After powerfully moving on from the label of Salmonella Dub frontman, Tiki Taane has spent the last nine years carving out his not-so-small piece of the music scene.
Starting strong with record-breaking single 'Always On My Mind', and showing no sign of letting up, Taane has just released his latest track 'No Place Like Home', accompanied by an epic video exhibiting some of the most beautiful parts of he place he calls home, New Zealand. “I'm in the studio at the moment because I'm producing three albums for three different artists and also doing vocals for a drum & bass crew from Europe,” Tiki says.
“I'm looking forward to coming over [to Australia]. I've been touring since about 97/ 98 with my first band Salmonella Dub and we did a lot of touring in Australia, which has always been really good for me and as a solo artist it's been fantastic.
“I think last year I came over four times. This year we've managed to pull together a 14-date tour, so I'm really stoked. I love touring Australia, it's good fun.”
The single is out, but what about progress on the album? “I have been [working on it] for the last three or four years. It's kind of still at the bottom of the list of things to do at the moment because I'm producing as well. But I am aiming to release it next year and give it away for free.
“It's pretty political. I sing about some real gnarly shit that's going on in the world. I'm not writing songs to be played on the radio, so I can get really political about some of the social issues and not have that fear of it not selling well because I'm giving it away for free. It's been quite an awesome experience actually.”
The new video features some seemingly impossible aerial shots. “It took a while [to shoot],” Tiki says. “It [involved] calling in favours from friends and stuff like that. And having a really long timeline; that song was a year and a half in the making. It gave me plenty of time to work out what kind of shots I wanted and collect the shots. And nowadays the drones you can get are incredible, so you don't have to use helicopters.”
Tiki has also been busy working with non-for-profit charity, Good Neighbour. “They're a local charity who do really cool stuff: they help people, clothe people, feed people, who are really in need. They were the first charity that I really wanted to help through the songs, so all proceeds go to this charity. It's been a really awesome experience for me to get involved with them and this is the fourth song I've done where I've given all the proceeds to a charity.
“I'm not really making money these days from sales like digital downloads. For a solo artist like me, who doesn't have the big, major label push, I could kind of go, 'you know what, I'm going to give my music away for free, or, give it to a charity'. As long as people buy my merch and come to the gigs and pay for drinks and see me live then I'm happy and I can still survive.
"The world is at our fingertips now with the internet, we can have access to really good producers and get our music out there a little more.”
Fri 14 Oct - Oxford Art Factory (Sydney)
Sat 15 Oct - Republic Bar & Café (Hobart)
Sun 16 Oct - Evelyn Hotel (Melbourne)
Thu 20 Oct - Mojo’s Bar (Fremantle)
Fri 21 Oct - Babushka Bar (Perth)
Sat 22 Oct - Settlers Tavern (Margaret River)
Sun 23 Oct - Indi Bar (Perth)Thu 27 Oct - Solbar (Sunshine Coast)
Fri 28 Oct - The Zoo (Brisbane)
Sat 29 Oct - Island Vibe Festival (Brisbane)
Sun 30 Oct - Miami Marketta (Gold Coast)
Thu 3 Nov - The Jack (Cairns)
Fri 4 Nov - Kirwan Tavern (Townsville)
Sat 5 Nov - Airlie Beach Music Festival