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Tūtira mai ngā iwi boosts US, NZ military ties: ‘It’s so infectious’

New Zealand’s lockdown has had all sorts of unexpected results – but one of the more surprising is a musical partnership between the New Zealand and United States armed forces.

Performers from the navy, army and airforce bands have together produced a version of the waiata Tūtira mai ngā iwi and posted it to YouTube.

The song’s composer was Wiremu Te Tau Huata who was a New Zealand military chaplain to the 28th Maori Battalion. His whānau gave permission for the waiata to be used.

One of the drivers of the project was Staff Sergeant Bryan Andrews of the US Air Force Band of the Pacific.

He told Morning Report that his band usually travel all over the Pacific performing for various audiences. They were supposed to send a team to New Zealand in April but the trip was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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