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Bryan Adams

Q&A: Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams is returning to New Zealand in March 2019 to play concerts in Auckland and Wellington before being joined by Dave Dobbyn and the Jordan Luck Band to perform in Nelson and Christchurch.


Bryan Adams


We catch up with the ‘(Everything I Do) I Do It for You’ hitmaker ahead of his trip down under.


How many times have you visited New Zealand and what is your impression of our country?
I’ve been at least half a dozen times, all for gigs. My impression of NZ is much like everyone else in the world, this is where we need to go if there is a third world war. It’s safe, there is a strong environmental movement and you’re almost as nice as us Canadians.


What can we expect from your new album, Shine A Light?
It’s a collection of songs I wrote while not working on the Broadway musical “Pretty Woman: The Musical”. ‘Shine A Light’, the lead single, was co-written (on email) with my new friend Ed Sheeran, plus I have a duet with….


Jennifer Lopez! What is she like to work with after your duet ‘That’s How Strong Our Love Is’?
Yes… Jennifer sounds amazing on the song; I think everyone will be surprised how well we sing together. I’m delighted we were able to fit it into our busy schedules.


Your music spans over four decades with a host of feel-good hits. What is your favourite and why?
I like all the songs everyone else likes. It’s easy to go on tour these days, everyone sings them for me. So honestly it would be hard to choose one song out of them all. ‘Summer of 69’ has turned into this global hit at parties and in karaoke. It’s funny because when it was released it hardly did anything. I think that’s true of many of my songs, they’ve been sleepers.


You’ve done a lot of humanitarian work and given back to many disadvantaged people through The Bryan Adams Foundation. Is there any particular project that you’ve supported that stands out for you?
For sure. In 2013, I did a photography book and exhibition featuring wounded soldiers, “Wounded – The Legacy of War”.


Out of all the artists and musicians you have worked with, who has had the biggest impact on your music career?
Tina Turner helped me back in the mid-80s by taking me to Europe. We sang every night and ripped the place apart. Was truly the most fun.


You turn 60 this year… how will you celebrate?
I’m not sure yet, probably underneath a bed sheet somewhere, or out trying to learn how to surf (my life-long ambition).


What does the future hold for Bryan Adams?
Other than international surfer extraordinaire? I’m just loving my daughters and trying to master the art of growing tomatoes.

You can add published winning photographer to the list of your multi-talents. What is your favourite subject/topic to photograph?
People, I love interesting characters. I have a book coming this year called ‘Homeless’ on people living on the streets of London.
See you soon NZ.



Making its musical mark

Making its musical mark: Sign of the Takahe

After a $2.8 million post-quake repair, historic Sign of the Takahe is set to make its musical mark as the grand masterpiece finally opens to the public again for a series of summer events.


Making its musical mark


Organised by local Cashmere resident, event manager and jazz pianist Katie Martin, the free summer series on Sunday afternoons from 20 January to February 10 from 4-6pm will make the most of the iconic venue’s indoor and outdoor space with performances from some of the region’s best jazz musicians. Food and coffee vendors, children’s entertainment and bar services will also be available.

“As a long-term local resident with fantastic memories of good times at the Sign of the Takahe in its pre-quake days, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share this amazing icon with the wider community,” Katie says.
“Live music will include the River City Jazzmen on Sunday 20 January from 4-6pm and The Mike Bickers Boptet on Sunday 27 January from 4-6pm, with other bands still to be confirmed.”

In October 2018, a Cashmere Primary School Te Pae Kereru open day fundraiser saw more than 2,500 people visit the restored building. “People had some wonderful stories of their memories at The Sign of the Takahe and what the building meant to them,” Katie says.  “They were so excited to visit the site and since then have been talking about how they would love to see this landmark open and used again. So this summer series seems like an ideal way to make that happen.”



Country Queen

Jody Direen Our Country Queen

Shania Twain might have been her idol, but it was all down to her grandmother that New Zealand’s reigning Queen of Country, Jody Direen, is where she is today.


Jody Direen


“Grandma was very musical. She’d bring her guitar whenever she came to visit; I’d try to wrap my hands around it to strum a few notes. She taught me my first song – Pistol Packin’ Mama. The sensation of being able to play guitar and sing at the same time was amazing! Hats off to Grandma – she was my inspiration.”

When Jody was five, the family moved from Mosgiel to Wanaka; it’s still her base, but she’s seldom home for long periods of time. “Music’s been my fulltime career for around six years now. I’m very lucky to be making a living doing something I love.”

Jody has travelled to Nashville to write and record her songs, and has also performed there. “Nashville’s considered the mecca of country music. There’s nothing like it, but it’s also extremely competitive. I remember going into this bar along Broadway, this woman was singing – an amazing voice… think Tina Turner on steroids – and she was singing for tips!”

In 2014 Jody performed at Nashville’s Country Music Association Festival (CMA), in the Global Artists Showcase category. “The CMA Festival is one of the biggest country music festivals in the world; to be selected to perform there is the opportunity of a lifetime!”
Jody has already released three albums; next year she will release her fourth.

Signed to Australian labels ABC Music and Universal Music, Jody spends much of her time between New Zealand and Australia. “I’ve come to think of it as one big country now. One night I might be performing in Christchurch, the next it will be Sydney. It gets hard sometimes, but I’ve got a great core band; we’re there for each other. I couldn’t do it without them.”

When not writing, recording or on the road, Jody’s overseeing iHeartRadio Top Paddock Music Festival, a yearly New Year’s Eve event held at Wanaka’s Lake Hawea that was created by Jody. “Top Paddock gives me the chance to pay it forward to my artist friends by giving them a stage, a venue and a hugely appreciative audience.”

Jody reflects on what would be the pinnacle of her career. “To have bigger shows and venues would be fantastic, and perhaps a collaboration with a pop group, because the lines between pop/rock/hip-hop and country are becoming increasingly blurred – Nelly and Tim McGraw’s Over and Over, for instance. I’d love to do something like that!”

For a woman of such drive, passion and massive talent as Jody Direen, it can only be a matter of time.


Bryan Adams

Bryan Adams brings rock back

He encapsulates the 1980s, with a career spanning more than four decades and a signature brand of feel-good rock’n’roll hits, now Bryan Adams is returning to New Zealand with his ‘Shine A Light’ tour.



Bryan Adams


Presented by Neptune Entertainment and The Breeze, the four-date tour will celebrate the release of his forthcoming album Shine a Light and follows his visit to Kiwi shores earlier this year, when tens of thousands of Kiwis jumped at the opportunity to see the Canadian icon live. This time around Adams will play to crowds and cities he didn’t visit earlier this year, including Spark Arena in Auckland on March 12 and TSB Bank Arena in Wellington on 14 March. His tour will also take in the South Island, with shows in Nelson at Trafalgar Park on 16 March and Hagley Park in Christchurch on 17 March.

One of the most highly-acclaimed singer/songwriters, Adams is known for hit singles ‘(Everything I Do) I Do It For You’, ‘Summer Of ’69’ and his Rod Stewart and Sting collaboration ‘All for Love’. The Grammy-winning artist has seen success from a string of number ones in over 40 countries and has sold in excess of 65 million records worldwide. His thirst for performing and his unique take on live concerts have established him as one of the world’s best rock singers.

Thousands of New Zealanders got the chance to see Adams live in action earlier this year, with his shows receiving critical acclaim.
“Bryan Adams kicked off his Get Up! Tour in absolutely tip-top style… We’ve sung our hearts out, clapped our hands and waved our phone lights in gleeful revelry, and bounced our way through a solid two-hour set of pure, simple, honest pop-rock delivered with absolute class,” Ambient Light described of the earlier tour.

On his upcoming tour, Adams will be joined for the South Island shows only by special guests Dave Dobbyn and The Jordan Luck Band.
Both legendary Kiwi acts in their own right, Dobbyn started his career in Th’ Dudes and DD Smash, before going solo and releasing hit after hit, including ‘You Oughta Be In Love’, ‘Slice of Heaven’, ‘Loyal’ and ‘Welcome Home’. Meanwhile Jordan Luck was the lead singer and songwriter for The Exponents for several decades, with countless hits to his name, including ‘Why Does Love Do This To Me’, ‘Who Loves Who The Most’, ‘Victoria’ and ‘Whatever Happened To Tracey’.

The Jordan Luck Band will be playing all of the classic hits from The Exponents on this tour. Bryan Adams – 17 March 2019 Hagley Park, Christchurch with special guests Dave Dobbyn and The Jordan Luck Band.


For more information visit


Entertainment Company

Making musical magic: the Entertainment Company

As the name suggests, the Entertainment Company is able to knock your socks off, providing your function with the most awe-inspiring choreographed music and dance extravaganzas in town.


Entertainment Company


Director/Choreographer Sandy Gray has years of experience putting on the most magical and spell-bounding performances, thanks to her team of Christchurch’s most talented dancers, musicians, singers and cabaret companions.
The Entertainment Company also invite you to ‘A Night with the Stars’ on 30 November 7:30pm at Chateau on the Park Double Tree by Hilton.

You will be treated to two hours of music from icons like David Bowie, Aretha Franklin, Amy Winehouse, Freddie Mercury and many more, all performed by the newly formed Entertainment Company House Band. Delicious platter food will be on offer too.


With loads of dancers, backing vocalists, costumes and effects, this is one event all music lovers will not want to miss. Tickets are $50 at Eventbrite.

For more information, visit


String to her bow

String to her bow: Cathy Irons

Acclaimed violinist Cathy Irons has added another string to her bow – pardon the pun – for the Classical Jazz Quartet’s concerts in Southern Lakes later this month.


String to her bow


Cathy and fellow Christchurch-based musicians Barry Brinson (piano/keyboard), Michael Davis (bass) and Doug Brush (drums) return for two shows at Labour Weekend, following their warm reception at Arrowtown Spring Arts Festival 2017.
The quartet is excited to be performing together again, and Cathy promises that lovers of both jazz and classical genres will be entertained. “The audience comes along on a journey with us,” she says. “We give music a makeover, taking people’s favourites and infusing them with fresh inspiration and rhythmic drive.”

Reflecting her passion for music and dedication to her craft, Cathy has been learning to play the viola especially for the southern shows. This means she will be able to play ‘Tango,’ which is a movement from Bolling’s Suite for Violin and Jazz Piano Trio. Acquiring this new skill is no mean feat: the viola is larger than the violin and playing it is more physically taxing on the fingers.

Cathy says the concert programme includes Vivaldi’s ‘Spring’ from the Four Seasons – “we’re going to have a bit of fun with that” – and C.P.E. Bach’s ‘Solfeggietto.’ “People might not know that title, but they’ll recognise it when they hear it.” CJQ perform at The Rippon Hall (Wanaka) on Saturday 20 October and at Thomas L. Brown Gallery (Lake Hayes, near Queenstown) on Sunday 21 October. Tickets available through Eventfinda, plus there will be limited door sales.




Stan Walker

Stan Walker hits the high note: Q&A with Stan Walker

It’s been the biggest year of Stan Walker’s life; he has fought and won the battle against stomach cancer. Now he’s getting back to what he loves, with a 12-date New Takeover tour that will see him performing across New Zealand’s main centres throughout October and November.


Stan Walker


Metropol caught up with Stan to discuss his excitement about getting back on the road.

How much are you looking forward to your first tour in five years?

I’m excited. I’ve been waiting for this for so long and now I’m finally actually doing it. I’m on the road this month – I can’t wait!

You’ve had a pretty intense journey in recent times with stomach cancer. How difficult has your journey back to health been?

I guess it was pretty hard at times, but it all went by really fast and I’ve never felt better, to be honest. When it was all happening, it was hard, but it kind of happened really quickly. Now I’m skinny, fit and healthy; I feel real good.

Is this journey something you’re able to channel into your performance?

I guess so. I think I’m more on fire than I have been ever before, for my career, my goals, my flame has been reignited even more. It’s all part of the fuel for performing. I’m more motivated and determined and better than I was before as a singer.

In the beginning you feared never being able to sing again, how important is singing to you and how would that outcome have affected you?

Singing, it’s everything, it’s my be-all, I’m a singer before anything, so it would have affected everything, my whole life. Thankfully my voice came back stronger and better than before.

How much of a difficult decision was it to share your journey through your documentary?

Not really, I was excited to share that experience. I just wanted to share with people how it really is going through that sort of thing.

How has this experience changed you?

I’m skinnier, that’s the biggest change! I can wear anything I want to now (he laughs). It has made me more passionate, more excited, more on fire than I ever have been before.

You released a self-titled EP in March, can you tell us what this album meant to you?

Those are songs that I had written a long time ago, one I had written 11 years ago, four songs were from four years ago; they were all songs that were sitting there and meant something special to me, from ‘breakthrough’ points in my life. I wasn’t intending to do an EP; I wasn’t intending to do anything, but it made sense to have my own music on the documentary and that ended up being a really positive thing; it became what it became.

What do the next 12 months have in store for you?

A lot of work; I love working, love being busy, love getting tired from chasing my dreams, love making music, films, working on new projects, things that stretch me as a creative person and an artist.

How does it feel to have such a strong and diverse following across many ages and to have such a big fan base that are following your journey and what you’re up to?

I always find it interesting that people follow me. I am really grateful. I think a lot of times, I’m me and who I am 24/7 and I’m like really? I’m really grateful and chuffed at the same time. There are a lot of people that have followed me since the early days, since my Idol days. I’ve changed so much since Idol; my music has changed, even this next season of music and film, it’s completely different to the last, yet people follow my journey and I get new fans along the way. I find it really interesting but I’m really grateful.



Sons of Zion

A Reggae Return: Sons of Zion

Hit Kiwi band Sons of Zion has just wrapped-up a seven-date nationwide tour, while their latest hit ‘Drift Away’ continues to dominate Kiwi radio and smash up the charts.


Sons of Zion


The band’s single ‘Drift Away’, which comes from their new full-length album Vantage Point, has been the no. 1 most played song on New Zealand radio for four weeks running. It also topped the NZ Top 20 NZ Singles chart and has had close to 3 million streams on Spotify and 130,000 video views.

The band, which consists of Rio, Sam, Joel, Matt, Ross and Caleb – first made its musical mark in 2009 with a self-titled debut album, soon finding success at home and abroad as a reggae group.
Now after a five-year gap between albums, Rio Panapa says that the band has got better with age. “The things we write about today are deeper and more meaningful,” he says.

“We were just teenagers writing about immature things. That’s naturally evolved. Now some of the boys have families and things, so everything we do has matured.” Now more “fearless”, the boys are comfortable with who they are and are not focused on fitting into the boxes that get them radio air time. “We’re a lot more comfortable with making music that we like now.

“Vantage Point is a real aspirational album. It’s about going to bigger heights in our music. It’s a representation of where we see ourselves and where we want to be – which is at the top of a mountain looking at our success.”



Phil Collins

Phil Collins Rocks into Town: Not Dead Yet Live! Tour

Global superstar Phil Collins will be rocking his way down under, early next year. The former Genesis singer and drummer has been making his way across the US and Europe as part of his Not Dead Yet: Live! Tour, presented by TEG Dainty.


Phil Collins


One of the most successful artists of the 1980s with more than 280 million records sold, the English soft-rocker will be playing at Christchurch Stadium (formerly AMI Stadium) for one night only on 4 February after attracting sell-out crowds across the UK and Europe.
The highly-anticipated comeback tour Not Dead Yet: Live! began in the UK and Europe last June, with his five-night show at Royal Albert Hall in London selling out within 15 seconds. He also sold out all five arena shows in Germany and five arena shows in France, along with successfully headlining a 65,000-capacity show at Hyde Park.

He was a somewhat reluctant frontman, after starting out as a drummer in the 1970s, but he took Genesis from a beloved rock group to one of the biggest bands in the world. He made his smashing global solo debut with 1981’s Face Value and the album’s hit single In The Air Tonight, both of which topped the charts around the world and went multi-platinum in Australia.

Multiple chart-topping hits followed, with seven Top 10 Australian singles, including You Can’t Hurry Love, Against All Odds (Take A Look At Me Now), One More Night, A Groovy Kind Of Love.
“I thought I would retire quietly,” Phil says of his return to the spotlight. “But thanks to the fans, my family and support from some extraordinary artists I have rediscovered my passion for music and performing. It’s time to do it all again and I’m excited. It just feels right.”

Securing the concert has been the result of a collaborative effort between ChristchurchNZ and Vbase, Vbase Board Chair, city councillor Tim Scandrett says. “Christchurch is set to become the concert capital of the South Island as our entertainment venues come online and fill up with many more world-class national and international headline acts.”
ChristchurchNZ General Manager of Destination and Attraction, Loren Heaphy says the global music legend is a significant feat for the city.

“We’re stoked that Collins has chosen to play in Christchurch. We’re expecting a sell-out crowd of die-hard fans and our city will be pumping with local and national visitors,” she says.
Phil’s backing band will feature long-time touring members, including guitarist Daryl Stuermer, keyboardist Brad Cole, bassist Leland Sklar and percussionist Luis Conte, along with a horn selection and backup vocalists. Phil’s 16-year old son, Nicholas, will round up the band on drums.



Artistic Attraction

North Canterbury’s Artistic attraction

As an escape from any urban existence, North Canterbury is perfect. Not only spectacularly beautiful, it boasts pure mountain air and hot pools; forest or alpine walks and mountain-biking. That high-adrenaline sports happen here is obvious when driving the last stretch over the precipitous Hanmer bridge.
Artistic Attraction


Home to a great gourmet and shopping scene, the alpine village of Hanmer Springs has long been foodie and fashion heaven, plus an outdoor adventure base.
Long-standing resident Grum Frith was “cycling solo around the world” in recent years when an idea emerged. Hanmer Springs had potential not only as a sporting playground-cum-holiday rest cure. It was also an ideal getaway-venue for cultural pursuits. Accordingly, a music and arts trust was formed.
Over the past 18 months things have gained momentum. Musicians and artists have begun to visit and perform here. Workshops in song-writing, singing, drama, photography, upholstery, sculpture, dance and film have been planned.

Music and Arts Hanmer Springs Trust community facilitator, Grum, says parts of the old Queen Mary Hospital have been sanctioned for use for specific events. For instance, last Labour weekend local artists held an exhibition in the hospital’s Soldier’s Block.
On 11 August, an internationally acclaimed violinist will offer a performance and masterclass in the village. Next, a pre-Christmas play is proposed by local thespians. See details of upcoming events at