Headliner 2023: Grant Haua and The Grant Haua Explosion

Returning to Aotearoa this November from his now annual overseas touring programme (a ten week stint taking in France- Europe, Australia). Grant Haua (Ngati Pukenga), who was long time half of blues-roots stompers Swamp Thing, will present in concert his deep timbre soul blues vocals/acoustic guitars and foot percussion (Cajon/snare). This performance relates heavily to his Māori culture which are at the heart of these songs.
He’s our own real deal in the blues and with his soulful voice – which can shift from raw to reserved – is worth hearing and that’s not to mention his phenomenal guitar skills (incendiary that can power a small city).
A seasoned artist who touches all kinds of points in the blues and folk from Taj Mahal and JJ Cale to dialled down Stevie Ray and even an adventurous touch of acoustic James Blood Ulmer. Seems like this is Grant Haua’s time’ Graham Reid (Elsewhere Magazine).
It may be simple, and at times does feel closer to pre-war blues than music from 2021, but it is also incredibly honest. What you hear is what you get with Grant, and in this throwaway and image-centred false world that is something very special indeed.
Hot on the heels of his solo performance on Friday at the festival, The Grant Haua Explosion is booked to play Saturday as well. We can’t wait!


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Extending our appreciation to all the volunteers who worked tirelessly to make the 2023 NZ Blues & BBQ the great success it was. Also our