Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Tagata Pasifika

The Pacific voice on
New Zealand television
since 1987

Moses Mackay’s debut album ‘Grace’ dedicated to his grandmother

Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air

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Soana Aholelei | Reporter / Director

Award-winning artist Moses Mackay this week released his highly anticipated debut solo album, Grace.

Mackay, one third of the operatic trio ‘Sol3 Mio’ is excited about his new album.

“It’s not opera, not classic, it doesn’t have a technique per se, but not pop music.”

Moses says the album is dedicated to his late grandmother who played a pivotal role in his childhood adding that, for the first ten years of his life, he was diagnosed as “deaf”.

“The first ten years of my life was very much on my own, in my own world,” Moses says.

“I had never heard the music properly, in its full extent, because I was lip-reading and I would lip-read because I couldn’t hear properly. So, I’d sit there watching a mute show.”

Moses Mackay says he was a bit of a problem child.

Originally from the North Shore and now a Waiheke local, Moses recalls memories of his childhood.

“I was a bit of a problem child. I was a bit of a nutcase. I would cry, I was restless, I would fight. And then one day someone asked my mum, ‘have you ever checked your son’s hearing?’ so, she took me to an audiologist, had me checked and they found out that I was actually deaf in both ears and I needed hearing aids. And so, I went back to primary school wearing these big fat hearing aids.”

To help with his disability, Moses’ grandmother took him under her care.

“It was my Nana that took me in when I was young, she’d come into primary school. Then we’d go back to her house and we would pray and we’d walk to church every Sunday. I was very much in her orbit; she was that person for me,” Moses says.

“She ended up getting cancer when I was like 9 or 10 and she passed away.”

Memory of Moses Mackay and his nana.

Around this time, Moses complained about sore ears and, after a test by the audiologist, by some miracle, he no longer had a hearing problem.

“The audiologist said, ‘I’ve never seen this before in my life, but your son has 100% hearing!’

“But apparently, I said, ‘Oh, my nana gave me her hearing’ and I’m completely convinced that it was 100% true.”

Fast forward 20 years, Moses has a successful international singing career and now with new confidence, focusing on his new album, new projects and old passions.

“I think as an artist you grow and you evolve. I love opera and I love classical music. It’s why I studied in this way. I love singing it, but I also have a passion for writing. I also have a passion for traveling. I have so many different passions, but for a long time I didn’t feel like I could and So, I would stay in my lane. I would stay in the box that everyone would put me in.”

No longer in a box, Mackay is moving forward with his projects, with his new album paying homage to his past

“‘Grace’ being the song that I wrote when I was 17 and I wrote it as a dedication to my grandma.
So that was me trying to understand those emotions of her passing when I was 10 years old.

“So, I kind of dedicated the whole album to my grandma.”



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