Hi there again, Scotty.
I just remembered that I had bought CD by Dame Kiri Te Kanawa called "Maori Songs". I checked the album sleeve again, and here is how it's translated:
Po Karekare ana -
Glisten on, waters of Waiapu*!
Come to me, beloved,
my love is true.
I have sent you a message
And a token of love.
But if your parents see these,
trouble will begin.
Oh my love - Be true to me!
A much travelled tune, loyally claimed by Maori people from 4 separate areas of New Zealand as originating in their district. It was first publised in 1919 as a soldiers' ditty and re-published in a more 'polished' form in 1926.
Several later popularised adaptations emerged - such as a promotion for the America's Cup and Rolf Harris' hit "Hurry Hurry Home".
In 1987, Paraire Tomoana was posthumously registered as the composer. The song has been closely associated with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa during her concert career, and the version she presents here is that used by Air New Zealand in its widely-heard promotions.
*The name of the river referred to in the song is traditionally changed in performance, depending on the district of the solo singer's origin.
The version that we saw last year in Australia isn't the version sung by Dame Kiri, Scotty. I guess there was another slew of ads before the current one which used her version. You can view that latest version of the Air New Zealand ad from their NZ website, or you can download the song by itself "Po Karekare Ana" at the same page in MP3 format.
I agree with you, Scotty, that is one of the most beautiful traditional songs I've ever heard. Another one wold be "Tanah Air Ku" which was used by Garuda Indonesia in their adverts many years ago to celebrate the arrival of their MD-11's.
How did I know this song as a Scout even though I'm in Singapore? Well babe, I can't answer that question! All the brother Scouts and sister Guides here sing this song, and I have to say that it was always my fave. I agree that it's weird that it somehow ended up as a big hit here, though. LOL!!!
Once again, the name of the CD is "Maori Songs" by Dame Kiri Te Kanawa. It's got 16 tracks, all sung in the Maori language. It's worth buying if you're into traditonal music with a Polynesian sound. Look out for it!
I'm back in Singapore now, Scotty. I've currently got a job as an Operations Assistant at Changi Airport's T1, but you've already read about that in RA already. I'll be going back to Melbourne next month on 15 Feb, just in time to catch the Australian International Airshow 2001 at Avalon. WOO HOO!!!!