Lorde releases mini album in Maori language – Music News
Lorde has reissued part of his new album, Solar Power, in New Zealand’s native language.
The EP, titled Te Ao Marama (translated as World of Light), features five songs sung in Te reo Maori, the language of the indigenous people of New Zealand. The 24-year-old released the surprise tracks during Te Wiki o Te Reo, a week that celebrates the Maori language, and intends to donate all proceeds from the outing to Maori charities.
Although not fluent, Lorde realized while making the nature-themed album that much of it was inspired by her home country and came up with the idea to release songs in te reo maori. Determined to follow through on the idea, she told The Spinoff that she hired three Maori translators, who reworked some of the lyrics so that they made better sense in the language.
“I took each song line by line and really went into it,” she explained in the interview. “So Hana (Mereraiha) had a good grasp of where I was at and was then able to bring the translations to a more metaphorical place, or just summon a figure that she felt was relevant.” She also described meeting Sir Timoti Karetu, the 84-year-old former head of the Maori Language Commission, who is highly regarded for his work in preserving the language.
The singer, who is not Maori, admitted that some might disagree with her decision to record in the language. However, she explained that she would rather do it and be criticized than not do it at all.
“I’m white – however you want to interpret me as wanting to engage with our aboriginal culture, that’s fair enough. I totally accept that, because it’s really complicated, “she admitted.” It’s not something where I have both feet on the ground – I’m a little overwhelmed, and I’m the first to admit it, and I’m open to any response to that. “