Corrella's Blue Eyed Māori now spent almost nine months as New Zealand's number-one hit

In just four short years of releasing music, Corrella has gone from a covers band in the Navy - called 'The Marinades' - to releasing a record with a two-times platinum single that's still number one.

The eight-piece roots group are up for Single of the Year for 'Blue Eyed Māori' at the Aotearoa Music Awards, and Best Roots Artist.

Lead singer Pipiwharauroa Campbell and rhythm guitarist Te Naawe Tupe are humbled by the success.

"The last six months has just been a whirlwind of opportunity," Campbell said.

After releasing their album, Road to 26, last year, Tupe said 'Blue Eyed Māori' was the song they thought would do the worst.

"In all honesty, I was amazed to even see that we got nominated."

Tupe wrote the song as a "dedication to his goddaughter".

"It's also got some underlying historical meaning to it as well... how Māori came to have blue eyes and green eyes. There are stories from around the motu that, in some places it happened in quite a harsh way, which was to do with the Land Wars."

Campbell added it also acknowledges "Māori of all different shapes, sizes, colours, coloured eyes".

The pair sat down the The Hui.
The pair sat down the The Hui. Photo credit: The Hui

The band started out in 2016 doing covers under the name 'The Marinades' - "the mariners who serenade", Campbell laughed.

In 2020, they decided to start producing their own music and rename themselves Corrella.

They have already played on some of the country's biggest stages, opening One Love in January this year.

But Campbell already has his heart set on a new goal - to fill out a massive stadium like Western Springs.

"People might laugh at it now, but you just got to have goals and you got to have big dreams."

Corrella will play in Auckland at the Powerstation on May 25.

Made with support from New Zealand On Air and Te Māngai Pāho.