrence Arabia – pseudonym for Christchurch-born James Milne – for his third album ‘The Sparrow’. The recording was also a finalist for the Taite Music Prize.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s ‘II’ takes the Tui for Best Alternative Album. Unknown Mortal Orchestra – the alter ego of Oregon-based Ruban Nielson previously of The Mint Chicks – won Best Male Solo Artist at the music awards in 2012.

This year Shapeshifter, Aaradhna and Lorde were joined by the evening’s co-host Stan Walker and boy-band Titanium in contesting the Peoples’ Choice Award with Lorde taking out the honours.

The FOUR Highest Selling Album Tui for 2013 goes to ‘White Rabbit: The Very Best of Peter Posa’ released in 2012 and immediately entering the album charts at #1. Posa, now in his 70s and enjoying something of a revival, was awarded the NZ Order of Merit in 2008 for services to entertainment.

Recorded Music New Zealand Chief Executive, Damian Vaughan says the calibre of the 2013 Tui winners demonstrates the strength of New Zealand music across a wide range of genres.

“When you look at all the categories it’s plain to see that the music has never been stronger and the means for accessing it more diverse. Congratulations to all the winners - to the other finalists, well done on achieving so much in what has been a stellar year for all involved.”

Other winners on the night include Stan Walker who takes out the NZ On Air Radio Airplay Tui for ‘Take It Easy’ and Flight Of The Conchords who claim the Vodafone Highest Selling Single award for ‘Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That)’.

Joel Kefali also gets a Tui for NZ On Air Best Music Video for his work on Lorde’s ‘Royals while the NUMA Trust Best Maori Album goes to Maisey Rika for ‘Whitiora’. The Tui for Best Gospel / Christian Album now sits on Strahan’s mantelpiece for ‘Posters’.

Best Classical Album Tui goes Michael Houstoun for his ‘Lilburn’, a so-called ‘sampler’ of music from all periods of the noted New Zealand composer’s life.

The Recorded Music NZ Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards finals night featured live performances by Aaradhna, Lorde, Jamie McDell, Titanium, Iva Lamkum and awards co-host Stan Walker. There was also a special tribute performance to NZ Herald Legacy Award recipient Shona Laing by Ruby Frost. The Award also sees Shona inducted in to the NZ Music Hall of Fame.

Tui recipients who have received their awards during the year are:

New Zealand Herald Legacy Award

Shona Laing

Best Jazz Album

Nathan Haines ‘The Poet’s Embrace’

Best Folk Album

Great North ‘Halves’

Pasefika Proud Best Pacific Music Album

Aaradhna ‘Treble and Reverb’

Best Country Music Album

Delaney and Marlon ‘Sad but True – The Secret History of Country Music Songwriting Vol. 1’

Best Album Cover

Gina Kiel & Harry A'Court – ‘Blackbird’ (Fat Freddy’s Drop)

Best Engineer

Brett Stanton/Lee Prebble/The Phoenix Foundation – ‘Fandango’ (The Phoenix Foundation)

Best Producer

The Phoenix Foundation/Lee Prebble/Brett Stanton – ‘Fandango’ (The Phoenix Foundation)

Best Children’s Music Album

fleaBITE – ‘Circus of Fleas’

Hallenstein Brothers 2013 Critics’ Choice Prize

Sheep, Dog & Wolf

2012 Critics’ Choice Prize winner announced


Watercolours has been named as the 2012 winner of the Critics" Choice Prize, part of the 2012 Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards.

Finalists Loui the ZU, Watercolours and Beach Pigs each performed a live set at the King"s Arms in Auckland last night (Wed. Oct. 17) in front of a packed crowd and a panel of 13 music critics. The critics were tasked with selecting just one recipient; someone they believe has the potential to win a Tui in the future.

Following an impressive set, Watercolours - the stage name of Auckland"s Chelsea Jade Metcalf - took home the prize. Watercolours says: "I am completely blindsided by this win as all of the performers brought their A game tonight. It is encouraging to see the support there is for my music."

The Critics" Choice Prize, now in its third year, is designed to recognise and promote up-and-coming Kiwi music talent and potential future music awards winners. In 2011 the line-up included Kimbra, while in 2010 it included Home Brew – both are now finalists for this year"s Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards on November 1. The 2010 line-up included The Naked and Famous who have gone on to achieve great local and international success.

"The panel has shown remarkable skill in picking future Tui winners in the past and I have no doubt they"ve got it right again this year – all three finalists looked and sounded fantastic and have great potential for the future," says RIANZ managing director Chris Caddick.

In addition to recognition from top music industry experts, Watercolours gets money and professional guidance and advice to help her "make it" in the competitive New Zealand music market.

Musician Notes


Watercolours is the musical moniker of singer-songwriter, photographer, writer and artist Chelsea Jade Metcalf. Her unique sound, which some describe as "dream-pop", has already garnered her a legion of followers. Chelsea has her finger in many musical pies – she"s a member of folksy band Teacups and also recently lent her vocals to James Duncan"s new album.

Loui the Zu

Mzwethu Ngubane, otherwise known as Loui the ZU, may be young but he"s already making a big splash on the Auckland music scene. Earlier this year he gave Kiwis a taste of his unique style with the release of "LBSB: The Fruits Of My Labour' featuring "You Don"t Have To Lie". Loui the ZU also released his first commercial single on 1 October. The 18 year old MC, producer and songwriter was born in Zimbabwe and raised in Auckland.

Beach Pigs

Auckland four-piece Beach Pigs initially self-released a debut EP of catchy short and sweet pop songs before Arch Hill Records took a shine to the band and remixed and remastered the tracks. Beach Pigs recently embarked on a nationwide tour with Rackets resulting in EP tracks "Work" and "Cigarette" receiving strong alternative radio airplay.

Beach Pigs has also been announced as part of the 2013 Laneway festival lineup.

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