The fifth annual AMA Artisan Awards were held this evening, celebrating the Kiwis behind some of our most successful musicians.

In place of a live event, this year’s Artisan Awards were pre-recorded at Massey University’s School of Music and Creative Media Production in Wellington and broadcast on Three this evening.

This year’s winner of Te Kaiwhakaputa Toa | Massey University Best Producer is Josh Fountain, one of Aotearoa’s most in-demand producers and a powerhouse of production and songwriting.

Winning the award for the second year running, he’s worked with international success story BENEE on some of her biggest hits, as well as previous Tui winner MAALA and 2020 AMA finalist Paige.

Taking out Te Kaipukaha Toa | Best Engineer was Simon Gooding for his work on Reb Fountain’s self-titled album, which is up for three Tui at this year’s Aotearoa Music Awards on Sunday.

First time Artisan Award nominee Anahera Parata received the Tui for Te Puoro Ataata Toa | NZ On Air Best Music Video after creating a powerful music video for Onehunga hip hop group SWIDT’s song ‘Bunga’.

Wellington-based artist Lily Paris West was recognised for her work on Mermaiden’s album artwork for Look Me In The Eye and was presented with the Tui for Te Toi Ataata Pukaemi Toa | Best Album Artwork.

Recorded Music New Zealand CEO Damian Vaughan said Aotearoa is lucky to have such gifted behind-the-scenes talent.

“Our music is finding success all over the world. Our artists deserve immense credit, but they wouldn’t be where they are without the efforts of our incredible producers, engineers, creative artists and managers.

“It’s been a challenging year but it’s essential to take a step back, to reflect and acknowledge the incredible work that’s been released. Thank you to our winners and finalists for collaborating with our musicians and bringing their creative visions to life.”

The Kaiwhakahaere Puoro o te Tau | Recorded Music NZ Manager of the Year was presented at the Artisan Awards by the Music Managers Forum (NZ) to Paul McKessar from CRS Management.

For the past 15 years he has been a director of CRS Music Management and currently manages several high-profile artists like BENEE, Miss June and Brooke Fraser among others.

Music Managers Forum (NZ) chair Teresa Patterson said it was exciting to celebrate Paul’s career at the 2020 Artisan Awards.

“Music managers are an important part of an artist’s success, someone to share in the highs and the lows that come with working in the music industry. It’s great to be able to celebrate their contribution to the careers of our favourite Kiwi musicians,” says Patterson.

The 2020 Artisan Awards is available to stream now on ThreeLive. The Aotearoa Music Awards will take place Sunday 15 November at Spark Arena and will be broadcast live on The Edge TV from 7pm and continue on Three from 8.30pm.

The entire broadcast will be streamed on ThreeNow, and public tickets are also available from Ticketmaster for only $25.

Thanks to the official Aotearoa Music Awards audio streaming partner Spotify please check out all the finalists via these links:


2020 Artisan Award Winners

Te Kaiwhakaputa Toa | Massey University Best Producer

  • WINNER: Josh Fountain
  • Brad Kora – A.B III (L.A.B)
  • CHAII & Frank Keys – Lightswitch (CHAII)

Te Kaipukaha Toa | Best Engineer

  • WINNER: Simon Gooding – Reb Fountain (Reb Fountain)
  • Lee Prebble – Manawa Wera (Ria Hall)
  • Lee Prebble & Ara Adams-Tamatea – A.B III (L.A.B)

Te Puoro Ataata Toa | NZ On Air Best Music Video

  • WINNER: Anahera Parata – ‘Bunga’ (SWIDT)
  • Callum Devlin & Annabel Kean – ‘I’m Not Getting Excited’ (The Beths)
  • Connor Pritchard – ‘All Your Ships Have Sailed’ (Troy Kingi)

Te Toi Ataata Pukaemi Toa | Best Album Artwork

  • WINNER: Lily Paris West – Look Me In The Eye (Mermaidens)
  • Karin Canzek – Reb Fountain (Reb Fountain)
  • Mike Braid – The Brightest Flame (Jeremy Redmore)

Kaiwhakahaere Puoro o te Tau | Recorded Music NZ Manager of the Year

  • WINNER: Paul McKessar (CRS Management)
    • BENEE
  • Dan Woolston (Richmond Music)
    • Montell2099, MELODOWNZ, SACHI, SmokeyGotBeatz, Trey Bond
  • Nicole Thomas & Paula Yeoman (NicNak Media Ltd)
    • Theia, Chores, Paige, Abby Wolfe, & Neko

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