22 Jun 2024

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As one of the most influential rap artists in New Zealand history, Mareko with his South Auckland based crew Deceptikonz, has contributed to the shaping of an entire generation of New Zealand Hip-Hop music.

Mareko is accepted as the major innovator of the Battle MC scene as it is known in New Zealand today.

Following in the footsteps of other MC’s like Canibus, Eminem and Supernatural, Mareko quickly began eliminating the competition winning his first battle in 2000. Advancing on to win that competition a further 4 times, winning the battle for supremacy, thus making him the undisputed champion of New Zealand Hip-Hop.

"Battling is the basis of Hip-Hop music, which people sometimes forget. Hip-Hop is a global business now and I’m just leading the movement for fans in New Zealand" states Mareko.

As well as ground breaking lyrics Mareko is also a vivid storyteller and songwriter, and was nominated for the Silver Scroll Award in 2002 for his part in the Deceptikonz single Fallen Angels.

"When it comes to being a complete artist you need to develop a personal relationship with the fans, the best way to do this is by enticing them with a story they can’t turn off, whilst making it catchy enough to sing along with" says Mareko.

The press has labeled "Hip-Hop is the New Pop, and New Zealand has witnessed a slew of Hip-Hop releases in the last 2 years, Mareko has featured on Platinum albums from DJ Sir-Vere’s Major Flavours Series, P-Money's Gold Album Big Things as well as his 12” inch release, and
underground albums from Dubious Brothers and Unique. Firmly establishing the fact that Mareko is regarded as the supreme lyricist in New Zealand.

Having laid his foundation in New Zealand, for his first solo endeavour White Sunday a reference to Samoan Children’s Day, Mareko has crafted work with strong international feel.

After generating a buzz in New Zealand with an appearance alongside New York Hip Hop star Sadat X off the Major Flavors 3 album, Dawn Raid Entertainment began a vigorous process of establishing Mareko in New York with the crème of the city’s artists. The result is a first for New Zealand music, featuring collaborations with platinum and gold members of the Wu Tang, Beatnutz, X-Ecutioners, Tha Liks, Da Beatminerz and a host of platinum producers.

Mareko - Here to Stay, the anthem, radio friendly first single, produced by Ghetto Pros is Mareko's self titled testament to his place in the hierarchy of the music world with chorus "New Zea-land gather a-round, Welli, Auckland, Christchurch, H Town" the whole country is sure to be jumping.

Mareko has worked hard to deliver a diverse album and just when you have finished waving your hands to the lead singer, he hits you in the head with humorous tracks like Oh Sh** and Big Dummy a comic view of New Zealand personalities, right next to hardcore staples like Street Raps featuring Inspectah Deck and Don’t Need Protection featuring Scram Jones and Roc Raida, which will also serve as Mareko’s first release on 12” inch vinyl.

"I’m the first Samoan emcee to be signed to a New York Hip-Hop label, my label mates are the Beatnutz and Big Daddy Kane, I guess hard work does pay dividends".

Sculpting a complete picture for his debut Mareko is not scared to reveal his soul with listeners, 'Why is That?' is a song of questions with no answers, and a reflection of his life and the things he has observed. 3 Times a Lady is a narration of the 3 important women in his life, his little sister, his partner and his mother, which opens fans to a personal side of the album.

Its official, Mareko’s debut album White Sunday is New Zealand’s first Hip-Hop extravaganza, with collaborations with Inspectah Deck, Beatnuts, Roc Raida, Tha Liks and production by E-Swift, Da Beatminerz, Emile, Scram Jones and P-Money. This album will have hip hop fans world wide popping at the seams and cash registers ringing, so make sure you’re a part of making New Zealand history.





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