Lady Shaka – E Tu Artwork by UMU CREATIVE SML

Lady Shaka – E Tu

Trailblazing Afro Pasifika DJ Lady Shaka today unveils her first original release, ‘E Tu’ with the announcement of her signing to NLV Records.

E Tu’ is a fierce rallying cry of protest. Featuring a flip of Aaria’sKei A Wai Rā Te Kupu’, Lady Shaka’s reimagination of the buoyant R’n’B original is bound by high tempo house bounce. As much a celebration of the unity dance communities forge in their gathering as she speaks to the genre’s political origins, ‘E Tu’ is a prime example of how Lady Shaka’s presence in the scene has spread like wildfire globally – addictive in energy and deep with intention.

“The opening lyrics “me nekeneke tāua, e tū” meaning “let’s move together and stand up” in Te Reo Māori is a great representation of our current political climate in Aotearoa (New Zealand),” Lady Shaka shares. “With the deprioritising of our language in public spaces, the attempted removal of Māori public services and most importantly the current threat to Māori rights with the attempted removal of Te Tiriti o Waitangi, this song is a call to action for not just Tangata Whenua (people of the land) but also Tangata Tiriti (Non-Māori) to unite together, kia tu kotahi (to stand as one).”

“The original sample comes from early 2000’s band Aaria and became popular amongst Māori during the integration of the Māori language into film, television and popular music. For a lot of us who grew up in the era of puna reo (language revitalisation schemes) this song was seen as a form of indigenous resistance being that Aaria were pioneers within the Māori pop scene. Their music showed us ‘the kohanga generation’ that being Māori was special, that being Māori was mean, that being Māori was tūmeke (awesome).”

The moniker of multi-disciplinary artist Shakaiah Perez, Lady Shaka’s musicality is an extension of her ancestry, a member of the Pacific Island, Indigenous Māori and Cape Verdean diaspora raised in Aotearoa (NZ), now residing in London; guided by her connection to the moana (ocean) and queer identity as a fem queen. Raised as a dancer, for Shaka music has always been her vessel to make the “body move, speak, communicate and tell stories,” determined to amplify her communities in every element of her work.

Now with the arrival of ‘E Tu’ marking a bold statement of Lady Shaka’s next chapter, she fast approaches irrefutable main-stay status that presents a captivating example of what electronic music can be when culture comes first.

E Tu’ is out now via NLV Records, buy/stream it here.