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NZMM: Favourite Wellington Music Moment – Janina Hanify

Last edited: 20.05.16 | Comment? | By

For New Zealand Month last year we asked a bunch of people what they thought made Wellington music unique as well as what their favourite albums by Wellington artists were.

This year we thought we would do something similar, but slightly different. This time we’re asking people for a favourite memory of making music in Wellington. It could involve a favourite gig, a funny story from the recording studio, a moment that led to the inspiration for a song, the fond recollection of a defunct venue, or the piece of music or lyric that they are most proud of creating.

Today we caught up with Janina Hanify who records under the name Janina, and who released her debut EP ‘Mercy’ in 2004 with cellist Francesca Mountfort. Following her stint as a reporter at Capital Times, she headed to America then to London, where she lived for four years working for Trinity College of Music. She moved back home to Wellington to record her album ‘The Original Ending’, engineering and producing the album herself alongside brother/musician Stevie Starr, with mixing and mastering by Auckland based producer Andrew Buckton. Currently raising a family with Supermodel front-man Mark Hanify (as well as appearing on their last album Rimu & Roses in 2013) she does say there will be some new music of her own at some point in the future.

I was recording my album ‘The Original Ending’ (released 2011) in a self-built studio in Mt Cook, Wellington but one song was unfinished. I’d hit a wall with it. It needed a fresh wave of inspiration.

Then it came. I was offered a free overnight journey on a yacht across the Cook Strait. After a few red wines I agreed to go. A storm hit. There were huge swells. I was sick. Everyone was sick. We made it to Picton… Alive.

Back in Wellington, rumbling swells turned into rolling bass lines and the song Before You Sail was complete.

One of my favourite Wellington artists is my brother Stevie Starr. He’s working on material for a new record but his 2009 album We hope in all things new is dear to my heart.

You can buy Janina’s album on Bandcamp here.

Cover image











Cover used with permission.

Posted in: Favourite Wellington Music MomentGeneralNew Zealand Music Month

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