Sunshine, fine wine and stunning scenery. Anika Moa admits being in the line-up of the annual Winery Tour isn't a difficult gig, especially as North Canterbury's Waipara Hills is among the nine wineries around the country on the schedule, bringing her back to her hometown, Christchurch.
"It's really nice to get to play to my own city, even if it is a bit out of the city itself. Although I haven't lived in Christchurch itself for a long time, I still think of it as my home."
And getting to play this year with other New Zealand music icons such as Dave Dobbyn, Don McGlashan and Supergroove just adds to the appeal.
"It's my fourth winery tour. I keep returning each year because I love it. I get to drink beautiful wine in gorgeous parts of the country and get paid for travelling New Zealand. It's also a real privilege to play alongside people like Dave and Don, who are spectacular songwriters that I really look up to. I'm humbled to be in the same line-up."
Anika says the tour is child-friendly - not just for people coming to watch, who can bring their families along to enjoy the entertainment, but for her as a performer, as well. Her partner, Natasha, and their four-month-old son, Soren, will be travelling with her. Anika also has three-year-old twin boys, Barry and Taane, with former wife Angela Fyfe, and they both loved running around at previous wine tour gigs.
"Soren is pretty young, but he has to learn to tour. My mum was a musician and took all six of us kids with her when she was touring around New Zealand. It's totally do-able."
Anika and Natasha will take the opportunity to visit family and friends while in Canterbury.
"Natasha lived in Christchurch for 10 years, so there's lots of people she wants to see. And it's a chance for me to catch up with old school friends, teachers and sports friends. And, of course, my mum in Dunsandel, who I lived with for six months last year."
Anika will play hits from her four previous albums, as well as new songs off her latest album set to be released in April. Once the tour ends, she hopes to complete her second baby album, with her first one having been released in 2013.
Having kids has given a new dimension to her music and she concedes it has also slowed her down a bit, although that isn't a bad thing.
"I'm 34 now and I love music, but I love my children more. I'm trying to phase my work out a bit, but they keep inspiring me to write more."
In the meantime, the Winery Tour means she gets to enjoy the best of both worlds: her family and passion for music. And that can only mean good things for Cantabrians who appreciate fine wine and top Kiwi entertainment.
The Winery Tour
Saturday, February 28, Waipara Hills
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