“Musician Who Revitalized Maori Culture”

Dalvanius Prime, pioneer of Polynesian soul and hip-hop, has died aged 54. Prime developed his own take on American soul by merging its ballad form with traditional Maori vocal harmonies. In the early 70s he founded Maui Records – a “Maori Motown” whose biggest hit was 1984’s iconic “Poi-E” with the Patea Maori Club. Prime used his passion for music as a political and social platform, setting up work programs and music industry training for troubled Maori youths. Donna Awatere Huata: “Dalvanius was the first person to make Maori performing arts accessible to every New Zealander, and for that we all owe him a great debt. He crossed a boundary that had never before been traversed.”

Dalvanius Prime: 1948 – October 4 2002

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