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Taranaki Stories

These stories capture the very essence of Taranaki – the people and the landscape.
They record the achievements of those who live here, the struggles of the first settlers, the determination to overcome challenges, those who have made their mark on not only their own, but also future generations.
But the stories are not just about hardship – they are also inspiring, thrilling, mystifying, enlightening and entertaining.
 
 

 

Taranaki Stories

Showing stories tagged as music.

Savage Days

by Rhonda Bartle on 09 December 2009

Keith Jackson has been a member of Savagery for 45 years, with the last 36 years at Waitara Savage Club.   “I'm currently the President. That's an honour I've waited 45 years for. It's my third and final year.   “You usually only hold office for two years, but they couldn't find anybody worse that I was,”he laughs.    He doesn't believe you need special qualities for the job, just the...

Songs from Sampson and the ‘Toys’

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

Classic Kiwi anthem For Today began its life in Waitara during the summer of 1984-85. Nick Sampson of the Netherworld Dancing Toys was working in the small goods and sundries section of Borthwicks freezing works at the time. This was the Taranaki lad's fourth season at the works and another summer spent with his grandmother, Elsie Sampson, at 68 Domett Street. He wrote most of For Today...

Remembering the Best Years

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

The Waitara freezing works played a pivotal role in the future of one of Taranaki's most successful pop stars. For four summers, Nick Sampson of the Netherworld Dancing Toys worked at Borthwicks to save money for further study. But when he began his second season there, the young man had less academic plans. After finishing the seventh form at Francis Douglas Memorial College in 1980, Nick...

Midge Marsden Tunes In

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

When Midge Marsden first began learning music he used sandwiches to skip the boring bits. The rhythm and blues master, best known for his high-energy guitar, harmonica and vocal performances, began his early tinkerings on black and white keys. "In those days my parents bought a piano from Colliers at great sacrifice and paid for lessons," says the New Plymouth-born musician. There are...

Howling on the Harmonica

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

Blues man Midge Marsden has bled for his music. When the Taranaki-born musician first learnt to play the harmonica, he practiced until his lips were rubbed ragged. "You spend hours and hours at it and your mouth would be raw, your lips would be raw with skin that's come off," he says. His harmonica-howling days began back in the 1960s, while playing second guitar for The Breakaways....

Breakaway Days of Midge

by Virginia Winder on 09 December 2009

Have flash guitar, will look cool - that was Midge Marsden's cunning plan when he was a lad. And it worked so well, the New Plymouth-born son found himself on stage for the rest of his life. For more than four decades, Midge has been playing the guitar, singing pop, rock and the blues, howling on his harmonica, and jumpstarting joints with his wild jive talkin'. It all began in the late...

Dance Band Man – Errol Taylor

by Rhonda Bartle on 09 December 2009

Errol Taylor has been involved in the music scene in Taranaki for more than 55 years and his musical life is not over yet.   The seemingly indefatigable musician played in most of popular Taranaki dance bands of the 50s, 60s and 70s.   The Daltones, The Nite-Lites and The Nevadas were all names to set the feet flying at the Queens Hall and Star Gym, not to mention countless other venues around...