Reggae group Herbs are the first inductees to be added to the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame for 2012 .
Herbs will be inducted into the Hall of Fame at the APRA Silver Scroll Awards at the Auckland Town Hall tonight.
Over 30 years, eight albums and 27 members, Herbs are arguably the founding fathers of Pacific reggae in New Zealand, said APRA New Zealand Writer Director Don McGlashan.
Since forming in the mid-70s, Herbs have kept their musical message clear in expressing gentle but effective protest, McGlashan said today.
"Herbs broke down a great many doors when they came onto the scene in this country in the early 1980s," he said.
"They fused Pacific and Reggae sounds into something unique and relevant to this part of the world; they gave a voice to an emerging, politically-aware audience that had grown up with the Springbok Tour, Bastion Point and Mururoa, and they gave a generation of young Maori and Pasifika musicians and songwriters a new path to follow.
"Suddenly, the spotlight had moved, and original New Zealand music could be as culturally diverse as the people who make up this country.
"That spotlight hasn't shifted back; it's continued to expand to this day, and the vibrant, multi-cultural music scene that we now enjoy owes much of its existence to this one band."
The New Zealand Music Hall of Fame celebrates those artists and writers who have made a significant contribution to New Zealand through music.
Herbs have made an enormous contribution to the cultural fabric of life in this country, while forging a unique and original sound, said APRA's Anthony Healey.
"This is a real honour to pay tribute to real pioneers in New Zealand music."
Herbs members being inducted are: Dilworth Karaka, Toni Fonoti, Phil Toms, Spencer Fusimalohi, John Berkley, Fred Faleauto and Charles Tumahai (deceased), Maurice Watene, Tama Lundon, Jack Allen, Carl Perkins, Willie Hona, Thom Nepia, Tama Renata, Gordon Joll, Grant Pukeroa, Kristen Hapi.
The five finalist songs in line for New Zealand's most prestigious sing writing price, the APRA Silver Scroll Award for 2012 are:
- State Houses By The River written by Adam McGrath, performed by The Eastern
- Girl in Stilettos written by Anna Macdonald, performed by Annah Mac
- Everything to Me written by Stephanie Brown, performed by Lips
- Getaway Tonight written by Kopdy Nielson, performed by Opossom
- Hibernate written and performed by Lydia Cole