Wayne Mason


About this artist...

Decade(s) active:

From AudioCulture

The story of songwriter Wayne Mason is familiar enough. Born in 1949 in New Plymouth with his teenage years spent in Upper Hutt, in 1963 he joined Heretaunga College band Sine Waves, which evolved into The Fourmyula, one of New Zealand's top bands of the 1960s. His next band of note was Rockinghorse, and in the 1980s there was The Warratahs. Three top NZ bands over three decades but hardly a household name, not like Dave Dobbyn or Neil Finn, despite that song. "Oh that song!" mimics Wayne Mason. "That's how a lot of my audiences react when I play 'Nature' – oh, he wrote that song." In 2001 Mason's song ‘Nature’, recorded by The Fourmyula in 1969, was chosen by APRA members to be the best New Zealand composition of the previous 75 years. It has been a hotly debated issue since (check out the NZ music social media pages) and everybody has an opinion. Best New Zealand song? It was always going to be a big call, but whether you agree or not, ‘Nature’ got the nod and there has been no other “official” survey since. Read moreProfile from Audioculture, available under a Attribution Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand Licence

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Albums by this artist

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From DigitalNZ:

  • View on NZ On Screen Making Music - Wayne Mason

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: Music ; Arts/Culture ; Short Film

    "Wayne Mason — multi-instrumentalist and composer of The Fourmyula classic 'Nature' — talks about songwriting and his musical evolution in this episode, from a series made for high school students. He demonstrates his piano playing (on an energetic boogie-woogie work out) and a Scandalli accordion on 'High and Dry' (which he wrote in the Warratahs). He discusses the origins of 'Nature', and his songwriting technique (which always begins on a guitar); and muses on his high school band The Fourmyula which took him to Abbey Road, where he met The Beatles." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • View on NZ On Screen The Warratahs

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: Music Video

    "The Warratahs formed in 1986 around Wayne Mason (ex-Fourmyula, and composer of the classic 'Nature') and Barry Saunders, with TVNZ arts presenter Nik Brown on fiddle. Following a residency playing covers of country standards at Wellington's Cricketers Arms, they began recording their own material. Their timeless, Kiwi-inflected, neo-traditional country, and relentless touring made them a unique presence in the fashion conscious music scene of the late 80s. After a few years off, the band have since reformed." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • View on NZ On Screen Thru the Southern Moonlight

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: Pop ; Country ; Funk ; Music Video

    "In 1973 EMI NZ producer Alan Galbraith saddled up Rockinghorse: a supergroup of Kiwi musicians (including ‘Nature’ composer Wayne Mason) to provide session music for the label’s artists. Rockinghorse found success of their own with the third single from the Throughbred album — ‘Thru the Southern Moonlight’. It won Best Single at the 1975 RATA Awards. The band also won Best Group and their celebrations led to a year-long ban from the Lion Breweries pub circuit. Here they funk up the cowbells in a 1974 end-of-year special, for Christchurch-based music show Pop Co." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • View on NZ On Screen The Popco Special

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: Music ; Television

    "Musician Hayden Wood presents this 1974 end of year special for the Christchurch-based music show (with a number of acts performing in exterior locations around the Garden City). A stellar cast includes Steve Gilpin (prior to Mi-Sex), Rob Guest (before musicals fame), Space Waltz (in technicolor glam rock glory), Annie Whittle (in the daffodils on the banks of the Avon), Rockinghorse (featuring 'Nature' composer Wayne Mason), Mark Williams (sparkling in lurex), Beaver (in full flight) and the archly named Drut, plus pyrotechnics (who really have to be seen to be believed)." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • Close Up - 'Nature' performed by The Fourmyula

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: News/Current Affairs ; Music ; Television

    "“Through falling leaves I pick my way slowly…” In 1970 a musical paean to getting your nature buzz topped the charts. ‘Nature’, by The Fourmyula, became a Kiwi classic: in 2001 an APRA poll voted it the best local song of the past 75 years. This 2010 Close Up report, from Auckland’s Montecristo Room, sees presenter Mark Sainsbury introduce the band's second performance of 'Nature' in Aotearoa (the band were overseas when it topped the charts). He quizzes composer Wayne Mason, and drummer Chris Parry recalls encountering The Clash while working in the English music scene." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • View on NZ On Screen Rockinghorse

    Source: NZ On Screen

    "In 1973 EMI producer Alan Galbraith amassed a supergroup of Kiwi musicians to provide session music for the label’s artists, including singer Mark Williams. The band’s first line-up was Wayne Mason and Carl Evensen (The Fourmyula), Keith Norris and Clint Brown (Rebirth, Taylor) and Bruce Robinson (Face, The Pleazers). Rockinghorse released two albums of their own, and won gongs for Best Group and Single at the 1975 RATA Awards. The band's celebrations led to a year-long ban from the Lion Breweries pub circuit." (NZ On Screen summary)

  • View on NZ On Screen Words

    Source: NZ On Screen

    Resource type: Pop ; Music Video

    "Singer/songwriter Sharon O’Neill did Los Angeles inspired, mid-70s pop/rock as well as many of her contemporaries in California — but it’s hard to imagine opening lines as striking as these ones coming from that West Coast. ‘Words’ was the first single from her self titled, second long player which won her Album of the Year and Best Female Vocalist at the 1980 NZ Awards. After years behind the keyboards, O’Neill shines in this video filmed in front of an audience with a band that includes Simon Morris, Wayne Mason and future Mutton Bird Ross Burge." (NZ On Screen summary)


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