Stephanie Brown, also known as Lips, has won this year's APRA Silver Scroll Award for her song Everything to Me.
The Silver Scroll Awards recognise a song's merit, rather than sales, and is widely regarded as New Zealand's most prestigious song writing award.
The award night’s host, comedian Dai Henwood, described the evening as " the Olympics of songwriting, though hopefully no one gets their award taken off them".
Two Christchurch artists Adam McGrath and Julia Deans were shortlisted for the award.
A select audience watched as each of the five shortlisted songs was covered by guest artist: The Nudge tackled Brown's Everything to Me, Lydia Cole's Hibernate was covered by LA Mitchell, metallers Beastwars played Adam McGrath's track State Houses By The River, Julia Deans was joined by a string quarter for Kody Nielson's Getaway Tonight and Annah Mac's song Girl in Stilettos was transformed by The Wyld.
Brown said the Silver Scroll Award was like no other music award. "This is about the highest accolade you can wish for as a songwriter.
"I'm so grateful for the musical on-the-job training I've had here in Auckland."
Brown, who recently moved to New York, dedicated her win to her parents, who "have had to endure a lot of bad songs".
Previous winners of the Silver Scroll include Don McGlashan, Neil Finn and Chris Knox.
Avalanche City's hit Love, Love, Love won the award in 2011.
Also handed out on the night was the award for most performed works in New Zealand and overseas, won by last year’s Silver Scroll winner, Love, Love, Love, Dave Baxter
Matahiapo by Awa won the APRA Maioha Award, while the SOUNZ Contemporary Award went to [inner] by Alex Taylor.
But the evening arguably belonged to Herbs.
The iconic Kiwi band was inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame by singer Che Fu, who described growing up with the band, their fearless path and done "funny smelling smoke".
"The rebels had spoken and I loved them for that."
Over 30 years, eight albums and 27 members, Herbs are widely regarded as the founding fathers of Pacific reggae.
"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.
Seventeen of the band's members were on hand to collect the honour before leading a rapturous crowd in a version of E Papa.
Band member Dilworth Karaka said the band, who hadn't seen each other in 20 years, still had "the magic, the spirit, the love".
The night was closed by Dave Dobbyn performing his legendary hit, Slice of Heaven.
Silver Scroll Award winner Everying to Me by Lips:
- © Fairfax NZ News