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Watch Tami Neilson's Video For 'Kingmaker'

Watch Tami Neilson's Video For 'Kingmaker'

Chris Cudby / Monday 18th July, 2022 11:03AM

Released amongst last Friday's flurry of significant local releases, Tami Neilson unveiled her new album KINGMAKER alongside a video for the record's absolutely gigantic title track. Directed by Alyx Duncan and made with support from NZ On Air, the song's striking visuals depict the golden-gowned artist roaming through the rubble of Tāmaki Makaurau's once-resplendent St. James Theatre — joined by Kingmaker Choir members Anna Coddington, Julia Deans, Bella Kalolo and Zoe Moon. Sporting more than a touch of Morricone-esque dramatic flair, the cinematic ballad indeed sets a majestic scene for the Canadian-born, Aotearoa-based songwriter's new record, which famously includes a duet with US country icon Willie Nelson — watch and listen below...

“It felt so fitting to work with an incredible team of women on this video for a song of empowerment, led by Director Alyx Duncan and Producer Emma Mortimer. Alyx really poured her heart and soul into making KINGMAKER come to life with her incredible attention to detail and she suggested approaching the owner of the historic St James Theatre located in the heart of downtown Auckland. The once-grand theatre that had hosted Queen Elizabeth herself in 1963 is now crumbling and dilapidated, shuttered for years as work to renovate it came to a standstill. This created the perfect symbolism for KINGMAKER- a group of women, alive and powerful, rising from the ashes of the old colonial institutions that once excluded and oppressed them.

Art director and stylist Evie Kemp created the throne room and my crown, like a renaissance painting come to life. I wanted the visuals to reflect the cinematic feel of the song, which includes a choir of some of my dearest friends, Julia Deans, Anna Coddington, Bella Kalolo and Zoe Moon - all incredible New Zealand artists in their own right. I asked each of them to dress in what they viewed as regal and what made them feel powerful. (Bella wears Samoan traditional dress, Zoe wears cowrie shells - the ancient pan African symbolism of wealth and fertility, Anna wears a Maori necklace carving and a feather shrug that nods to the traditional Maori kākahu by indigenous designer Kiri Nathan) Having these women who support and surround me both in music and in friendship serves as a reminder that when we are united, we are so much stronger.“ — Tami Neilson

'KINGMAKER' is out now on CD, LP (Southbound Distribution) and all digital platforms.


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