Underground freestyle rapper Tihei Harawira of Kaitaia is on the path to bigger things.
Tihei or ‘Natural T' is celebrating a certificate in foundation sound and music, with merit. It was awarded last week by Tai Poutini Polytechnic, the first step he says in formal qualifications that will give him wide ranging skills in music performance and production.
Tihei, a familiar sight - with his CD player - as a busker in Far North towns, has already earned his passage to Scotland through busking. In 2011 he freestyled his way to watch a rugby league world cup series, by offering punters a rap on a subject of their choice in exchange for koha.
His determination to earn enough money to pay his travel costs illustrates the kind of perseverance that is likely to see him succeed as a rap artist.
An audition for New Zealand's Got Talent didn't go well but he's not despondent. He may not have the look they want, he says, but he has what it takes.
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