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Backgrounds in Common

Pikiteora (Pixie) Williams and Rangi Ruru Wananga Karaitiana

shared more than a love of music.


Both were brought up by their grandparents.

Both taught themselves to play the instruments they loved, by ear.

For Ruru it was the piano, guitar, trombone and ukulele.

And while Pixie couldn't read music, she taught herself the piano accordion, guitar,

ukulele, the banjo, and in later years at the age of 73, the electric organ.


But more remarkable for Pixie and Ruru is that they both hailed

from the same Iwi, Ngāti Kahungunu. 


Together, Pixie and Ruru played a significant role in the birth of New Zealand's

indigenous recording industry, and given the cultural landscape was less accepting than today,

is yet another milestone to be celebrated in the making of Blue Smoke.

Photo: Pixie Williams sitting on her (grand) mother's knee at the homestead, Mohaka, 1928

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